Saturday, June 24, 2017

Weekly: retail bust

The shake out caused by Amazons acquisitiong of Whole Foods continues to send tremors. The latest AMZN idea of sending a big box full of clothes for people to try on, with no charge for returns, and a discount for buying multiple items sent some stocks lower. ULTA would seem to be Amazon-proof, but that stock moved lower, and I took a big loss on one leg. I sold strangles on COST, and so far it is in the red.

Here are the trades (p = puts, c = calls, sell means sell-to-open, cover means buy-to-close, number near the end is price per contract)

Mon Sell MCD Jul 141 p 20
Sell NVDA JunW5 141 p 41
Sell ULTA Jul 315 c 50

Tue
Sell MCD Aug 140 p 61
Sell BA Aug 175 p 80

Wed
Sell BA Aug 220 c 51
Sell NVDA JulW1 177.5 c 66
Sell BA JulW1 185 p 24

Sell COST strangle:
Sell COST Aug 145 p 58
Sell COST Aug 185 c 17

Thu
Cover ULTA Jul 285 p 680 for a 700% loss. Ouch

Sell BRKB Jul 175 c 49

Sell TSLA JunW5 337.5 p 45
Sell VRX Aug 11 p 27

Sell UNH Jul 170 p 43
Sell UNH Jul 205 c 19

Sell QQQ Aug 128 p 50

Fri
Sell COST Jul 175 c
Sell BRKB Aug 175 c 90

Sell NVDA Jul 172.5 c 151
Sell BA Jul 185 p 37

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Monthly: 61-9 Grade C as tech falters

I count 61 winners, 9 losers for the June cycle, self-grade is C. Overall, a modest profit, even with some whopper losers in percentage terms. There were more than a few frustrating whipsaw moves, where I covered and then the underlying reversed. The tech sell off made for a difficult month. It could have been a lot worse. The AMZN merger with WFM set off more land mines for premium sellers. 
 
A few ETFs from best to worst for 2017:
 
EEM +17.7% emerging markets equity
GLD +8.9% gold
 
SPY +8.5% S&P 500, U.S. large cap
TLT +6.0% U.S. 20 year treasuries
 
SLV +4.5% silver
IWM +4.0% Russell 2000, U.S. small cap

My account is up +7.0%, lagging behind SPY, ahead of IWM. Note, the above numbers do not include dividends, which add about another 1% to SPY and a bit more to TLT.

Going forward, the bull market is intact. Again, signs of the top will be inverted yield curve, transports leading the first leg down, exuberant sentiment. Of these only the sentiment of stock market newsletters is in the red zone. Yields are getting there, but not yet inverted in the U.S. Transports are still okay. I am guessing there will be a steeper correction in late September, early October, but it is just a guess. Bear market? Don't see a bear market.

Weekly: land mines

Tough week, with a lot of land mines. I took a few hits, but came out ahead for the week.

Here are the trades (p = puts, c = calls, cover means buy-to-close, sell means sell-to-open, number near the end is the price per contract):

Mon Tech wreck continues. I book some huge losses on AAPL and NVDA.

Cover AAPL Jun 145 p 320 approximately 450% loss
Cover NVDA Jun 145 p 545 about a 1000% loss in 2 trading days
 
I move closer back to delta neutral with some small moves:
Sell AAPL JunW4 130 p 42
Sell NVDA Jun 162.5 c 46
 
Sell MCD Jul 160 c 18
Sell ULTA Jul 330 c 65
 
Roll BRKB: Cover Jun 165 c 468
Sell BRKB Jul 170 c 288

Tue Cover LMT Jun 260 p 04
Roll and rebalance Tesla as it zooms higher
 
Cover TSLA Jun 285 p 02
Sell TSLA JunW5 320 p
Sell TSLA Jun 350 p 61
 
Wed Cover TSLA Jun 375 c 805 another monster loss -1400%
Cover ULTA Jun 300 p 210 another bad loss -250%
 
Sell TSLA Jun 407.5 33
Sell NVDA Jul 185 c 92
 
Sell TSLA JunW4 325 p 139
 
Cover WYNN Jun 135 c 127 for a 300% loss
 
Roll BA: Cover BA Jun 177.5 p 04
Cover BA Jun 167.5 01
Sell BA Jul 175 p 42 
Sell BA Aug 170 p 98

Sell NVDA Jun 140 p 17
Sell QQQ Jul 146 c 23

Thu Cover AAPL Jun 157.5 c 01
 
Roll BA: Cover Jun 195 c 93 for a 600% loss
Sell BA Jul 210c 29
 
Fri Sell IWM Jul 147 c
Sell C Jul 57.5 p 15
 
Sell WYNN Jul 115 p 50

Friday, June 09, 2017

Weekly: Rule #1, Bat vs. Bat, and the Wrecking Ball

The pop song Wrecking Ball is the theme for this week. As the long rally in the big name tech stocks reverses in spectacular fashion on Friday. I suffer some losses, but am glad I tend to be such a cautious trader. Action like this was inevitable. Only unicorns and liars are able to buy the bottoms and sell the tops. I am neither. 

More than a few do the opposite Bat junior on Tastytrade called the exact top within a few minutes with his abysmal timing. Here the links to the two Tastytrade episodes: Link1 is the Thursday show with NVDA still moving up, and Link2 is Friday after the whipsaw crash move. For those that don't do links the message is to stay mechanical. Limit your losses, no matter what the market is doing.

For me, it boils down to:

Rule #1: Live to Trade Another Day


Here are the trades (p = puts, c = calls, sell means sell-to-open, cover means buy-to-close, number near the end of each line is price per contract):

Mon Sell NVDA Jun 134 p 32
Sell QQQ Jul 132 p 35
 
Sell BRKB Jul 160 p 79
 
Sell ULTA Jun 300 p 60
Sell ULTA Jul 285 p 90
 
Tue I close a few more positions for profit. I am getting whipsawed in ULTA, TSLA and more.
 
Cover CAT Jun 90 p 03
Cover FB Jun 140 p 04
 
Cover TSLA Jun 260 p 04
Cover BRKB Jun 150 p 01
 
Sell TSLA JunW4 310 p 84
Sell SPY Jul 225 p 54
 
Thu Damage control on NVDA and TSLA as they continue up
Cover TSLA Jun 275 p 05
 
Cover IWM Jun 129 p 05
Cover NVDA Jun 125 p 05
 
Sell NVDA Jun 143 p 42
Sell TSLA Jun 335 p 87
 
Sell IWM Jul 129 p 47
Sell NVDA Jul 130 p 87
 
Sell NVDA Jul 200 c 50
 
Buy NVDA shares 1/2 unit 155.18
 
Sell NVDA Jun 145 p 49

Fri Holy whipsaw Batman! Flash crash in some big name tech stocks, whipsaws more than a few. I keep dancing, but the music is way too fast for me to keep up. I suffer modest losses.
 
Cover JPM Jun 77.5 p 02
Cover BRKB Jun 155 p 01
Cover BRKB Jun 170 c 88
 
Roll IWM: 
Cover IWM Jul 125 p 20
Sell IWM Jul 132 p 50
 
Sell NVDA Jun 170 c 58
Sell NVDA JunW4 180 c 68

Sell AAPL Jun 157.5 c 21
Sell TSLA JunW4 400 c 117
 
Sell QQQ Jul 148 c 27

Friday, June 02, 2017

Weekly: Good news and bad news

On Thursday, the bull market accelerates to the upside. The good news is that the rally is broadening. The bad news is that June is typically a flat month, and that the summer rally is often the weakest rally of the year. That said, a lot of stocks look bullish. I roll a bunch of sold puts up in price, and out to July. I leg into an iron condor in AMZN. New long are FDX JPM. Also in the cup half empty category is that I am up for the week, but am falling further behind SPY as it roars ahead.

Here are the trades (p = puts, c = call, sell means sell-to-open, cover means buy-to-close, number near the end of line is price per contract).

Tue Sell NVDA Jul 120 p 83
Sell TSLA Jun 285 p 69
 
Sell AMZN vertical call spread for 100 credit:
Sell AMZN Jul 1110 c 303
Buy AMZN Jul 1130 c 203
 
Roll QQQ: Cover Jun 122 p 03 for 90% profit
Sell QQQ Jul 129 p 35
 
Wed Sell AMZN vertical to turn into Iron Condor:
Sell AMZN Jul 875 p 255
Buy AMZN Jul 855 p 175
 
Sell JPM Jun 77.5 p 21 buy-the-dip

Roll HON: Cover HON Jun 120 p 02
Sell HON Jul 120 p 33
 
Roll SPG: Cover SPG Jun 185 c
Sell SPG Jul 175 c 43
 
Roll BA: Cover BA Jun 165 p 07
Sell BA Jun 177.5 34
 
Thu Bull market rally accelerates to the upside. I roll a bunch of positions to increase long delta. The only loser is the SPY Jun 218 p which was part of a back ratio.

Roll MSFT: Cover MSFT Jun 62.5 p 03
Sell MSFT Jul 62.5 p 20

Rebalance WYNN as it gaps higher
Sell WYNN Jun 124 p 34
Cover WYNN Jun 110 p 05
Cover WYNN Jun 115 p 05

Cover RCL Jun 97.5 p 03
 
Rebalance SPY:
Cover SPY Jun 215 p 05
Sell-to-close SPY Jun 218 p 35
 
Roll IWM:
Cover IWM Jun 123 p 05 
Sell IWM Jul 125 p 46
 
Cover ADSK Jun 95 p 03
 
Cover NVDA Jun 110 p 03
 
Cover WDC Jun 75 p 03

Fri Sell IWM Jul 127 p 42
Sell RCL Jul 97.5 p 23
 
Sell BA Jul 170 p 46
Sell FDX Jul 170 p 40

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Weekly: Bull market

As I often do for Memorial day, here is a link to Trace Adkins song "Arlington" (link1). Take a moment to remember the sacrifices made for this country.

I attended a CANSLIM Investors Business Weekly meetup. The presenters were bullish. At this point, the market and many leading stocks are extended, but this is what a bull market looks like. Many big names such as AAPL, FB, GOOG are up 15% or more since January 1. MCD is another leader. A person can learn a lot by observing (vs. predicting).
 
So I skewed slightly bullish this week. I added to some longs, took a few new positions (BBY, ULTA). Here are the trades (p = puts, c = calls, sell means sell-to-open, number near end is price per contract):

Mon sell NVDA Jun 118 p 38
Sell BA Jun 167.5 36

Sell LMT Jun 260 p 65
Sell BRKB Jun 160 p 52

Sell SPG Jul 135 p 65
Sell BA Jul 160 p 47 second layer today

Tue Sell BRKB Jul 155 p 67

Thu Sell MCD Jul 135 p 34
Sell FB Jun 140 p 19

Fri new positions in ULTA and BBY
Sell TSLA Jun 275 p 64
 
Sell BBY Jul 50 p 26
Sell NVDA Jun 125 p 46

Sell ULTA unbalanced strangle: 
Sell ULTA Jul 260 p 71
Sell ULTA Jun 320 c 54

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Monthly: Just Okay, 42 - 3, Grade B-

I rate this month of trading as just okay. I count 42 winners 3 losers. The losers were for big percentages. Overall, I was up a bit for the month.

Some etfs that I track, best to worst for calendar 2017:
EEM +17.5% Emerging markets equity
GLD +8.9% gold
 
SPY +6.6% S&P 500, U.S. large cap
SLV +5.5% silver
 
TLT +3.8% U.S. 20 year treasury bonds
IWM +0.9% Russell 2000, U.S. small cap

My trading account is +5.5% so I am lagging SPY, ahead of IWM. Gold and silver got a good start in 2017 but have been coming back to the pack. Emerging market equities continue to power ahead.

I expect relatively clear sailing until late September. As always, predictions are for entertainment, managing risk is where the money is made. My predictions tend to be as good as coin flips (not very good).

Friday, May 19, 2017

Weekly: Paying the piper FL

FootLocker earnings blew apart what would have been an okay week. FL dropped on news, resulting in a 2500% loss. This Jekyll and Hyde market has land mines. Hard to say if market Jekyll or Hyde shows up next. I still think that a significant correction of 5% or more, is much more likely in September or October, not during the summer months. 

As always, predictions are for entertainment, and mine tend do about as well as coin flips. Profits are made by managing risk, not making predictions.

Here are the trades (p = puts, c = calls, cover means buy-to-close, sell means sell-to-open, number near the end is price per contract, percentage gain/loss uses option premium as the basis):

Mon Sell NVDA May 150 c 14 hedge
 
Tue Close some positions for $1 for buying power:
Cover (buy-to-close) AAPL May 139 p 01 for 95% gain
Cover NFLX May 135 p 01 for 95% gain
Cover SPY May 214 p 01 for 98% gain
 
Sell TGT May 50 p 17 ahead of earnings
Sell WYNN Jun 115 p 50 rebalance
 
Wed Market gaps down and closes near its lows. I do a bunch of trades, hedging longs, closing a few positions, and adding a SPY put backratio.
 
Sell AAPL MayW4 157.5 c 41
Sell BA Jun 195 c 15
 
Sell TSLA MayW4 335 c 35
Sell SPG Jun 170 c 30
 
Sell BRKB Jun 165 c 112
Sell IWM Jun 143 c 25
 
Sell NVDA Jun 155 c 31
Sell WYNN Jun 135 c 59
 
Sell SPY backratio Jul 212/218: 
Sell x2 SPY Jul 212 p 81 per
Buy 1x SPY Jul 218 p 118 per
 
Cover (buy-to-close) AAPL May 120 p 01 for a 95% profit
Cover TGT May 50 p 01 for a 93% profit
Cover TLSA May 290 p 24 for a 50% profit
 
Thu Cover IWM May 123 p 01 for 98% profit
Cover IWM Jun 150 c 03 for a 75% profit
 
Fri Cover FL May 67.5 p 740 for a 2500% loss
Sell ADSK Jun 95 p 33 earnings
Sell NVDA Jun 110 p 30 rebalance

I'll do my monthly summary post soon.