8/9/13…it’s good to be king!…better to be RICH and not king!

From The Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: “He’s so popular, when he was in Vietnam they were shooting at him from both sides.” – Don Rickles, about Bob Hope

Bloomberg Quotes of the Day: “Nothing ever becomes real until it is experienced.” – John Keats

Bloomberg Top Stories:

*Wall Street Banks Pull Ahead as Fiscal Crisis Hurts European Counterparts – really?

*Slim’s America Movil to Offer About $9.6 Billion for Remaining KPN Shares

*JPMorgan Said Near SEC London Whale Settlement That Includes Admissions – !!!

*Oil Gains With Metals on Chinese Output Expansion as S&P 500 Futures Drop

*Russian Economy Unexpectedly Slows to the Weakest Annual Pace Since 2009

*China Credit Growth Declines to a 21-Month Low as Li Curbs Shadow Banking

*Floater Sales Double as Yields Rise on Fed Outlook Shift – hmmm, time to sell them?

*London Home Prices Decline in Most-Expensive Areas as Cash Buyers Dwindle

*Loonie Reprieve Seen in Canadians Spending Cash Like It’s 2010

*Canada Loses 34k Jobs in July on Less Government Employment

*U.S. Withdraws Diplomats From Lahore in Warning Against Travel to Pakistan – !!!

*Americans Giving Up Citizenship Jump Sixfold as Tougher Asset Rules Loom – oh, don’t worry…they’ll be back once they see that safety is better than low taxes!

*Yemen Al-Qaeda Suspects Killed by Seventh U.S. Drone Strike in Three Weeks


When will the insanity end? Along with the summer doldrums? Next Friday’s options expiry? Beats me. Meanwhile, sidelined and lost. This is a major test of ones convictions.

Sure we had a rally yesterday and volume rose slightly but still both measures remain well below average. The Dow had a huge ‘V’-shaped session yesterday: first, it surged over 50 points on the open, rose another 30 points in the next 15 minutes then started a decline that took it all they way down to 15420 or -50 and a 140 point swing, then a rally back to 15540 for a 120 point gain, then, exhausted it limped into the close for a net 28 point gain or 0.2% – worst performer of all the indices…even Dow Utilities gained 0.3%! Best was Dow Transports up 0.8% followed by NYSE Financials up 0.6%, with the rest of the herd up 0.4-0.5%. Call TB clueless in Minnesota. Note that the gain didn’t offset the prior three days losses…not even close! This sets up an interesting expiry next Friday…don’t you think?

The Nasdaq 100 gained 11 points: 5 members however added 13 points while 4 losers, led by APPL with -3.3, subtracted 7 points. APPL is no longer the savior and continues to swing violently while going nowhere despite ‘touching’ its 200 day (473) three days ago!

Advance/Declines and Breadth were higher but no ‘mojo’ here. New 52 week Highs rose sharply to 293 vs 161 vs 280 and New Lows were nearly halved to 140 vs 240 vs 252. The VIX, declined below 14 after rising for two sessions to close at 12.73 -.25 while the trading range narrowed to 12.37-12.98 from 12.96-13.91!….can you spot a trend?

…here’s the book:

* Dow 30 +0.2% vs -0.3% vs -0.6% vs -0.3% vs +0.2%; Dow Transports +0.8% vs -0.7% vs -1.3% vs -0.8% vs -0.3% vs +3.3%!!!; Russell 2000 +0.5% vs -0.1% vs -1% vs +0.3% vs flat vs +1.4%!; Dow Utilities +0.3% vs -0.7% vs -0.5% vs -0.8% vs -0.1% vs +1%; S&P 500 +0.4% vs -0.4% vs -0.6% vs -0.2% vs +0.2% vs +1.3%. Nasdaq Composite +0.4% vs -0.4% vs -0.7% vs +0.1% vs +0.4% vs +1.4%; NDQ 100 +0.4% vs -0.3% vs -0.7% vs flat vs +0.6% vs +1.2%. (left the 6th day in for effect!)

*NYSE Volume rose modestly to a still well below average 3.25B shares vs 3B vs 3.1B vs 2.52B (4th weakest of 2013…1.96B is the low) vs 3.13B vs 3.78B. REAL NYSE Volume also rose but to a meaningless 686M shares from a very weak 617M vs 658M vs 533M vs 678M vs 798M (482M on 7/3 in a shortened trading session is the low). The 12-month average is 714M shares. The average since 6/30 is now 677M shares, ranging from 482M to 906M. There have been just SEVEN 1B+ share sessions! There have been 30 800M+ shares in 2013: 12 up, 17 down, and one mixed, but on trades of less than that 93 have been up and 38 down …there have been 30 mixed sessions.

*New 52 week highs have ranged from 33-864. They rose to 293 vs 161 vs 280 vs 450 vs 458 vs 730. New lows were nearly halved to 140 vs 240 vs 280 vs 145 vs 80 vs 108 – 27 is the recent low.

  1. Advance/Declines were modestly positive again: +1.9x vs -2.2x vs -3x! vs -1.4x vs +1.1x vs +1.6x (recent range -17.5x to +4.4x) on NYSE and +1.5x vs -2.1x vs -2.5x! vs +1.4x vs -1.1x vs +2.6x (recent -3.5x to +3x). Breadth was slightly better: +2.8x vs -2.2x vs -3.3x vs -1.2x vs +1.1x vs +3.3x vs +1.2x (recent -18.6x!!! to +6.9x!!!) on NYSE and +1.7x vs -1.9x vs -2.5x vs +1.2x vs +1.6x vs +3.2x! (recent -12.8x to +6.2x)  
  2. NYSE Financials were higher for only the 3rd time in 10 sessions by +0.6x vs0.7% vs -0.8% vs -0.3% vs +0.2% vs +1.5%. BofA was most active rising 0.6% vs -0.8% vs -1.1%! vs -0.3% vs -0.2% vs +2.4%, closing at $14.61 +.08. It has been weak since hitting $15.03 11 days ago – highest since Jan. 14 and major res. Brokers -0.1% vs -0.4% vs -1% vs -0.1% vs +0.2% vs +2%; KBW Banks +0.3% vs -0.9% vs -1% vs -0.4% vs -0.1% vs +1.9%; Nasdaq Banks +0.4% vs -0.7% vs -0.9% vs +0.2% vs -0.2% vs +1.8%.   
  3. Volatility (S&P VIX) slipped for the first time in three sessions to 12.73 -.25. Note the recent low of 11.84, the recent range is 11.83-13.91 but with 7/31’s high being 14.14!!! VIX peaked at 20.49, plunged to 18.90 on June options expiry then closed at 20.11 on 6/24 and has been down below 14 since! 6/24’s session high of 21.91 was highest since 12/31/12 (22.72)!!! The range since April ‘12 is 11.05 (multi-year low o n 3/14/13) to 21.90. It is well below the 40/50 day (15.03/15.22) and the 200 day (14.85)!!!…ytd the range is 11.05 (3/14) to 21.92 (6/24)!

European stocks mixed, Asia moderately higher, ex-Korea: UK +0.3% vs -0.4% vs -0.8% vs flat vs -0.4%; France -0.1% vs +0.7% vs +0.6% vs flat vs +0.2%; Germany flat vs +1% vs -0.4% vs -0.1% vs -0.2%; Japan +0.1% vs -1.6%! vs -4%!!! vs +1%! vs -1.4%!!! vs +3.3%!!! vs +2.5%!!! vs -1.5%! vs +1.5%! vs -3.3%!!! vs -3%!!! vs -1.1%!;  Hang Seng +0.7% vs +0.3% vs -1.5%!!! vs -1.3%!!! vs +0.1%; Korea -0.2% vs +0.3% vs -1.5% vs -0.5% vs -0.4%; India +0.7% vs +0.7% vs -0.4% vs -2.3% vs +0.1%. U.S. equity futures slightly weaker in yet another very narrow trading range: DOW -32; SPX -3.90; NDQ -2.

Bonds had modest gains again yesterday and are slightly higher overnight: 10 yr Treasury 2.58% +1/16 (recent range 2.74% to 1.63%!!!), and the 30 yr range of 2.82% to 3.77%, currently 3.64% +1/8. The long TIP is 1.24% +1/8. The (record?) low of 0.36% was set on 4/5. Recent high 1.53%! Libor update: 0.265% 3 mos, 0.395% 6 mos, steady. Both remain near the Jan. 2010 record lows (0.245% and 0.382% respectively). Foreign bond yields mixed and with no major changes: Germany 1.67% -1; UK 2.47% -1; France 2.24% +1, Italy 4.19% +1; Spain 4.48% -2; Portugal 6.46% +1; Greece 9.49% -1 vs 9.59%. Look at some of its recent big moves: 9.64% -18; 9.81% -10; 10.02% +19; 9.95% +17; 9.86% -13;  10.02% -16; 10.27% -19; 10.33% -25!; 10.85% +28!; 10.54% +40!!!; 10.85% -37!!!. Recent range: 8.04% to 12.57%.  Japan 0.75% +1.

Gold closed higher and with gusto after being lower for 4 straight sessions and closed back above the critical $1300 at $1309.90 +$24.60!!! – don’t write it off yet! Yesterday’s high was $1313.80 following Wednesday’s session low of $1271.80 – lowest since 7/17! 7/23’s session high was $1349.20 – highest since 6/20! 6/27’s intraday low was $1179.40 – lowest since at least 2011 and now critical support. $1300 is again psychological res, and it is now back between the 40 day $1296 and the 50 day $1316 – both still falling. The 200 day is a distant $1539!!! Overnight it is little changed at $1309.80 -.10. Crude closed sharply lower for a 3rd session at $103.40 -.97 – and with a session low of $102.22 knocking out 7/31’s session low of $102.67. It hangs by a thread above the 40/50 day m/a’s (102.40/100.80), both rising. The 200 day ($94.08) is distant support. MAJOR SUP, broken yesterday, is $102.61, the 7/30 low. Minor res is $104.21 -36 – a triple bottom from 7/10-7/12. 4/18’s low of $85.61 was lowest since 12/11! It is little changed overnight at $103.92 .52. The high of $108.93 on 7/19! The range is $85.61-$109.32 since March 1, 2012.

Some random thoughts:

It’s Friday but doesn’t feel like it to TB. Nothing to get excited about here…things are getting worse not better. It’s not that I see the glass as half-empty that’s the problem but that there is a hole in the glass as well.

Meanwhile, a Bloomberg article today says the ex-pat U.S. citizens gave up their citizenship in the second quarter at a six-fold increase form a year ago due to newly imposed asset-disclosure rules. You know what…screw them…they were avoiding taxes in the first place and let’s let them see what freedom is in other countries. Like their corporate counterparts you can cut taxes all you want and you still won’t see their money repatriated. They are whores…plain and simple…who have no appreciation for what this country has given them. We are better off without them.

But why shouldn’t they? They base everything on their personal wealth…and since there is no way they can spend it all, the money is…as Ivan Boesky once said “just markers”.

Think of Trading Places where brothers Randolph (Ralph Bellamy) and Mortimer (Don Ameche) Duke, destroyed the lives of their nephew (Dan Aykroyd) and a street hustler (Eddie Murphy) and at the end we find that it was all on a ONE DOLLAR bet! This class of wealthy people would…and is…doing it to you and other hard-working Americans. They are aided and abetted by some CEO’s who are busy adding themselves to that small but growing group as the middle class slip-and-slides and the poor get poorer with the net effect of a wealth gap that is growing at an increasing rate…exponentially?

This is why having a nice, fun weekend is not only delusional but lackadaisical…till Monday…



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