Current Portfolio:

BULLISH Play Updates

Clean Energy Fuels - CLNE - close 15.24 change -0.11 stop 14.15

Target(s): 16.15, 16.80
Key Support/Resistance Areas: 17.00, 16.20, 14.80
Current Gain/Loss: +0.59%
Time Frame: 1 to 3 weeks
New positions: Yes

9/25: Our trigger to enter long positions in CLNE was hit on Friday. The stock closed down on the day while the broader market surged higher. But the stock closed higher on Thursday when the broader market was weak. Simply, the stock appears to be consolidating some of its recent gains. I still think we see more upside.

9/23: Talk about natural gas legislation in Washington is heating up and CLNE should be a big beneficiary. The stock has formed a solid basing pattern since the flash crash lows on 5/6 and I believe it is poised for a move higher. There is a primary downtrend line up near its 200-day SMA which is more than +10% higher from current levels and I think it will easily be reached. Let's use a trigger of $15.15 to enter long positions. I've offered two targets that are +6.5% and +10.5% higher, and will consider adding a higher target if the move picks up steam. Our stop will be below the recent swing low and an upward trend line that began last October.

Current Position: Long CLNE stock, entry was at $15.15

Options Traders: Long November $16.00 CALL

Annotated chart:

Entry on September 23, 2010
Earnings 11/9/2010 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 973,000
Listed on September 13, 2010

Noble Corp - NE - close 34.23 change +0.03 stop 32.85 *NEW*

Target(s): 35.90, 36.80, 38.30
Key Support/Resistance Areas: 36.95, 38.50, 33.50
Current Gain/Loss: +1.42%
Time Frame: 1 to 3 weeks
New Positions: Only with tight stops

9/23: It is disappointing NE didn't perform better on Friday. The stock was essentially flat as the market ripped higher. Volume has been higher the last two days which could mean there is an institution unloading shares. The million dollar questions are when will they be done, and is it a big or small institution? Maybe Friday was it, but maybe not. As such, I suggest readers use caution and you may want to place a tighter stop in the $33.75 area to limit losses if NE heads lower. Officially, we are moving the stop up to $32.85 to give this time to work. NE remains in a bull flag on its daily chart and Friday was a great opportunity for the stock to break higher, but it didn't.

9/21 & 9/22: NE continues to look strong but I am concerned about the overbought conditions in the broader market. A dip could come but I think it will be bought and may give readers another chance to enter. My comments below remain valid.

9/18: NE made a nice recovery today closing +1.7% on the day. The stock remains in a bull flag on its daily chart. If we break higher prior to a pullback I suggest readers look for an exit or tighten stops to lock in profits. I've added $35.90 as a target which is approximately +4% from our entry, while $36.80 is +6%. I'll be looking to take profits or tighten stops as these levels approach.

Current Position: Long NE stock, entry was at $34.60

Options Traders: Long October $36.00 CALL

Annotated chart:

Entry on September 15, 2010
Earnings 10/20/10 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 3.7 million
Listed on September 11, 2010

iPath S&P 500 VIX ST Futures - VXX - close 16.63 change -0.99 stop 16.23

Target(s): 18.45, 19.25, 20.40
Key Support/Resistance Areas: 17.50, 19.75, 20.60
Current Gain/Loss: -6.05%
Time Frame: 1 to 2 weeks
New positions: Yes, preferably on pullbacks

NOTE: I view this as an aggressive trade so small position size is recommended. Long VXX is a bearish play on equities, however, it is listed as long play because we are long the underlying instrument.

9/25: VXX collapsed nearly -$1 as the market ripped higher on Friday. I suggest readers use caution with this position. If the market breaks out higher this week we need to get out the way. Then we can consider possibly entering at a lower price. Let's implement a stop at $16.23 and move on if we are taken out.

9/21 & 9/22: I suggest we stick with no stop here and play for a broader market pullback. The bulls look tired and the pullback could come quick as traders will run for the exits to lock in profits. This is when we want to be selling positions and tightening stops. For readers who do not have positions I view the depressed levels in VXX as an opportunity for nice quick trade. Just remember to plan your exit and stick with it. $18.45 and $19.25 are the primary targets.

Current Position: Long VXX stock, entry was at 17.70

Options Traders: Long October $19.00 CALL

Annotated chart:

Entry on September 14, 2010
Earnings N/A (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 21 million
Listed on September 13, 2010

BEARISH Play Updates

Alleghany Technologies - ATI - close 45.83 change +3.06 stop 46.82

Target(s): 44.65, 43.75, 43.05
Key Support/Resistance Areas: 46.25, 43.80, 42.00, 40.00
Current Gain/Loss: -2.64%
Time Frame: 1 to 2 weeks
New Positions: No

9/25: Ouch! After looking so promising on Thursday and having more than a +4% unrealized gain, ATI surged +7% on Friday. I did not see any news to cause the spike, however, call activity picked up noticeably across many months. I suggest readers use caution and may want to consider exiting the position now. I've adjusted all targets up and am looking for an exit. ATI should turn back to test its 20-day SMA which is near our immediate target of $44.65, which will be breakeven on the trade.

9/22: ATI tried to make a run higher today but the move was stopped dead in its tracks and ATI immediately headed lower and consolidated near those lows the entire day. The stock is hanging onto its 20-day SMA and if it breaks below our targets should be reached relatively quick. I am looking for broader market weakness in the coming days and for ATI to trade down near $42.00 fairly quick.

9/21: Steel producers have been getting downgraded and the sector remains in a downtrend. I suggest we take advantage of an impending correction in the broader market and initiate short positions in ATI, which should send ATI back towards its recent lows. Let's use one of two triggers. If ATI trades up to $44.65 or a break down to $43.78. If triggered at $44.65 our first two targets are -4.5% and -7% lower. Our stop is above a recent downtrend line that began in late July.

Suggested Position: Short ATI stock, entry was at $44.65

Annotated chart:

Entry on September 22, 2010
Earnings: 10/20/2010 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 1.7 million
Listed on September 20, 2010

Stifel Financial Corp - SF - close 47.95 change -1.59 stop 50.10

Target(s): 46.05, 45.05, 44.05
Key Support/Resistance Areas: 50.00, 48.00, 45.75, 45.00, 43.50
Current Gain/Loss: -1.70%
Time Frame: 1 to 2 weeks
New positions: Neutral

9/25: SF rebounded with the broader market. I still believe this sector will suffer from the lack of retail trading but if the broader market heads higher SF most likely will too. Readers should use caution.

9/22: The financial services sector looks terrible across all industries, from banks, to lenders, to broker dealers. A study released today said that the 85% of Americans do not trust the financial markets and have therefore reconsidered their investment activities. Retail trading volumes are way down which will hurt firms like SF. I suggest readers initiate short positions in SF using one of two triggers. Let's use a trigger to short SF if it trades up to $48.45 or if breaks down to $47.52. The stock may find support at some of its moving averages but ultimately SF should head down to test its recent lows if the broader market cooperates. If triggered at $48.45 our targets range from -4.5% to -9% lower. Our stop is above Tuesday's high.

Suggested Position: Short SF stock if it trades to $48.45 or $47.52

Options Traders: Buy November $45.00 PUT, current ask $1.50

Annotated chart:

Entry on September xx
Earnings: 11/09/2010 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 250,000
Listed on September 22, 2010