Casinos, Spidey-Sense, and Markets: Can a Rally Hold?

4:30 AM and Ure is “back in the chair” for another round of play.  Money for Nothing” cranked.  Coffee hot and strong, sunrise a couple of hours ahead.

There are differences between my office and other Casinos, of course.  For one, time is of the essence here.  Clocks all over:  German, British, and American market times – good luck finding a clock in Vegas.

But the big commonality between “playing stocks” or doing a “slot walk” – waiting for a machine to reach out and “talk to you…” – is the sense of anticipation.  A certain sense or knowingness that – when listened to – rewards you in unbounding measure.  Or, if forced, will kill your finances as sure as a hangman (or bad divorce).

The Spidey-Sense of markets is something else, again.  General attitude (thanks Dude, gratitude, along with love in the heart and happy expectation of joy to come) is only a set-up.

Spidey-Sense is a result of trading over time.  I won’t go into all of my key indicators, but two that really saved my bacon overnight – from a potentially disastrous overnight levered short position – was that the On-Balance Volume didn’t behave “quite right” in the final 15-minutes of trading.

Not only that, but the Moving Average Convergence-Divergence indicator had also looked, well, just off relative to other things.

The “spidey sense” is not free.  It comes from losing money – lots of it.

Going into the close Tuesday – and considering a highly levered short position, I found myself asking “Are you too attached to the IDEA of going short?  Is this driving a “clean” judgement call on Ure part?”

I must have thought about it for a good 10-minutes.  When I was done with the personal “going deep” to sort it out, it was 3:03 PM local time.  The dang market closed while I was thinking. about things.

The “Machines weren’t talking to me.”

A couple of times a week, I will find a “right moment” when asymmetry works in my favor.  Just like at the craps table there are times when the odds are with the shooter.

Asymmetry assures success in stocks if you follow only three simple rules:

  1. Markets go up and down with some regularity over a day or two.  Only enter a trade when the market is likely to head in Ure direction.
  2. If the market goes as you expect, let the trade run.
  3. However, if the trade loses its luster, blow out when you are down $50-bucks.

Human inclination is to think they are “smarter than markets.”  No, you are not.

In Casinos of the comped dinners and rooms type, people act much the same way:  They tend to treat wins and losses symmetrically.  \This is not how to make Big Money, important money.\

The market will go up today but there will be periods when it goes down.  The difference between people is everyone’s judgement of the time of direxctional change will be different.  Precision of inflection point timing is where money is made or lost.

Where stock markets are much more honest than Casinos?  We not only choose when to “spin the wheel” but we also tell it when to stop.

Over 73-years of personal experimentation, I’ve made a shit-load more money in trading than I have in all the Casinos I’ve played.

There’s this dandy quote on the F.B.I.’s official History page (here).  The story was about a Depression Era bank robber of high notoriety.  When asked why he robbed banks, (Willie) Sutton simply replied, “Because that’s where the money is.”

Banks failed all over America in the last Depression.  The problem ahead is what will fail this time?  Might not be the Banks.  Might be the wires between ’em.  Or the Country.

Retail Sales

This financial asymmetry stuff gets us asking a terrible question:  How did the Key Players on Wall Street know that the Retail Sales report today would be OK?  Did advance information leak out?

While I suspect it did, there are a lot of asymmetries in “public thinking” as well.  Who’s going to bitch if the market goes UP 500 points?  But, a similar downside?  Well, that might hurt the long-term market participants on  which Wall Street depends to fund their “action.”

Who knew, if anyone?  Let’s look at those Retail Numbers:

Retail - misleading dollarizedc gains

As we have told you over the years, it takes some engineering-precision of mind when reading reports like this.  Because what is reported is dollars.  Not Units.  With that, here’s the Happy Talk Choir to lead in the singing of Go Joe:

“Advance Estimates of U.S. Retail and Food Services
Advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for April 2022, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $677.7 billion, an increase of 0.9
percent (±0.5 percent) from the previous month, and 8.2 percent (±0.7 percent) above April 2021. Total sales for the February 2022 through April 2022 period were up 10.8 percent (±0.7 percent) from the same
period a year ago. The February 2022 to March 2022 percent change was revised from up 0.7 percent (±0.5 percent) to up 1.4 percent (±0.3 percent)”

Gosh – sales up 8.2 percent.  Know what the corresponding increase in the Fed Monetary Base was?   Up 5.06 percent. (March on March).  So, it looks to us like “real goods” are up around 3.2 percent or so on a rationally calculated basis.

For Units, you need a different kind of source.  Association of American Railroads latest year-to-date traffic figures:

” Total combined U.S. traffic for the first 18 weeks of 2022 was 8,864,939 carloads and intermodal units, a decrease of 3.4 percent compared to last year.”  (As of May 11, 2022)

Taken with Ports data (we’re waiting for reports for the month) this is a more realistic view.  As long as it’s “Money for Nothin” the fix is in.

Can’t live on a diet of paper and digi’s can you?

Wave Counts?

Our Aggregate Index view shows the markets have moved (on early futures today) a good bit higher.  But the real question is whether these levels will hold on through Friday, remember this is options week.

wave count

Wal-Mart had an earnings miss this morning, too (see Walmart Earnings: What Happened with WMT) so that may limit the upside in here.  On the other hand, option players who went short this cycle from last month could have a big payday this week if markets don’t rally.

Longer term?

Good news is the tendency for Holiday Rallies to appear.

Bad news is Russia is moving NSNWs up to the front lines adjoining Finland: Russia sends nuclear-capable Iskander missiles to Finland’s border: Report.

Flash goggles and rosary beads, anyone?  I’ll be looking for a downside reversal, but who knows when, eh?

Short Snorts

Pabulum for the mass distraction servings: Pentagon officials to testify on UFOs.  If there’s not spectral RF data, it’s a joke.  That’s where the answers are.

Elon nails Slow Joe’s act: Elon Musk slams Biden: ‘The real president is whoever controls the teleprompter’.  Well, teleprompter and millions of fake consensus social bots.

Speaking of which – I’ve told you for years about how social bots make-up fake narratives for the lefties?  Lookie here Musk: Doubt about spam accounts could scuttle Twitter deal | AP News.  Musk knows.  I say charge postings 10-cents each after 50 a week.  Or LABEL as suspect machine retweets and the like.

aaa gas prices

Gas Prices continue suckage and wreckage of the wallet:

The price of Diesel is also nightmarish.  It has gone from $3.171 a year ago to the price Monday on Triple A’s Fuel Gauge Report (here, save link) of  $5.573 per gallon.

Bear in mind this has nothing to do with Ukraine.  It has to do with Buyed ‘Em administration’s first-order thinking with the ill-advised sanctions (bank sticking) of Russia.

Biden (unlike Trump) is following a well-established pattern of lighting off new wars, rather than working sincerely on peace negotiations.  No big Defense Contracts in Peace, though.  And with lockdowns over, where are we going to make up jobs is the problem.  Nuke fallout could bring more controls than even Covid if you want an over-reach disaster.

Around the Ranch: Jerky

My buddy Justin, the UPS dude came by last week with a delivery – and he brought me the latest edit of his Texas Beef Jerky recipe.

Un-freaking believable flavor.  Then, half a minute into the chew, a second alarm goes into the Fire Department.  Another minute, or so, and the third alarm is pulled.  20- seconds later it’s a General Alarm fire with a side of Dresden.

“What the hell are the spices in there? Dang stuff is hot!” I explained.

Ran into this special chilis blend down at Hobby Lobby of all places.  On the ingredients is a little big of Ghost Pepper is listed…”

Being no fool, I know how many Scoville’s those run (1,041,427 is commonly cited.)

But I don’t believe him.  I think he’s got a source for still-hot uranium fuel rods.  This isn’t “kitchen burn” hot, or “dumpster fire” hot.  This is Chernobyl-level hot.  Magma flow.

None of which would be bothersome, except I can’t find Rolling Rock down here to save my soul.  And that’s why Biden and CARB wrecking the supply chain personally offends me.

Elaine simply smiled, and said “Pass me the crackers?”

I’ll have to see if Hobby Lobby has any left.  Figured I’ll just  pop my head in, next trip to town.  See if there’s smoke coming from one of the aisles…

Write when you get rich,

Workstations for All!

The companion to the mini ebook “A Life of Gods” on time and task management is unveiled this morning.  This one deals with workstations and workflows.  My thinking is that once something shows up as a task, we need the “power tools” to dispatch it to the “done list.”

A good bit of theory is involved in this.  Work is almost ghostlike in that it seems to be everywhere (and nowhere for the lazy).  Worth spending some coffee and brain cells on.

Because other than some pretty damn interesting market charts, the actual – non-distraction – news flow is hardly overwhelming.

Well, except the Take Taiwan window is opening now, notes my consigliere.

So, brace for that over the next week, or three, to reappear in the sold-out Mainstream Media to add to your mental disorientation.

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