Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Still Trading

Been doing a few things in my brokerage account.

Except for Wells Fargo (heavily short), and a small short position in HSBC Bank, my account has pretty much been cleaned out and turned over. It's very relaxing to be rid of many of these trades that, although were ultimately profitable, they tortured me for months.

New positions include:

Long SWC at 3.87, as a way to try to play a palladium bounce. I'd rather buy more palladium directly but my commodities account is low on funds.

I got long TBT - the Ultra Short long-term (20 year) Treasury bond ETF. Cost basis = 59.76. This is the *hedge* against the end of the United States.

I got in and out of OIH - the Oil Service ETF. Bought at 88.25 and sold at 114.14 two trading days later.

Then I got long again at 85.31.

I flipped Google the day of its earnings announcement - bought at 311.55 and sold at 337.25. Should of held that one for the earnings release that afternoon as it traded up to 390 or so.

I sold my Jan 75 puts in HBC for 10.50. Sorry, can't find the cost basis for them. I definitely bought them a while ago (at $5 apiece?).

I dumped SRS - my Ultra Short Real Estate position. In at roughly 93.00 and out at 122.

On my Ultra Short Financial position, SKF, as I mentioned before, I dumped my core position. Then on October 14th (the day after the Dow *up 900 pts* day), I got back in at 105. I sold it at 124 - or at least I thought I did shortly thereafter. Turns out I just noticed that they left 76 shares hanging.

The SKF went higher since then, up nearly to 136 as I type this. Heck, an error MADE me $800 or so. This never happens to me! I tried to sell it but apparently my electronic broker won't accept odd lots for that ticker. This is ridiculous. I am closing for crying out loud. If they won't accept an odd lot, then they shouldn't fill me partially in the first place. Doesn't matter, I am comfortable holding this tiny position indefinitely - you watch, I'll make 75 points on it!


Taylor Conant said...


If Norilsk sells their stake in SWC, will that be good or bad for the price? Also, how will that Stock Psychology guy explain Norilsk selling, I thought he said the Russians were trying to corner the Palladium market? And why would palladium bounce right now, aren't commodities going to continue to experience a correction as "demand" weakens around the world with this crisis?

TBT-- if the United States ends, how will you even redeem your TBT? In other words, if that happens, how can you be sure there will still be a stock exchange and people won't have liquidated their TBT in the process?

OIH-- Why? Same argument as SWC, why get into a commodity now with strengthening dollar and weakening "demand"? I am assuming you sense we're near the "bottom" for commodity weakness or near the "top" for dollar strength?

SRS-- Why did you dump this, getting too volatile?

SKF-- Looks like its on the way up again. I'd like to get back in but I can't decide what's a good price. I was looking for a "dead-cat bounce" of the broader markets too to get into the UltraShort ETFs for QQQ, S&P, Dow, etc. but the market just keeps tanking. How do you see this playing out? Sudden, dramatic crash/bottom, or a little recovery before the sudden dramatic crash, or recovery to a long, painful death or what?

And what about SKF? Continued, massive financial losses seem a given, especially with all these O-ARMs resetting in Feb/March (right?), should we just get into SKF and hold tight or are you anticipating a lower price again before jumping back in to ride into those resets?

Final question-- are you paying short term capital gains on all your trades or what? How does that work? I am trying to figure out how Wall Street doesn't get hammered just doing their day-to-day biz?

CaptiousNut said...

Yeah, commodities may get hammered still. It's important to remember I am making *trades* not investments. Palladium has been ravaged - from what, $560 this spring to $175 today? That's quite a pullback.

That other blogger will have to do his own explaining. I don't look too closely at that stuff.

TBT is a trade as well; not a wager on a discrete outcome, *the end*.

OIH is a trade. I already flipped it once. :) Didn't buy so much that I can't buy more, cheaper.

I am done with SKF, as far as big bets go. Now I can just short the individual tickers. I believe it has become top-heavy with the big banks (JPM, BAC, WFC,...). Don't be surprised if they don't ban short selling again. They may just be waiting for the shorts to pile in before they squeeze us again.

Short term gains = income tax rates. We get hammered at a near 50% rate - always have.

As for the shape of the bottom, I have no idea. House prices, if you believe that is THE PROBLEM, will be dropping for the next 12 months for sure as *resets* don't peak until December 09.