Monday, March 31, 2014

Investment And Trading Ideas

INVESTMENTS AND TRADING IDEAS – 21st MARCH 2014 | vatic ...

http://vaticinvestmentsandtrading.wordpress.com Fri, 21 Mar 2014 06:48:37 GMT

Dear Friends, For Free Trail, please register at “CONTACT US” page, Please find below the trading ideas performance for 21st March 2014. Trading Ideas for 21 March 2014 Index Previous Close Buy Above Buy Target Buy ...

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Think long-term in investment, especially in stock market - The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com Tue, 25 Mar 2014 18:00:00 GMT

Think long-term in investment, especially in stock market. Given the daily and sometimes extreme fluctuations in the stock market, it takes an investor with both nerve and patience to build and maintain a...

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World's Largest Investors Launch Effort to Engage Global Stock ...

http://www.ceres.org Wed, 26 Mar 2014 13:43:04 GMT

Major institutional investors announced an initiative to engage global stock exchanges via the World Federation of Exchanges on a possible uniform reporting standard for sustainability reporting by all exchange members.

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Oddball Stocks: You need an investing system

http://www.oddballstocks.com Wed, 26 Mar 2014 14:49:00 GMT

Investors seem to have an intrinsic drive to classify themselves. People will say something like 'I'm a mix of Graham and Buffett with a dash of Rockefeller and the temper of Carnegie.' Sometimes these classifications border ...

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3 Stocks Hated By Investors, Misunderstood By Analysts But With ...

http://seekingalpha.com Mon, 24 Mar 2014 15:28:49 GMT

The good thing about the stock market is, that there is never a shortage of such opportunities. The market has a strange way of delivering a constant stream of bargain priced investment opportunities that give investors a ...

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Are Marijuana Stock Investments a Good Idea? - The 420 Times

http://the420times.com Mon, 03 Mar 2014 21:20:30 GMT

We're talking about investing in marijuana-related business stocks. As of right now Wall Street doesn't cover the marijuana market as an industry but professional investors such as Todd Harrison, CEO and founder of ...

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Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Trends And Timing In The Stock Market

From grizzly stock market veterans all to the way to savvy market observers, almost every one would concede that in the business of trading two things are of the essence: timing and trends.

Trends are important because they affect the market in big sweeping tides. Timing, on the other hand, is the learned investor’s inner business radar at work. The more experienced he is, the better is his sense of timing.

Market trends

Market trends are the tendency of particular stock prices to go up or down for considerable periods of time – triggered by some big events, influential persons, or sometimes whatever is the current fashion.

A simple case in point is the September 11 terrorist attack. It had set off a trend where stock market prices for tech companies went down.

Product demands

World events would also have great effects on the stock market. Oil crises and some political problems in concerned countries would definitely have an effect on world oil prices.

To those who have to buy oil and gas, the prices would go high. Those with investments in oil stocks would be raking it in because of the high demand and the high price. Demand for a product affects the price of its stock.

Price fluctuations

The first factor that influences price is the basic law of supply and demand. If the company has only a few shares of stock to sell, and there are a lot of interested buyers, there would a rise in price.

Working the other way around is the fact that when there are a lot of shares but few interested buyers, the stock’s price goes down.

Outside factors

Usually, big world events affect stock market trends – wars, the economy, oil prices and currency collapses. New oil discovery does the same influence on the market, albeit the other way around.

The upward movements in prices of certain market sectors that last for months or years are nicknamed bull trends. Those that are on the down movement trend in prices are called bear trends.

Timing

Timing is that special knack of investors who knows the exact time to buy or to sell any stock. For most investors, timing is simply being alert.

They watch market prices closely, keeping an eye on the rise (or decline) of prices looking for a trend. If they see a trend and the market is rising, they tend to hold onto their stocks.

On the other hand, if the market price of a stock seemed to go on a downward roll, most investors tend to sell their shares because they want to hold onto the profits they have already made.

Timing, for most investors, is actually identifying the trends in the market needed to identify in turn the right time to buy or to sell. The enterprising investor takes advantage of news about the economy, interest rates, conflicts and many others.

Last words

Timing and trends in stock market mean many different things to different investors. Those who want to make a quick dollar do their buying and selling regularly. However, if you are investing for the future, you do not look at the market the same way as everybody.

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Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Online Stock Trading: Gaming The Stock Market In A Down Economy


Trading stocks online has become the new way of doing business. Ordinary everyday citizens such as you and me can now trade stocks like the pros without paying the ridiculous broker fees that are often associated with trading on the stock market. This doesn’t mean there are no fees involved or that you won’t be discouraged from capriciously trading stocks. What it does mean is that you will be able to trade stocks, as you may have never been able to do before because the costs involved in trading were so high that only the wealthiest among us could really afford to work the market to any real advantage.

You will find quite a few companies that are going to compete for your business when it comes to empowering you to trade stocks online. It is best to go with a business that offers education and advice in addition to the ability to trade. There are many big names in the brokerage business that are getting in touch with the technology of today and offering full service brokers and financial advisors in addition to offering new online services that include Internet trading.

If you decide to go with some of the bigger names in the business you should understand that you will pay a little more than you would pay going with many of the lesser name firms and trading companies. The good news is that the bigger names have more to loose after working for decades to establish themselves and develop a good reputation among traders. This means that they are not going to be “fly by night” and are going to work to make sure you have the best possible service from them for your future in the stock market trade.

Many of these firms in addition to offering the ability to buy, sell, and trade online will also offer financial planning for retirement, future expenses, and advice on how to create a fixed income from your investments. They will offer many tips, hints, and advice free of charge on their website while also promoting the services they offer through discounts in hopes of gaining your business for some of the higher ticket transactions that really pay their bills.

Online investment services offer consumers the opportunity to invest with lower commissions and fees which means you bring more of the money home when all is said and done and spend far less on fees and expenses associated with investing. By saving these fees you may be doing yourself a huge service but keep in mind that the invaluable advice of a broker can often mean the difference between mild successes and wild successes. If you can manage the fees it is a good plan to at least consult with a broker or financial advisor or planner once or twice a year in order to get the most out of your investment money.

Online trading is great but you will find that it lacks the personal service you can expect from a financial advisor or a stockbroker. Very little has such a profound impact on your financial future than the ability to receive and follow expert advice. While there is much to read on the Internet by way of advice on investing in the stock market there is also a lot of conflicting information just as there is a great deal of misinformation. This is something that, when possible, is best left to the experts at least until you manage to learn the ropes and have a few successful trades under your belt.

If you have the heart of gambler however, then it is your money you are playing with and your future you are investing. If you are not spending more than you are willing to lose then there is no harm in trying your hand at investing through online brokerage services. You never know but there may be a nice pay out eventually.

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Monday, May 03, 2010

How much do you Gamble on the Stock Market?


Are you addicted the high risks of the stock market? How about taking risks? There are many who are literally addicted to gambling and the stock market is their drug of choice. There are many options available for their gambling pleasure and the tables, it seems, are always open with various markets around the world opening up to US money and the prevalence of Internet trading venues that are available to the average investor through nothing more sophisticated than a computer and a modem.

Day trading is a particular draw for those who are addicted to gambling through trading stocks. It provides the ups and downs very similar to the roll of the dice or the ringing of the slot machines and instant hits and misses. It can even be addictive for those who have never set foot in a casino. Of course this type of investing isn’t the only investing that is very much like gambling. Any high-risk investment is going to bear some similarities, especially those that offer high payouts to those who do succeed on occasion.

The problem is that that addictive gambling can be devastating to friends, family, and finances. If you suspect that you or someone you love has a gambling problem you need to either get help yourself or encourage them to get help. There are many ways that this can be accomplished and anonymous help can be found online. Day traders have gained so much notoriety as potential gambling addicts that gamblers anonymous has begun a support group specifically for those who are addicted to gambling via day trader trading.

If you have the personality that is easily addicted to things such as lottery tickets, slot machines, chocolate candy bars, etc. this doesn’t mean that you can’t ever trade on the stock market it just means that it might be a good idea to avoid some of the higher risk trading and stick with more slow and steady options such as mutual funds, CDs, and the like. Your rewards are likely to be better over time and you aren’t likely to experience the ups and downs that go along with activities that closely resemble gambling.

An addiction to gambling is a serious problem that can ruin a family financially. It is imperative that you get the help you need if you discover that you have a gambling problem. The first suggestion is to close up all stock market accounts that could lead to temptation. Removing temptation is always a great first step when fighting any addiction. You also need to seek support. There are many groups around the country such as gambler’s anonymous that can provide you a close knit support group whenever temptation strikes. If your local chapter has a group that is designed specifically for those who are addicted to gambling through day stock trading that might prove to be the best choice to help you on the road to recovery from your addiction.

If you have been addicted to gambling in the past you should also avoid the temptation that day trading may present. Addictions may be overcome but they are never cured and temptation for many can prove to be the fatal downfall. Do not allow your gambling addiction to take control of your life once again by entering into the world of day trading after working so hard to overcome your addiction in the first place and build a life after the sometimes devastating effects that addictions can bring.

Gambling is nothing new to the world and there is nothing wrong with having the sort of personality that likes to take a gamble on occasion. In fact, there needs to be a little bit of that personality type in every day trader. It’s when the gambling becomes a problem and takes over your life and your ability to make rational decisions about the money and the risks you are taking that it crosses the line between gambling and a gambling problem that borders on or is a gambling addiction. If your gambling is a problem get help straight away.


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Friday, April 23, 2010

Different Types of Stock

The different types of stock are what confuse most first time investors. That confusion causes people to turn away from the stock market altogether, or to make unwise investments. If you are going to play the stock market, you must know what types of stock are available and what it all means!

Common Stock is a term that you will hear quite often. Anyone can purchase common stock, regardless of age, income, age, or financial standing. Common stock is essentially part ownership in the business you are investing in. As the company grows and earns money, the value of your stock rises. On the other hand, if the company does poorly or goes bankrupt, the value of your stock falls. Common stock holders do not participate in the day to day operations of a business, but they do have the power to elect the board of directors.

Along with common stock, there are also different classes of stock. The different classes of stock in one company are often called Class A and Class B. The first class, class A, essentially gives the stock owner more votes per share of stock than the owners of class B stock. The ability to create different classes of stock in a corporation has existed since 1987. Many investors avoid stock that has more than one class, and stocks that have more than one class are not called common stock.

The most upscale type of stock is of course Preferred Stock. Preferred stock isn’t exactly a stock. It is a mix of a stock and a bond. The owner’s of preferred stock can lay claim to the assets of the company in the case of bankruptcy, and preferred stock holders get the proceeds of the profits from a company before the common stock owners. If you think that you may prefer this preferred stock, be aware that the company typically has the right to buy the stock back from the stock owner and stop paying dividends.

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Friday, January 15, 2010

How to Know When to Sell Your Stocks

While quite a bit of time and research goes into selecting stocks, it is often hard to know when to pull out – especially for first time investors. The good news is that if you have chosen your stocks carefully, you won’t need to pull out for a very long time, such as when you are ready to retire. But there are specific instances when you will need to sell your stocks before you have reached your financial goals.

You may think that the time to sell is when the stock value is about to drop – and you may even be advised by your broker to do this. But this isn’t necessarily the right course of action.

Stocks go up and down all the time, depending on the economy…and of course the economy depends on the stock market as well. This is why it is so hard to determine whether you should sell your stock or not. Stocks go down, but they also tend to go back up.

You have to do more research, and you have to keep up with the stability of the companies that you invest in. Changes in corporations have a profound impact on the value of the stock. For instance, a new CEO can affect the value of stock. A plummet in the industry can affect a stock. Many things – all combined – affect the value of stock. But there are really only three good reasons to sell a stock.

The first reason is having reached your financial goals. Once you’ve reached retirement, you may wish to sell your stocks and put your money in safer financial vehicles, such as a savings account.

This is a common practice for those who have invested for the purpose of financing their retirement. The second reason to sell a stock is if there are major changes in the business you are investing in that cause, or will cause, the value of the stock to drop, with little or no possibility of the value rising again. Ideally, you would sell your stock in this situation before the value starts to drop.

If the value of the stock spikes, this is the third reason you may want to sell. If your stock is valued at $100 per share today, but drastically rises to $200 per share next week, it is a great time to sell – especially if the outlook is that the value will drop back down to $100 per share soon. You would sell when the stock was worth $200 per share.

As a beginner, you definitely want to consult with a broker or a financial advisor before buying or selling stocks. They will work with you to help you make the right decisions to reach your financial goals.

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Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Trading Volume Stocks: What One Day Can Bring

Financial experts love to use jargon that confuse and infuriate the newbie. Education is key- before making any trade transaction you should know a little about the market, how it works and the definitions that are associated with it. Taking the time to arm yourself with just a little bit of education can save you some heartache and embarrassment later on. It does not matter whether you trade online or with a traditional broker, you do need to know a few things before you begin.

For instance: the basic definition of the word "volume" when related to stocks is simple. It is the number of stock shares that are traded usually over the course of one trading day. If there are fewer trades than usual for that time period, then they say that the volume is "thin". Likewise, more trading is "heavy". The amount of trading will influence market prices either up or down as stocks change hands. The more trading (heavy trading) that goes on, the higher the price for that stock will rise and vice versa.

Researching the volume of a particular stock before making a transaction is a wise idea and can be done in a number of ways from the traditional to the more modern. In the old days, this information was only available through a broker, but times have changed and many people now handle their own stock portfolios with no financial consultant involvement at all. The do-it-yourself investment wizard can find out a stock's previous day volume by looking in the newspaper or online. Online is probably the better choice if you are dealing with a stock that seems to be having wide variables- information is updated frequently, in some cases as often as every half hour or less.

Knowing volume of your particular stock can be important for several reasons. First, it can give some indication how many buyers and sellers are involved with it. The higher the volume, the more movement has been reported. A sudden jump or decline in volume, especially in one that has been typically steady may indicate an event, either positive or negative that may affect the entire market. Of course, not every little spike or valley on the volume chart of a stock will indicate a major change and sometimes there is little or no reason at all for the change. Do not make any major decisions to buy or sell stocks based on one day's volume information, however. You need to track the stock's average daily volume for several days before finalizing a decision.

Friday, September 25, 2009

How to Know When to Sell Your Stocks

While quite a bit of time and research goes into selecting stocks, it is often hard to know when to pull out – especially for first time investors. The good news is that if you have chosen your stocks carefully, you won’t need to pull out for a very long time, such as when you are ready to retire. But there are specific instances when you will need to sell your stocks before you have reached your financial goals.

You may think that the time to sell is when the stock value is about to drop – and you may even be advised by your broker to do this. But this isn’t necessarily the right course of action.

Stocks go up and down all the time, depending on the economy…and of course the economy depends on the stock market as well. This is why it is so hard to determine whether you should sell your stock or not. Stocks go down, but they also tend to go back up.

You have to do more research, and you have to keep up with the stability of the companies that you invest in. Changes in corporations have a profound impact on the value of the stock. For instance, a new CEO can affect the value of stock. A plummet in the industry can affect a stock. Many things – all combined – affect the value of stock. But there are really only three good reasons to sell a stock.

The first reason is having reached your financial goals. Once you’ve reached retirement, you may wish to sell your stocks and put your money in safer financial vehicles, such as a savings account.

This is a common practice for those who have invested for the purpose of financing their retirement. The second reason to sell a stock is if there are major changes in the business you are investing in that cause, or will cause, the value of the stock to drop, with little or no possibility of the value rising again. Ideally, you would sell your stock in this situation before the value starts to drop.

If the value of the stock spikes, this is the third reason you may want to sell. If your stock is valued at $100 per share today, but drastically rises to $200 per share next week, it is a great time to sell – especially if the outlook is that the value will drop back down to $100 per share soon. You would sell when the stock was worth $200 per share.

As a beginner, you definitely want to consult with a broker or a financial advisor before buying or selling stocks. They will work with you to help you make the right decisions to reach your financial goals.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Trading Stocks Online: Does the Ease of Use Make it More Dangerous?

The majority of American homes have at least one computer, and of those, most are connected to the Internet for at least one hour or more each day of the year. Because of the ease of having the entire world right there at your fingertips, more and more business is conducted from the home - from ordering Junior's birthday gift to performing job duties. It was only a matter of time before the financial world started grabbing some of the Internet action- now a large portion of every day's trading actions are performed online. Whether you go through a broker or execute your trade on your own, online trading can be an interesting way to manage your investments.

Because the Internet is there twenty-four hours a day, it can become very easy to get carried away by the whole online trading concept. Before you even log onto the first site, and before you even look at the first trade online, there are some things you must know and understand. Knowing these basics can make your online trading experience satisfying and hopefully, financially rewarding.

If you have never worked with stocks before it might be advisable to work with an online broker before going out on your own. The stock market should not be a learn-as- you-go experience, especially not with the current state of the economy. Do your research if you wish, but work with a broker until you are more confident in your own abilities.

You should talk with your broker about your own personal investment goals. Know what all of the risks are when dealing with the stock market. And by all means, know your own limits. Do not try to trade above your financial capabilities- if you choose the wrong stock, or the market fluctuates you can put your family in real financial danger.

Online trading can allow you to research and buy your stock in one simple step, or to do the research only, using a broker to buy the actual stock. Beyond the other tips that apply to all stock trading, both traditional and online, there are other special considerations for online trading, including knowing that you might not be able to instantly execute or cancel orders- both may be delayed by as much as a few hours. You also need to know if quotes and other information given is delayed or given in real time. (This will usually be clearly denoted on the stock site.) What are the limits to your trades- do you have a daily cap while working online? And because you are dealing with an entity that sometimes has technical issues, you must ask about website crashes and what that can mean to your ability to make or cancel orders.

Finally, before making your first trade with an online company, check out their privacy policy, find out about commission and transaction fees and review the customer service and complaint policy.

Article Written By J. Foley

Friday, June 05, 2009

Price Trading: Gambits, Tactics and Good Business Sense

Price trading can be tricky at best, even for the most astute financial mind. Watching the tracking trends of certain stock and thinking you have it predicted down to the last few percentage points of accuracy, only to have it fall completely off the charts, is not only heart breaking, it can also lead to financial ruin. Although trend trading can provide an educational leg-up on the competition, it does not always stop the trader from being faced with financial doom when a market takes an unexpected and therefore unpredictable header toward the basement.

The economy is in a major downward spiral, and most indicators are showing that, however some price trading charts are showing some stocks are in fairly stable shape. How this can be should be a puzzle to all but the most novice among us. The stock futures are showing down trends, and the realistic and responsible trader will adjust trading activity to reflect this.

Price trading charts are often confusing and more, they contradict themselves. Using financial software for analysis of these charts can help, but even that may prove to be ineffective when there is just too much data for the computer to sort through. Price trading can be lucrative, if you know what you are doing, and can make sense of what the market is doing.

With price trading, the main consideration is timing. You must make your move, no matter what financial instrument you are dealing with, at the optimum time to gain the best price. Knowing that there will be a huge demand on one stock in one week's time and holding onto that stock to sell during the rush makes sense, but selling it one week before the demand hits does not. As with any financial activity, especially with the current economic situation, you must know your limits and your financial caps. Do not exceed your own budgetary limits and put yourself at the risk for financial ruin. Do not make trades that you do not fully understand. Do your homework and the necessary legwork before beginning any trading activities. Work with a broker before heading out to take on the financial world on your own. Take educational seminars and read all of the financial information that is available to you, either in hard copy or online.

Do not allow yourself to get caught up in the thrilling rush of one or two successful trades. A little financial knowledge can be a bad thing, especially if it leads to risky, undisciplined behaviors on your part.

Article Written By J. Foley

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Consumers feel better, and so does the stock market

12:29 PM, May 26, 2009

Consumers are feeling somewhat better, and that's making investors feel better too.

The stock market rose for the first time in a week today as unexpectedly strong consumer-confidence data sparked optimism that spending by Americans could support a hoped-for second-half economic recovery.

The Dow Jones industrial average is up about 175 points, bolstered by stocks of consumer-discretionary companies such as restaurant, hotel and clothing chains. Earlier in the day the blue-chip gauge was up by almost 220 points.

An index of consumer sentiment spurted this month to 54.9, its highest level since September, according to the Conference Board, a New York-based research group. That was up from a revised 40.8 last month and far outdistanced the 42.6 level anticipated on average by economists.

“While confidence is still weak by historical standards, as far as consumers are concerned, the worst is now behind us,” said Lynn Franco, who heads the organization’s consumer research center.

The increase, the third in a row since the index hit a low in February, partly reflected an improved perception of the employment market.

The so-called expectations index, a measure of the conditions consumers foresee in the coming months, surged to 72.3 from 51.

Investors hope that resilient consumers can help pull the economy out of recession later this year and pad badly bruised earnings at major retailers.

“Higher consumer confidence plus the boost to disposable income in Q2 from a tax cut and extra Social Security payments make it more likely that a 'breakout' number on retail sales will be recorded soon after the weak readings of the last several months,” economists at UBS wrote in a note to clients.

Consumer-discretionary stocks are up more than 3.5% today, the best performance among 10 major sectors tracked by Standard & Poor’s Corp.

Hotel chains are doing especially well. Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide has climbed 8.8% today, Wyndham Worldwide is up 8.4% and Wynn Resorts is up 6.7%. In other sectors, Home Depot is 4.4% higher and JPMorgan Chase is up 5.6%.

But there is only so much that consumer confidence alone can help stocks. One reason consumers are feeling better is that their portfolios have rebounded sharply since stock indexes hit multiyear lows in early March. So today’s rally is relying on something akin to a perpetual energy machine.

Moreover, there are big questions as to whether consumers can come to the market’s rescue.

The most obvious is the continued free fall in housing prices, which was reinforced with new data released Monday.

The widely followed S&P/Case-Shiller index of home prices in 20 cities slumped 18.7% from March 2008 through March 2009. (Los Angeles was off 22.3%.)

More than that, the job market remains weak and consumers have boosted their saving and begun whittling their debt.

“The type of environment we’re in, and coming out of, is unlike anything we’ve seen in our lifetimes,” said Dan Greenhaus, market analyst at Miller Tabak & Co. in New York. “How consumers perform in a massive deleveraging phase remains to be seen.”

-- Walter Hamilton
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Thursday, May 21, 2009

Day Trading For a Living

Some people love numbers, and the thought of learning a whole new language of technical jargon thrills them to no end. They think with the analytical side of their brain at all times, and can be counted on to see the big picture, no matter what else is going on around them. These people have the super speedy brains of a numbers-based genius, nerves than can be slightly shaken, but never stirred, and just a touch of brass; they are the perfect person to take on day trading for a living.

Do not get the idea that these are just some kind of young, hip cowboy types that roam in making trades at random, raking in the big financial rewards as they do so- they must truly know their stuff and they have to have an innate sixth sense ability before heading out into the day trading world. That world, by the way, is online, so heading out is a misnomer as well. Day trading activity takes place daily, online with the more short-term trades that they move quickly. They are literally traders, rather than investors, but can reap huge rewards in a relatively short period of time. Of course, day trading for a living does carry some fairly large monetary risks, so you must know a little about the market, your limits and what your loss cap is before even beginning.

Day traders do not always buy and sell their stocks in the course of the day, some may be held onto for a few days or even a week or more, in an activity commonly known as "swing trading". Doing day trading for a living will probably encompass both types of trading activity, especially on days when certain stocks are fairly flat. Knowing the trends of stocks is always a wise idea, and while the day trader moves quickly, without the wait and see approach of a more traditional trader, they do know and understand these trends.

Before thinking about day trading for a living you must know more than just the stock market and your own capabilities. A day trader must function under certain regulations which include minimum equity requirements for a day trader account, as the day trade buying power of that account and what defines a trader as a day trader. You do not want to begin your new career with SEC trouble looming over your head. Check out the regulations and the requirements. Do your homework and possibly buy and download the applicable software to your home or office computer. Day trading for a living can be lucrative, or it can be the financial death of you, know what you are getting into before you get into it.

Article Written By J. Foley

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Stocks Finish Higher, Led by Techs

The market posted its fourth straight weekly gain despite more gloomy news on the labor market and a decline in service-sector sentiment

U.S. stocks closed higher Friday, sending the market upward for a fourth straight week. The advance was led by tech issues after Research in Motion (RIMM) posted robust fourth-quarter results.

On Friday, the 30-stock Dow Jones industrial average finished higher by 39.51 points, or 0.50%, at 8,017.59. The broad S&P 500 index moved up 8.12 points, or 0.97%, to 842.50. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite index added 19.24 points, or 1.20%, to 1,621.87. On the New York Stock Exchange, 21 stocks were higher in price for every 10 that declined. Nasdaq breadth was 16-11 positive.

Treasuries plunged. The dollar index eased. Gold and crude oil futures fell.

The stock market's higher close followed earlier bouts of profit taking, as investors digested news of another hefty drop in nonfarm payrolls in March while preparing for next week's start of the first-quarter corporate earnings season. The gains extended rallies from earlier this week that drove all three major market indexes up more than 20% off their bear-market lows in early March.

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke discussed the Fed's balance sheet, which has expanded in bid to help the economy work out of recession.

In a speech Friday, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said the Fed has used its balance sheet "prudently," in conjunction with a multiplicity of new programs. He also cited the drop to record lows in mortgage rates as a sign that the Fed's actions are having their intended effect.

Bernanke also indicated the Fed has taken care to design its programs so that they will be unwound as markets and the economy revive. The speech detailed the various Fed programs as it essentially retooled its balance sheet to meet the needs of the credit markets.

In economic news Friday, the U.S. ISM nonmanufacturing index slipped to 40.8 in March from February's 41.6. The index is up from its all-time low of 37.4 in November 2008, but is well off its 49.6 print a year ago. However, the business activity index improved to 44.1 versus 40.2 (it was 52.2 in March 2008). New orders fell to 38.8 from 40.7. The employment index slid to 32.3 from 37.3. New export orders dipped to 39.0 from 40.0. Prices paid fell to 39.1 from 48.1. The composite manufacturing and nonmanufacturing edged down to 40.3 from 40.9.

"The data disappointed expectations for modest improvement and that should give Treasuries a little boost at the expense of stocks," says Action Economics.

U.S. nonfarm payrolls lost 663,000 jobs in March, and a bit stronger than the 650,000 expected. The unemployment rate rose to 8.5% from 8.1% the month before, though about as expected. While February's 651,000 decline was not revised, January was revised down to -741,000 (previously 655,000), with job losses averaging 685,000 in the first quarter. Average hourly earnings rose 0.2%. Average weekly hours dipped to 33.2 from 33.3. Total goods-producing sector lost 305,000 jobs, with a 161,000 decline in manufacturing, and an 126,000 drop in construction. Business services lost 133,000 jobs. Only health care added jobs, about 8,000.

"The headline data were about in line with forecasts. While the data indicates the job weakness continues, the report failed to realize the worst fears of a greater than 700,000 drop in jobs," says Standard & Poor's senior economist Beth Ann Bovino.

Monday, March 30, 2009

The persistent rally of stock market

The stock market
enjoyed an unusually strong week with the BSE Sensitive Index finishing 12.06% or 1,081.81 points higher, and the Nifty ending
10.74% up. The CNX Midcap Index underperformed the main indices with a relatively modest gain of 5.77%.

Tata Steel was the biggest winner among the index stocks with a 26.9% gain. The other index stocks to go up included ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Sterlite Industries and State Bank with gains falling between 19.3% and 18.0%. None of the index stocks declined last week.

Unitech was the biggest winner among the more heavily traded non-index stocks with a 33.2% gain. The other non-index stocks to go up included PNB, Aban Offshore, Lanco Infratech, Axis Bank, Sesa Goa, JSW Steel and Yes Bank with gains falling between 32.4% and 23.6%.

Akruti City was the biggest loser among the more heavily traded non-index stocks with a 51.6% loss. The other non-index stocks to go down included Edserv Softsystems, MindTree, Crompton Greaves, Tulip Telecom, Everonn Systems , Firstsource Solutions and Gujarat NRE Coke with losses falling between 22.1% and 2.9%.

Intermediate Trend

The market remains in the intermediate uptrend which started on March 6 when the Sensitive Index made a bottom at 8,047. The levels below which the uptrend would end are now a considerable distance down at 8,867 for the Sensitive Index, 2,739 for the Nifty and 3,190 for the CNX Midcap Index.

These would be revised upwards to the level where the next minor decline bottoms out. Most global markets are in fairly strong intermediate uptrends, and are typically somewhere between their one-month and three-month highs.

Long-Term Trend

The market's long-term trend is down. The index has been in a 3,300-point range between 7,700 and 11,000 since the end of October, without any clear sequence of rising or falling tops and bottoms. It would therefore be best to take 11,000 as the level to cross for the Sensitive Index for a bull market confirmation. The corresponding level for the Nifty is 3,250, and that for the CNX Midcap Index is 4,000. (Figures have been rounded upwards).

Almost 25% of the market's heavily traded stocks are now at two-month highs or better, and over 15% are above their 200-day moving averages. These could be the first signs that the bear phase may have already ended. In any event, quite a few stocks may have already left the worst behind them.

Trading & Investing Strategies

The market is currently in an intermediate uptrend, and long-term investing should be put on hold until the next intermediate downtrend develops and has run for a week or two. It will be a good idea to hold on to past and recent investments, and not get out of them as this rally progresses. This portfolio building exercise suggested over the last few months is simply to buy stocks at low levels, and not in anticipation of an early end to the bear market - even though this now looks like a distinct possibility.

Global Perspective

The major trends of all global markets remain down, but the intermediate trends of almost all the markets are up. The Dow would enter a bull market (major uptrend) if it were to climb above 9,500. The Shanghai Index has crossed its 200-day moving average, and a global bull phase will become a real possibility if other indices follow suit.

The BSE Sensitive Index had lost 37.5% in the twelve months that ended on Thursday, keeping it at the 21st place among 35 wellknown global indices considered for the study. Chile continues to head the list, but with a 11.6% loss. New Zealand, South Korea, Israel and Spain follow. The Dow Jones Industrial Average has lost 35.6% and the NASDAQ Composite has lost 30.4% over the same period. (These rankings do not take exchange rate effects into consideration).

(The author is an independent technicals analyst)