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Skew: Did Option Players Get The Sell-Off Right This Time?

Skew: Did Option Players Get The Sell-Off Right This Time?

If you want to figure out the next move the markets will make, I have a secret to tell you about. Option traders have a trick that most investors and traders have never heard of, let alone understand. It is a little thing called skew, which is a real time view of where money is being bet. (In technical terms, skew is "the risk associated with an increase in the probability of outlier returns, two or more standard deviations below the mean.")    Winning bets on skew requires outlier moves,...

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Define Risk On Crude Oil Play With Options

Define Risk On Crude Oil Play With Options

The markets have calmed down a bit from last week, but there is still a cloud of uncertainty hanging overhead. The equity markets have done quite a job of getting back most of the recent sell off. Last week the S&P 500 had a nearly 120 point range from Monday to Thursday, with a 50 point range on Thursday alone. The market closed up 30 points from the low on Thursday, which may have given investors a reason to continue the buying trend the next session. Friday’s session was a volatile...

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Psychology: How To Stop Trading Hesitation

Psychology: How To Stop Trading Hesitation

Procrastination, and in particular trading hesitation, over your trade set-ups is very frustrating and detrimental to the health of your trading account and your emotional and physical well being. Whenever we observe behavior patterns that prevent us from trading profitably value conflicts born out of incorrect assumptions about your reality are always at the root of the issue. In a world that is changing in all areas faster than is comfortable for the conditioned limited mind, hesitation...

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10 Facts About The Facebook Chart

10 Facts About The Facebook Chart

If you’re like me, you are probably on Facebook (FB) often checking updates on friends and family. FB is an incredibly fun stock to trade. It is quite volatile and in my opinion, has some serious moves left in it.  Here are 10 facts about the FB chart. #1 On October 22, 2014 FB made an all-time high of $79.85. #2 The $79 price range is where FB experienced some strong selling pressure just three weeks ago. #3 FB bounced very nicely off the 100-day simple moving average on October 14, 2014...

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Oil May Not Be Done Going Down Just Yet

Oil May Not Be Done Going Down Just Yet

The United States Oil Fund LP (USO), a crude oil ETF, is down 22.54% from the highs of 2014. This turn has taken place over the last four months amidst a rally in the PowerShares DB U.S. Dollar Index Bullish ETF (UUP) in the same time period. An end to the Fed’s Quantitative easing program and hints at a rate hike in 2015 are the likely cause for the price action we’ve seen in the U.S. dollar. Now that oil is officially in a bear market is it time to step in or is there more downside to...

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Trading Psychology: Stay Calm When The Fastballs Fly

Trading Psychology: Stay Calm When The Fastballs Fly

A client of mine sent me a bio yesterday on Rod Dedeaux, who was the baseball coach for USC for 45 seasons. Dedeaux was a legendary leader, chalking up more national titles and wins (1332) than any other coach of his day. 200 of his players went on to play professional ball. Dedeaux neither lost his temper nor disrespected or denigrated anyone. He cultivated the ability to befriend, encourage and motivate, rather than criticize and coerce. His enthusiasm was contagious as was his belief in...

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Trading: Communication Is The Key To Lowering Your Taxes

Trading: Communication Is The Key To Lowering Your Taxes

How many times have we been told that communication is the key to a good marriage or a good friendship? In the business world, we are told that communication is the key to success. I am a big believer in the power of open communication. It’s one of the main reasons that Guardian Accounting Group has a flat fee structure. We never want our clients to be afraid of talking to us about a tax situation because of an hourly fee. Clients are encouraged to call us with all their tax questions and...

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Market Profile®: 3 Important Ways It Can Improve Your Trading

Market Profile®: 3 Important Ways It Can Improve Your Trading

You can look at markets and make trading decisions in many ways. Market Profile® has been an indispensable tool in my trading career. While Market Profile is a lifelong study, three characteristics I use to increase the probabilities of making successful trades are areas of acceptance and rejection, trade location, and context. Areas of Acceptance and Rejection The most useful characteristic of Market Profile is how it paints the picture of acceptance and rejection of price over time. It...

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The Case For Gold: “The Good Old Days”

The Case For Gold: “The Good Old Days”

In a recent interview, Rick Rule of Sprott Asset Management made a strong case that this bear market may be looked back on as “the good old days” in terms of the golden opportunity to invest in the precious metals sector. Rule said there has been “carnage” in the precious metals markets over the past three weeks, adding to “slow motion” carnage since 2012. He said it is “Difficult for people to see benefit in this type of carnage.” However, he argued, “Three or four years from now, we’ll...

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Gaining Viral Profits With Global Health Panics

Gaining Viral Profits With Global Health Panics

When fears grip the public about the spread of virulent diseases such as Ebola and other malicious conditions, it is time to assess the situation and enact strategies to enhance safety…health-wise and financially as well.World health authorities believe that that Ebola and other contagious maladies will have a significant effect on the world economy. The U.S. is enacting emergency procedures and our healthcare industry is gearing up for what will be a difficult challenge for society at...

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Gold Bulls Could Pause Ahead Of Fed Meeting

Gold Bulls Could Pause Ahead Of Fed Meeting

The gold market has posted impressive price action in the past few weeks in the face of a rising U.S. dollar and in this week's case a major rebound in U.S. stock indices. See Figure 1 below. The gold market made a double bottom a few weeks back at the $1182-83 area from last December. Gold’s rebound, in my view, is largely due to safe-haven buying due to the lack in confidence in fiat currencies as central banks in Europe. Also, China has adopted more easing measures. Big Players Hedge...

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Don't Get Trapped By Stop Hunters: How To Survive The Head Fake

Don't Get Trapped By Stop Hunters: How To Survive The Head Fake

Have you ever been in a trade that was a textbook setup and you thought you landed a great trade when all of a sudden it hit your stop, took you out and then it worked and hit your target?   I am sure you felt a bit of unsettled emotions as this played out before you on your trading screens at your desk.  As a trader you have to get smarter and learn from these little tricks the big boys do to throw us out of our trade.  Trade Example On October 17, 2014 COF (Capital One Financial) gapped...

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