Thursday, January 24, 2008

Counter-Trend Rally

Counter-Trend RallySocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
Frank Barbera

Primary Wave (A) to the downside of a developing cyclical bear market that is likely bottomed over the last two days. From here, we expect a sizable counter-trend rally in stocks moving the S&P back up into the 1400 zone, with the daily news flow improving over the next few weeks taking away some of the negative gloom overhanging the credit crisis. For a time in the weeks ahead, it may well appear as though the skies have cleared and the sun is out shining once again in the land of financial markets.

This is the job of Wave B, to move the herd back to the center of the boat. That said, stocks have been, and are very likely to remain in bear market mode for some time, even if one or two market averages were to record a matching or token new all time high, unlikely, but not impossible. Commodities look toppy and are expected to weaken as the US and the world deals with the deflationary trend now emerging in the global economy...

Margin Data Suggest Prolonged Bear Market to Come

Margin Data Suggest Prolonged Bear Market to ComeSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
Ashraf Laidi

One essential indicator for the future performance of US equity indices is the aggregate margin debt used by member firms of the NYSE. After attaining a record high of $381 billion in July, member firms’ margin use continued to tumble for the following 4 months, reaching a low of $322 billion. Such declines in debt result from the execution of margin calls as client losses escalate to unsustainable levels, which is the case during mounting market volatility.

The chart below clearly shows that the rapid declines in margin debt from their record highs correctly predicted the prolonged bear market in equities in fall 1987, fall 1998 and spring 2000. The continued declines in margin debt in December to $322 billion from the July high of $381 billion suggests that continued losses are due in the market, which is consistent with our expectations for a prolonged bear market in equities. The 12-15% declines in stocks we predicted back in December are already underway. We expect another 15-25% of declines to come by end of H1 as the macroeconomic deterioration coupled with prolonged losses in US banks and profit warnings (no currency translation effect this time as the dollar stabilized in Q4-Q1) will overwhelm the easing measures of the Fed.

The importance of determining where the general equity indices are heading is highlighted by the 70-20-10 rule, which states that 70% of a stock’s movements are influenced by the broad indices, 20% are driven by stock’s sector and 10% by the fundamentals of the individual stock. As history has shown without fail, individual stocks have consistently followed the broad averages during prolonged bear markets regardless of their individual fundamentals.

Incorporating this outlook to currencies, continued risk reduction should maintain the yen as the key beneficiary of falling risk appetite and unwinding of carry trades. Further declines in USDJPY, GBPJPY and CADJPY are in store as we anticipate 103, 202 and 100 respectively before the end of the quarter.











Editor's Note: Do not miss Mr. Laidi's Q&A session with the Financial Times last week regarding currencies located at
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/34139f9c-c50b-11dc-811a-0000779fd2ac.html

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Timer Digest Market Commentary

Timer Digest Market CommentarySocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
Fari Hamzei

While the Equity and Debt Markets were having a wild ride on Tuesday, Uncle Ben joined the White House to pressure Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid & Co. to move faster on a gigantic Stimulus Package. The real facts are a) Washington is too slow to move effectively in this Internet Age and b) the damage done by the Subprime Go-Go Days is simply huge.

The collective brain of the market is smarter than all of the above. While we may have seen a short-term-bottom-in-progress yesterday, this is no more that a dead cat bounce. Tuesday action reminds me of April 4, 2000. There is a lot of pain ahead for the longs.

Here are some charts. We will get into more details in our Webinar this afternoon.


I wanted us to see a -300 or lower reading on NYSE Advance-Decline McClellan Oscillator as we did last March.



Dow Jones Industrial Average closed below 12K but NYSE Volume did not get over 3 Bils. Notice we did not reach -3 sigma as we did last Aug 16th.



Notice we almost hit 5 sigma on VIX. This is rare.

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