Good evening. We are getting mixed results and knee jerk reactions to earnings reports so we have chosen to tread lightly with new plays for the time being. We currently have long and short positions to take advantage of the moves. My expectation is that we should see some weakness in the market this week but that could all change (for better or worse) depending on earnings results. For now, initiating long positions on further weakness is probably the right call. The S&P 500 has solid horizontal support in the 1,050 to 1,055 area which is also near the 50.0% and 61.8% retracement levels from the July 1 lows to last week's highs. This is the area where I am interested in opening long positions and keeping tight stops on short positions. I have listed two stocks below with earnings in the near future that I like for long plays. These may or may not make it into the model portfolio.
Long MSFT: If earnings weren't this Thursday after the bell I would consider releasing this play. I believe MSFT could have a favorable earnings report but I would hedge the position if I were going long just in case. The stock has broken its longer term downtrend line and I would like to see the stock retest it from above which also corresponds to its 20-day SMA. This should provide a good support for a bounce.
Long PAR: The stock has been trading in a sideways channel between the $9.00 and $10.50 level since March. I like the stock to bounce at current levels, especially on any further weakness. Earnings are July 29th so that is the wild card.