Our new weekend play has been triggered with a surge to new 2009 highs.


CALL Play Updates

EQUINIX Inc. - EQIX - close: 107.96 change: -0.15 stop: 102.75

EQIX tagged a new high this morning and then spent the rest of the day slowly drifting lower. Overall there is no change from my prior comments. The intraday high was $109.21. Our first target is $109.50. Our second target is $113.50. The plan was to use small position sizes to limit risk. I am not suggesting new positions at this time.

Entry  on  December 09 at $103.02
Change since picked:       + 4.94 
Earnings Date            02/10/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        501 thousand 
Listed on  December 09, 2009         


Intl. Business Mach. - IBM - close: 132.31 change: +1.74 stop: 126.90

Our new call play on IBM is off to a healthy start. A positive article in Barron's over the weekend helped push IBM to new multi-year highs. Our plan was to buy calls at $131.55. If you missed the entry point you could jump in now but with a little patience you might get a better entry point on a dip back toward $131.00-130.00. Our first target is $134.95. Our second target is $139.00. Our time frame is about four weeks. We do not want to hold over IBM's earnings report.

Annotated Chart:

Entry  on  December 28 at $131.55
Change since picked:       + 0.76
Earnings Date            01/19/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        5.8 million  
Listed on  December 26, 2009         


Infosys Tech. - INFY - close: 55.86 change: -0.13 stop: 51.95

INFY spent the day churning sideways. We have about two weeks left before we need to exit to avoid earnings. I am not suggesting new positions at this time. INFY has already hit our first target at $55.75. Our second and final target is $59.50. We will plan to exit ahead of the January 12th earnings report.

Entry  on  December 05 at $ 51.88 /gap down entry point
                           /originally listed at $52.46
Change since picked:       + 3.98
                            /1st target hit @ 55.75 (+7.4%)
Earnings Date            01/12/10 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        1.4 million  
Listed on  December 05, 2009         


Mettler Toledo - MTD - close: 105.73 change: -0.51 stop: 99.45

Traders bought the dip again and MTD held the $105 level. While this is encouraging shares may dip toward the $103.00-102 zone, which is where I'd look for a new entry point. Our first target is $109.00.

Entry  on  December 19 at $102.66 (small positions) /gap down entry
Change since picked:       + 3.07
Earnings Date            02/04/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        106 thousand
Listed on  December 19, 2009         


Norfolk Southern - NSC - close: 53.59 change: -0.65 stop: 50.95

NSC suffered some profit taking but broken resistance near $53.00 acted as support. This pull back today could be a new bullish entry point to buy calls. Our first target is now $56.50. Our second and final target is $59.50. Our time frame is several weeks. FYI: The Point & Figure chart is bullish with a $65 target.

Picked on  November 21 at $ 51.84 (small positions)/gap higher entry
Change since picked:       + 1.75
Earnings Date            01/27/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        5.4 million  
Listed on  November 21, 2009         


NUCOR Corp. - NUE - close: 46.95 change: -0.15 stop: 42.75 *new*

NUE only lost 15 cents on the session but the action today looked bearish with a failed rally at the $48.00 level. Shares are short-term overbought. I'd expect a deeper correction. More conservative traders may want to bump their stops closer to $44.00. Our multi-week target is $49.50. We will plan to exit ahead of the late January earnings report.

Entry  on  December 22 at $ 45.85 (1/2 position or less) /gap higher entry
Change since picked:       + 1.10
Earnings Date            01/28/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        4.5 million  
Listed on  December 22, 2009         


Precision Castparts - PCP - close: 112.97 change: -1.02 stop: 107.25

PCP is still digesting gains in a sideways move between $112 and $116. The $112-110 zone should offer some support. If the $110 level breaks then look for additional support near $107.50. I'm not suggesting new positions at this time. PCP has already hit our first target at $112.45. Our second target is $118.75. The Point & Figure chart is bullish with a $157 target (it was $131).

Picked on  December 01 at $107.35
Change since picked:       + 5.62
                            /1st target hit $112.45 (+4.7%)
Earnings Date            01/20/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        817 thousand 
Listed on  November 28, 2009         


Stifel Financial - SF - close: 58.58 change: +0.07 stop: 54.95

Unfortunately SF is not seeing much follow through on its breakout past resistance near $57.00. Shares are just drifting sideways. Readers may want to wait and look for a new dip or bounce near $57.00 as a new entry point before initiating new positions. Our first target is $64.50. Our time frame is January expiration. The P&F chart is bullish and points to a $70 target.

Entry  on  December 22 at $ 58.05
Change since picked:       + 0.53
Earnings Date            02/11/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        207 thousand 
Listed on  December 16, 2009         


UnitedHealth Group - UNH - close: 31.39 change: -0.29 stop: 27.99

UNH is still slipping and I'm expecting a dip back toward the $31.00-30.00 zone. Readers can use this pull back as a new entry point. The $30 level should offer some support. Our first target is $34.00. Our longer-term target is $36.00. Our time frame is several weeks. If you buy March calls you might want to think about holding over the late January earnings report.

Entry  on  December 10 at $ 30.31 
Change since picked:       + 1.08
Earnings Date            01/21/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        819 thousand 
Listed on  December 10, 2009         


United Tech. - UTX - close: 70.46 change: +0.10 stop: 67.45

Traders bought the dip near $70.00 and its rising 10-dma this afternoon. The late afternoon bounce looks like a new entry point to buy calls. More conservative traders may want to use a tighter stop loss. Our first target is $74.75. The Point & Figure chart is bullish with a $95.00 target.

Entry  on  December 15 at $ 70.25
Change since picked:       + 0.21
Earnings Date            01/21/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        4.0 million  
Listed on  December 12, 2009         


Valmont Industries - VMI - close: 81.50 change: -0.28 stop: 78.45

There is no change from my prior comments on VMI. The stock is still consolidating sideways. Our first target to take profits is at $84.90. Our second target is $88.75. FYI: The most recent data list short interest at 9% of the very small 20.1 million-share float, which suggests this stock could see a short squeeze.

Entry  on  December 10 at $ 81.00
Change since picked:       + 0.50
Earnings Date            02/10/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        238 thousand 
Listed on  December 05, 2009         


Vertex Pharma - VRTX - close: 43.22 change: +0.18 stop: 39.75

VRTX hit another new 52-week high at $43.53 this morning. More conservative traders may want to take profits early in the $43.50-44.00 zone. I am not suggesting new positions at this time. Our target to exit is at $44.25.

Entry  on  December 03 at $ 40.25
Change since picked:       + 2.79
Earnings Date            02/09/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        3.2 million  
Listed on  November 23, 2009         


Whirlpool - WHR - close: 82.63 change: -0.32 stop: 75.95

WHR is stuck in the $82-84 zone. I'm still expecting a dip toward $80 before it moves higher. We can use a dip or a bounce near $81-80 as a new entry point to buy calls. More conservative traders may want to adjust their stop loss closer to $80. WHR has already hit our first target at $84.75. Our second target is $89.00. FYI: The Point & Figure chart is bullish with a $103 target.

Entry  on  December 19 at $ 80.76 /gap higher entry
Change since picked:       + 1.87
                             /1st target hit $84.75 (+4.9%)
Earnings Date            02/08/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        1.6 million  
Listed on  December 19, 2009         


PUT Play Updates

*Currently we do not have any put play updates*


Strangle & Spread Play Updates

(What is a strangle? It's when a trader buys an out-of-the-money (OTM) call and an OTM put on the same stock. The strategy is neutral. You do not care what direction the stock moves as long as the move is big enough to make your investment profitable.)

Apple Inc. - AAPL - close: 211.61 change: +2.57 stop: n/a

Shares of AAPL hit new highs near $214 a share. The stock rallied on news that analysts have placed a $250 price target on the stock. Plus there was news behind the rumors that AAPL was planning to launch a new tablet PC when it was discovered that AAPL bought the website name iSlate.com back in 2007. I am not suggesting new strangle positions at this time.

The options in the January strangle were January $220 calls (AJL-LV) and the January $180 puts (APV-XR). Our estimated cost is $5.60. We want to sell if either option hits $10.00 or more.

Picked on  November 30 at $199.91
Change since picked:       +11.70
Earnings Date            01/21/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =       15.1 million  
Listed on  November 30, 2009         


United Parcel Service - UPS - close: 57.96 change: -0.16 stop: n/a

UPS continues to ignore any market movement and remains stuck in its trading range. I'm not suggesting new strangle positions.

January Strangle
The options suggested for the January strangle were the January $60.00 calls (UPS-AL) and the January $55.00 puts (UPS-MK). Our estimated cost was $1.35. I would plan to sell if either option hit $3.50 or more.

Picked on  November 21 at $ 57.99 /gap open entry
Change since picked:       - 0.03 
Earnings Date            02/02/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume =        4.7 million  
Listed on  November 21, 2009