Here you will find information and news about stock markets, online trading, investing, stock brokers. Great collection of tools for everyday trading, like real time stock quotes, interactive stock charts, options calculator, earnings calendar, market comments and suggetions for good reading material makes your trading day profitable!

Friday, July 22, 2005

Update 6: Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

I sold the last part of SNDK puts also with $0.15.

The total price for the options position was $5.30. This makes the total profit of +30.86% as I purchased the options with $4.05.

Update 5: Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle
Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

Update 5: Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

Huh, busy morning... SNDK spiked up very nicely and hit even $32.81.

I closed most of the SNDK options position.

I sold the calls with $5.00 and half of the puts with $0.15. Therefore, I got $5.15 in total, which is 27.16% more than I paid ($4.05).

I am still holding half of the puts. So, I may still get some more money out of the position.

See also:
Update 4: Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle
Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Update: Today's Earnings: GOOG, MSFT

MSFT, GOOG trading down on earnings report. I was fool enough to close GOOG short on the very first spike on the results. Currently, GOOG trading at $306.73; MSFT at $25.80.

Sandisk (SNDK) trading up, at $30.

See also:
Today's Earnings: GOOG, MSFT

Update Live Action: Google (GOOG) short

Buying back GOOG at $315.80. Total loss of -0.76%.

See also:
Live Action: Google (GOOG) short

Live Action: Google (GOOG) short

I would short Google (GOOG) right now at $313.43. See links for the reason doing so.

NB! This trade is not with real money, I am just checking my trading strategy.

See also:
Google Ahead of Earnings
Today's Earnings: GOOG, MSFT

Update 4: Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

Implied volatility of SNDK options has surged today and it is possible to get $4.35-$4.50 for the options position I have. The buying price was $4.05. But I still expect big move on the earnings, so I won't sell it right now.

See also:
Update 3: Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle
Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

Stocks to Watch: EBAY

eBay (EBAY) currently struggling with $42 resistance. Keep an eye on EBAY, it may go down from this level.

Google Ahead of Earnings

Bernie Schaeffer has written an article about Google (GOOG). A great and interesting reading, indeed! He has some nice charts on the site to illustrate his story. The basic idea: everyone is very optimistic and there is no fear of negative report, therefore, Google is very vulnerable.

He shares basically the same fear that I have (read Today's Earnings: GOOG, MSFT).

Schaeffer on Charts: Google Ahead of Earnings
Schaeffer's Investment Research
Bernie Schaeffer
7/21/2005 8:50 AM ET
There is no fury like an investor scorned. Just take a look at Yahoo! (YHOO: sentiment, chart, options) and Intel (INTC: sentiment, chart, options) yesterday. Both companies reported earnings that were "in line" with the Street estimate, yet both got slammed - YHOO plunged 11.5 percent, while INTC got off relatively easy with a 4.6-percent drop.

Heading into GOOG's earnings report, options speculators have loaded up on call positions. The fact that call and put implieds are running neck and neck reflects very little fear of a negative report. In fact, I infer just the opposite - the dreaded and dangerous high expectations.

Not surprisingly, there has been a continued drop in the stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR), which now sits at 0.59. While we don't yet have a full year's worth of data for GOOG's SOIR to calculate an annual percentile ranking, the current reading is only slightly above its all-time low of 0.52 and continues to hover in the lower quartile. Such an abundance of call positions ahead of the company's earnings report sets the expectation bar at a level that GOOG may be hard pressed to clear.
Read further:
Schaeffer's Investment Research: Schaeffer on Charts: Google Ahead of Earnings

See also:
Today's Earnings: GOOG, MSFT

ViroPharma (VPHM) Intraday Sell-off

There was a ViroPharma (VPHM) sell-off today, see the 1 minute chart below. It was probably just a trading error. Did someone lost his job because of that?

Does it look similar to Intel (INTC) sell off 2 months ago? They have exactly the same formation.

Chart courtesy of

See also:
Intel Intraday Sell-off

Stocks to Watch: ADLR

ADLR spikes up with increased volume: $10.22. If no news follow and it loses its momentum, ADLR is a short opportunity, otherwise it's a long.

Today's Earnings: GOOG, MSFT

Two IT giants and rivals are coming with earnings results today after close: Microsoft (MSFT) and Google (GOOG).

I must be crazy, but I just can't share the optimism what is dominating right now and don't believe that Google manages to beat the market expectations. The sentiment is so positive for Google at the moment that even a slight slip in its report should send the shares down-wards. If you look at the risk/profit ratio, I think it's not a bad idea to buy a few puts ahead of Google's earnings. Although, I am not sure yet, if I do it myself. If Google should fail, there are support areas at $290 and $280. Google shares are trading at $316.39 (+1.41%).

Chart courtesy of

Stocks to Watch: DECK

DECK beats earnings, revenue estimates (EPS $0.21, $0.06 better than analyst estimates). DECK short ratio is 38.30% according to Yahoo! Finance. Possible short squeeze coming. Currently trading between $29 and $30 (around +10%) in pre-market.

Update (July 21, 2005 8:10 AM):

Chart courtesy of

Does the gap need filling?

Update 4: Live Action: Long NeuroMetrix Inc (NURO)

Some fresh news about NeuroMetrix (NURO).

Today, NeuroMetrix started with an Outperform at RBC Capital, target was set to $28.
RBC Capital initiates NURO with an Outperform and $28 tgt, saying through sales of their novel NC-stat, the co is demonstrating that nerve conduction studies are not solely the domain of the Neurologist, but can be performed at the point-of-care, generating an attractive revenue stream for the practice. Firm believes co is one of the most compelling small cap stories in diagnostics today and they are buyers at current levels.
NeuroMetrix closed at $22.80 yesterday. NURO has raised already 40% since I made a trade a little more than a month ago (See Live Action: Long NeuroMetrix Inc (NURO)). We will probably see continuous strength in NURO shares on RBC Capital comments.

See also:
Update 3: Live Action: Long NeuroMetrix Inc (NURO)
Update: Analysis: NeuroMetrix Inc (NURO)
Live Action: Long NeuroMetrix Inc (NURO)

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

A Little Q & A

Michael, the author of Trader Mike blog, gives some insight into his trading strategy:
The two main scans that I use (top Nasdaq % gainers & losers) are set for a minimum volume of 200,000, minimum price of $5/share and volume > 50% of the 20 average volume. I usually bump the volume surge filter up to > 100% of average volume after 10 or 10:30 and on days like yesterday I'll bump it up again later in the day. I don't really know where 200,000 came from. I've been using it on my TC2000 scans for years so it's just stuck in my mind.
Read further:
Trader Mike: A Little Q & A

Update 3: Live Action: Millipore Corp (MIL)

MIL Millipore: Hearing stock downgraded intraday at tier-1 firm on valuation (61.38 +2.88) (

MIL made plunged from $63.73 down to $61 within some minutes.

It turned out to be quite a bad idea to play on MIL earnings, because MIL jumped 9% today, but I am still holding the position. There is not much to lose anymore at the moment, and I thikn the downside area is wider.

Update (July 20, 2005 11:59 AM):
There are also rumors that Merrill cuts MIL:
MIL Millipore: hearing stock cut intraday at Merrill on valuation.. no confirm (61.38 +2.38) (

See also:
Update 2: Live Action: Millipore Corp (MIL)
Live Action: Millipore Corp (MIL)

Cramer's 'Mad Money' Recap: Biotech in the Spotlight

Cramer's 'Mad Money' Recap: Biotech in the Spotlight
By Staff
7/19/2005 7:23 PM EDT
There is a tug of war for dollars on Wall Street this week. The tug of war is between technology and biotech. Technology won on Monday night. But Tuesday night belonged to biotech.

But Jim Cramer told his "Mad Money" viewers on CNBC that biotech will do especially well in the future -- especially if investors compare them with the Big Pharma stocks of today.

"We want to be looking for stocks that will be in our kids' medicine cabinets," he said. Pfizer and Merck have the stuff that is in cabinets today, he said.

What's more, Cramer said that Big Pharma doesn't innovate anymore.
There is also a list of stocks Cramer was bullish or bearish on.

Read further: Cramer's 'Mad Money' Recap: Biotech in the Spotlight

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Today's Earnings: YHOO

Yahoo (YHOO) reports in-line:
EPS $0.13 vs $0.13 Reuters consensus, revenues $875 mln vs $881.02 mln Reuters consensus. YHOO sees FY05 revenues $3.6-3.7 bln vs $3.69 bln Reuters consensus.

Still, Yahoo nearly 4 points lower (-9.75%), in symphaty Google (GOOG) 8 points lower (-2.55%) and InfoSpace (INSP) over 1 point lower (-3.32%).

See the link below for some thoughts I wrote about Internet stocks (mainly Google).

See also:
Is Google the next eBay?

Update 2: Live Action: Millipore Corp (MIL)

Millipore released its earnings, a little better than estimated by analysts (both, EPS and revenue). We won't see sell-off on these results, but we still might see some setback, because MIL shares have raised quite vertically since April. There is not much activity in after hours, so we'll have to wait until tomorrow morning to see the reaction.

Business Wire (via Yahoo! Finance):
BILLERICA, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--July 19, 2005--Millipore Corporation (NYSE:MIL - News) announced today that its second quarter revenues were $245 million, up 9 percent from the same period of 2004.

Second quarter earnings were $0.47 per share, compared with $0.57 per share last year. Excluding these items, non-GAAP earnings for the quarter would have been $0.59 per share.

He [Martin D. Madaus, Millipore's Chairman and CEO] added: "Our prospects are excellent. We are implementing the new growth strategy for Millipore that we presented to analysts and investors on June 29th. Since that meeting we have announced two acquisitions that strengthen our position in the bioprocess market with new services and new product offerings. We are also continuing efforts to consolidate our manufacturing plants and accelerate R&D innovation. We're off to a great start."
See also:
Update: Live Action: Millipore Corp (MIL)
Live Action: Millipore Corp (MIL)
Yahoo! Finance (Business Wire): Millipore Revenues Up 9 Percent in Second Quarter, 11 Percent for First Half of 2005

Update: Live Action: Millipore Corp (MIL)

Millipore (MIL) is currently trading at $58.29 (-0.88%). The Aug $55 puts I bought with $0.65 are trading at $0.65/$0.80.

Millipore announces its earnings today after close, and I am not selling the puts today. I would get some profit, but I still think MIL is overbought and the earnings should calm down it a little.

Expectations according to Yahoo! Finance:
Current quarter:
EPS $0.58 ($0.56-$0.61), revenue $239.36M ($233M-$245.34M)
Next quarter:
EPS $0.56 ($0.52-$0.58), revenue $230.75M ($226.82M-$236.20M)
Current year:
EPS $2.48 ($2.43-$2.52), revenue $963.75M ($952.7M-$977.79M)
Next year:
EPS $2.79 ($2.73-$2.90), revenue $1.01B ($950M-$1.07B)

I can listen the live conference call on Yahoo! Finance site:
Yahoo! Finance: Millipore Corp. Earnings Conference Call (Q2 2005), scheduled to start 5:30 PM Eastern time.

See also:
Live Action: Millipore Corp (MIL)
Yahoo! Finance: Analyst Estimates for Millipore Cp
Yahoo! Finance: Millipore Corp. Earnings Conference Call (Q2 2005)

Update 3: Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

I just purchased the same amount of SNDK Aug $27.5 puts I already had. So, I have 2 puts for every call option.

Update (July 19, 2005 1:50 PM):
I forgot to mention the price... I paid $1.05 for the additional puts. So, the total value of the option position is $1.40 (calls) + $1.60 (puts I) + $1.05 (puts II) = $4.05.

See also:
Update 2: Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle
Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

Update 2: Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

SNDK trading at $28.47 (+4.29%). I will probably buy some $27.5 puts soon to equalize the straddle position.

See also:
Update: Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle
Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

Update: Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

SNDK shares consolidating at $28.22 (+3.37%), day high at $28.24. Soon there must be a break out in either direction. I see a bigger possibility to move upwards.

See also:
Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

Stocks to Watch: GOOG

Google (GOOG) makes new all time high, trading at $309.70 (+3.40%).

Don't short junk - implications of News Corp's purchase of Intermix

David Jackson writes in The Internet Stock Blog about Intermix Media (MIX) acquisition by News Corp (NWS).
News Corp (ticker: NWS) announced that it is acquiring Intermix Media (ticker: MIX) for $580 million. At the same time, Intermix announced that it will acquire the 47% of social networking site MySpace it doesn't already own for $69 million.

All this has clear implications for shorting Internet stocks: you can't short stocks due to questionable business practices if the company might be acquired at a premium for its clean properties. And with the number of potential acquirers growing, the premiums are increasing.
Read further:
The Internet Stock Blog: Don't short junk - implications of News Corp's purchase of Intermix (NWS, MIX)

Is Kirkland's a Takeover target?

William Meade at The Retail Stock Blog speculates that Kirkland's (KIRK) is a takeover target.
Kirkland's Inc (ticker: KIRK), a specialty home decor retailer, represents the exact type of a company a private equity or LBO fund would be interested in acquiring.

Kirkland's Inc. is currently selling near its three year low at $9.07, yet the stock is seeing huge insider/institutional buying (almost $3.2 mn worth) during the last two months.. Endownment Capital of Delaware has quietly been buying large amount of Kirk stock during, even as the share price has been falling.
Kirkland's shares plunged more than 10% some days ago on a warning. Currently, it's trading at $8.28.
JACKSON, Tenn., July 12 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Kirkland's, Inc. (Nasdaq: KIRK - News) today announced a revised sales and earnings outlook for the 13-week period ending July 30, 2005. The Company now expects to report a net loss of $0.29 to $0.33 per diluted share, compared with a net loss of $0.14 per diluted share in the prior-year period.
Commenting on the announcement, Robert Alderson, Kirkland's Chairman of the Board, said, "We have continued to experience weak traffic and sales trends in our stores. While the home furnishings retail environment has been challenging, we believe that our sales results are primarily due to key areas of our product assortment that have not generated excitement with our customers."

"Since the arrival of our new CEO Jack Lewis last month, we have conducted a thorough assessment of all merchandise categories in order to establish a clear merchandise strategy and direction for the second half of 2005. We see meaningful areas of opportunity, yet we also acknowledge that we are facing a limited time frame to affect our merchandise offering before the holiday selling season begins."
It all depends how well the management is going to change the strategy. If this was only an one-time setback, it makes KIRK even better candidate for takeover, because the shares are much cheaper now. But in other hand, the risk is also higher, if Kirkland's doesn't manage to get back to normal.

Any bets?

Read further:
The Retail Stock Blog: Is Kirkland's a Takeover target?
Yahoo! Finance: Kirkland's Revises Outlook for Second Quarter

Monday, July 18, 2005

Today's Earnings: IBM, SAFC

Some earnings today after hours:
IBM prelim $1.12 vs $1.04 Reuters consensus; revs $22.3 bln vs $22.39 bln Reuters consensus
IBM prelim reports gross margin 39.4% vs 38.7% street expectation (Briefing)
IBM jumped on the results, trading at $84.11
SAFC prelim $1.46, $0.26 better than $1.20 consensus (Briefing)
SAFC halted

Update (July 18, 2005 4:47 PM):
ICU Medical (ICUI) reports Q2 EPS of $0.31, vs Reuters single analyst estimate of $0.22; on revs of $40.7 mln vs single analyst estimate of $37 mln. Co sees Y05 EPS of $1.06-1.08, vs estimate of $0.95; on revs of $140 mln, vs estimate of $146 mln. (Briefing)
ICUI surged up to $34.50

Live Action: Sandisk (SNDK) straddle

I bought Sandisk (SNDK) straddle (Aug $27.50) with $3.00 (calls $1.40, puts $1.60). Sandisk will announce its results on Thursday.

Live Action: Millipore Corp (MIL)

I bought a few amount of Millipore Corp (MIL) Aug $55 puts with $0.65 (I missed the opportunity to get these with $0.60). MIL releases its earnings report tomorrow. Why am I bearish? Just look at the chart, I think it's overbought.

NB! If the earnings are OK, this position will end in $0.00, so I repeat that this trade is very speculative and I took only some puts.

Full content in Site Feed!

I disabled content summary option in Blogger and in FeedBurner. What does it mean to you? Now it is possible to get full content with all external links via the site feed. Previously, it was only possible to read content summary.

This change will bring all the interesting content to your favorite feed reader or news aggregator without need to make any extra clicks to access the full body of the posts. I really hope that it gives even more reason to subscribe to Online Trading. If you find this blog useful, it is wise to subscribe, then you won't miss any posts that might be interesting to you.

To syndicate Online Trading feed, please see the following links:

Subscribe to this feed (

Add to MyYahoo!

Add to MyMSN

Subscribe in NewsGator Online Subscribe in NewsGator Online

Subscribe with Bloglines Subscribe with Bloglines

If you want to receive new posts via e-mail, subscribe to Bloglet (you can find the text box below on the right sidebar).

It is also a proper time to refer to an older post where I asked some feedback from you:
Guys, if you see any typos, missing or incorrect text, broken links etc, please let me know (post a comment under the post or send me an e-mail)! Today, there was a typo in the posting about Google options for more than an hour before I noticed it myself, I could have been able to correct it sooner if anyone had written me... :) Of course, you are welcome to contact me with any other suggetions and problems. Let me know, if there are any particular topics you would like to read. I would like to know which areas are the most interesting for you (real time trading opportunities, general reading materials about trading, technical analysis, ...?). And thanks for everyone who is reading my blog, especially some of you, who are checking for new postings several times a day!
If you have troubles with subscribing to the feed or if there is anything else you want me to know, please, feel free to contact!

Google target raised to $345

Today, Google (GOOG) is again in action. CIBC raised Google's target to $345 from $270, Q2 estimates also revised up.

GOOG shares are trading at $300.50 (-0.23%) in pre-market. Keep an eye on $300 support level (Friday's low $299.78). If Google breaks it today on the target raising, it is a negative sign for sure. But still, be aware of false break-outs, Google has had some lately.

Greenspan To Dominate Otherwise Dull Week

The Prudent Investor gives a look at the beginning week:
In the absence of any truly important economic data, capital markets are destined to see another week of rangebound trading. All eyes will therefore be set on the two public appearances of Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan.
On Wednesday Greenspan will deliver his semiannual report on monetary policy to the House of Representatives Financial Services Committee. On Thursday he will report the same to the Senate Banking Committee.
I would add that it's still the earnings season and we may see some sudden turns on the earnings.

Read further:
The Prudent Investor: Greenspan To Dominate Otherwise Dull Week

Using Stop Losses

There is some nice reading on Financial Spread Betting site about setting stop levels as well as other tips for trading. Don't take everything as a complete truth, but it's interesting to read their thoughts anyway.
Most traders set stops at whole numbers. If, for example, there is near-term support for a stock at 55, then one might expect a cluster of sell stops at 54, and again at 53, and so on. Traders gun for these stops in order to scoop up cheap shares. If support is broken, then one might expect the stock to trade down to an even number before support is asserted. For this reason, it makes sense to set your own stop beyond whole-numbered prices. Instead of 54 on a sell-stop, set your stop at 53 7/8 or 53 3/4.

When I was a beginning trader, I met another trader who had run a few thousand dollars into one-half million dollars. He had managed this phenomenal feat by pyamiding a bull move in airline stocks. When I asked him how he did it, he replied, "Each day when I came into the office, I checked my buying power. If I had any, I bought more bonds."

I was at once amazed and alarmed. What a risky way to trade! He put all of his eggs in one basket, and then continued to buy more at higher and higher prices. This man had clearly done everything wrong! He owned only one issue, so he had none of the benefits of diversification. And chasing after the stock as it rose struck me as extremely imprudent, since the average cost of his position continued to rise as well. That made him increasingly vulnerable, since even a modest correction to a point below his average cost would have wiped him out.

And yet, the proof was in the pudding. He had made a lot of money from a little--either through dumb luck, or crazed bullishness, or some craftiness beyond my ken. It took me years to figure out which it was.
Read further:
Financial Spread Betting: Using Stop Losses

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Update: Launches Special Situations Trader

Some of my blog readers have mailed me and asked help with Briefing Special Situations Trader registration.

The Live In Play item which introduced the new feature and contained a link to registration, disappeared shortly after it got published. Probably due to the high interest.

If I remember correctly, they allow only a very limited number (200?) of clients to get access to this beta testing of Briefing Trader and they will choose these "happy ones" on Monday from all applicants.

I will give you the direct link to the registration (you can't find the link in Briefing's anymore):
Briefing Special Situations Trader - Register for Beta

Unfortunately, I believe that you can't even log in, because they have got the number of applicants they needed. Hopefully, the product will be public soon and it would be possible everyone to subscribe to Briefing Trader (but yes, with $250 fee per month).

See also: Launches Special Situations Trader