Friday, January 29, 2010

Natural Law

Well, push has come to worse, and worse has come to shove. I bought back GOOG at 556 and now it is being exchanged at 529. You can't pick the bottom. That's a law of nature.

But one thing worked out today. Last November, I bought a bunch of ATGP at 14.82. Then, in December, I sold it for 15.85, because oil stocks make me nervous. To my chagrin, it ran up to 20, after that. Then it started selling off a couple of weeks ago and has dropped like a rock.

Today, I bought the bunch back for 14.65. Nice. But don't worry, it closed at 14.47. The sanctity of natural law has been preserved.

Saturday, January 23, 2010


Sometimes, on Google Eve, when our campfire vigil comes to a close, we don't have to worry about dousing the fire. On those occasions, the market does that for us.

Last week, I had already bought an extra hundred shares of GOOG in anticipation of a great earnings report that would bode well for the future, if not beyond. I waited until we had a selloff from the near-term high of $629 and picked up the hundo for $580. It looked good because Karen Finerman, of Fast Money, was buying at $600.

Then, on Thursday, a lot of things hit at once and the market (which was down already) got ugly. Midday, GOOG was struggling to hold $578, so I put in an order to sell my hundo at $582. If it got there, fine. If not, I'd hunker down.

GOOG spiked to $586 and my order executed. In the next hour, earnings were released and the stock got Meislered, which is technical for "whacked". At 4:20 PM, I bought the hundo back at $556.45

Most of the day Friday, GOOG stayed above my purchase price. But at the close, it slumped to $550.01. In the after hours, some stupid news from Larry and Sergey, that could have waited until Monday, came across the wire and traders, still around at that hour, shorted GOOG down to $545.25, on the hope that there's worse to come.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Google Eve

Chances are better than expected that Google will report quarterly earnings tomorrow after the bell. So, Google Eve is upon us, once again.

The bean counters have, to a man, turned giddy about Google's performance last quarter. But the market has turned churlish toward festiveness of any kind, so we must expect a period of downward pressure to satisfy the Schadenfreudians among us.

But we need not be concerned about that. It is customary, on Google Eve, to gather around the campfire, under the Google Sky, sharing Google stories with believers and skeptics alike. Karen Finerman will be on hand, this time, to testify about her conversion from skeptic to Google shareowner at $600. Google, she will declare, is now a value stock. It's really different, this time. Be there.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Troglodyte Implications

I just printed a conversation in GMail and it worked very well. Just what I wanted and nothing more. But, as the pages were printing, I started thinking, what's the point of printing anything? In the very near future, all communications will connect to everybody, on-line. Printing will be instant garbage. Why would anybody do it? So that somebody could read it? Why would they do that? Are they not connected? Who are these people? Meanwhile, I needed to print the damn thing, and so I did, despite the troglodyte implications.

Monday, January 11, 2010

The Undisciplined Trader

That's me. In the recent unpleasantness of last year, I called every shot right until the last one. In the maw of the panic, I was selling when I should have been buying. I've been out-of-sync with the market ever since.

That's why I'm still overwhelmingly in cash, lent out for no interest at all. It's why I still own only two stocks (GOOG and NLY), though they have both been big winners from the lows of last March.

A couple of weeks ago, I sold a thousand NLY. I did that before and was able to buy it back cheaper. This time, the stock refuses to sell off in response to my sale.

A month ago, I also bought a thousand ATPG around 14.82. I watched it go almost to 17 and then got nervous when it started dropping. Oil stocks make me nervous. I got out at 15.85. The stock then went to 20.

I could still get right with these stocks. This is where patience comes in. All I need is a good pullback in the market.

On the other hand, last week, I looked at Google at 625 and thought about selling a hundred, but I knew I wasn't going to do that within a couple of weeks of what is expected to be the biggest earnings party that Google has thrown in several years. If I had sold the hundo, I could've bought it back any time today for 595. But I don't care. I want to go to the party.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Barron's Google Page Rank Index

My subscription to Barron's weekly ran out a few weeks ago, but the fool keeps delivering it to me. That means I can report on the Barron's Google Page Rank Index.

Every week, Barron's includes on one page an index of companies that are cited in that issue of the magazine. Along with each company cited, the page numbers of the citations are shown. In other words, an index. Or you could think of it as an old media, pitiful version of Google's page rank mechanism by which everything in the world is rated.

I check this index every week to see how many times Google has been cited. I think of it as an estimate of Barron's opinion of Google at any given time. Barron's usually has a low opinion of Google. This is evidenced by the large amount of Barron's space given to Fred Hickey, when Fred Hickey, in the opinion of most responsible analysts, is a fool. Right up there with Peter Schiff. Fred Hickey is on record as saying that fair value for Google is $25. Fair value for Google has never been $25.

Most weeks, Google will be cited two or three times less than Apple. Sometimes, it is not cited at all. Often, when Google does get cited, it's somebody badmouthing the company. Like Fred Hickey.

Lately, the situation has been improving. Today, Google is mentioned five times, two more than any other company in the list, including Apple. And the mentions are good. On page L14, Eddie Brown, who used to appear on Rukeyser's show, says that Google "is doing everything right."

This is part of a groundswell of improvement in traders' opinions of Google's chances from the current level of $600. Karen Finerman, on FastMoney, is downright evangelistic, telling everybody to just buy it. Pete Janarian agrees, with the stipulation that options be purchased. Finerman says, "Just buy it." She didn't used to be that way. Cramer pegs it for $750.

We've been here before. But, this time, it will stick. Barron's Google Page Rank Index confirms it.