Interdum stultus opportuna loquitur...

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

USRant: Jail This Sick Prick...

Note - from June 24th 2009, this blog has migrated from Blogger to a self-hosted version. Click here to go straight there.

Why isn't Head Nutjob of the American Religious Right  Pat Robertson being visited by men delivering him an orange jumpsuit? This fruitcake declared a day or so ago, that democratically elected (three times) Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez should be assassinated... by the US.

So let's get this straight.... it would be OK for a religious leader in, say, Indonesia, to call for the assassination of, say, John Howard? Or is it only kosher when the 'religious leader' is a fat white guy who makes load of political contributions to the Republicans?

We have this - let's be frank - Taliban style religious maniac, calling for the US to violate international law and its own statutes that prohibit assassination; if it was a Muslim cleric calling for Iran to do likewise, Bush would have called a press conference and repeated whatever was spoken into his earpiece. Most of it would have been about how the US would not tolerate 'hate speech', and sabre rattling.

Yesterday we had the disgusting (and racist) 'conference' wherein John Howard trotted out some pet Muslims, and talked of gutting the religion - even to the extent that some of the 'plantation negro' religious 'leaders' advocated State regulation of who could be an 'imam'. Now I want that slimy little half-monkey to denounce Robertson.

As if. It'll never happen. If John Howard ever actually possessed testicles (Pru might know), they are now firmly ensconced in a jar in George Bush's fridge. I'm sure Bush will let Howard have them back once either one of them leaves office. They both should be dragged from office and hauled before the International Court of Justice in the Hague - they are responsible for far more deaths than Slobodan Milosevic, and at least Milosevic was fighting over land that was connected to the land he was born in.

Someone ought to help Pat Robertson get closer to the Flying Spaghetti Monster, frankly; if he's so keen on God and killin', let someone - anyone - connect the dots and send that batshit insane mother-pus-bucket straight to hell.

Federal Reserve Open Market Operations

The Fed's Open Market Operations desk performed 1 repurchase operation - a $6.75billion, overnight repurchase entirely in T-backed collateral undertaken at a 0.1 basis point premium to the Fed Funds Rate (FFR).

No discount, no moonshot. Simple as that.

Major US Indices

It could have been worse...

The Dow opened with the feeblest of attempts to rally - but stalled after 4 minutes (and 6 Dow points) of upward movement, topping out (for the day) at 10577.46 literally 4 minutes after the open. From there it was a zigzag for the rest of the day.

Citigroup was especially weak - recall that I've been talking about the highest-probability for a genuine bounce in C as being in the mid-to-low $42-ish area. It got a bit closer to that level last night - dipping to an intraday low of $43.38; given that it's the most heavily manipulated stock in the market, it remains the best of the bellwethers - if it ain't participatin' in an advance, there's something amiss. Recently it has been keen to join any decline, but absent during the up-days.

After its feeble opening pop, the Dow reversed for three hours - eventually bouncing after touching 10500 (it breached that level for 4 whole minutes). From there is was one-way action all the way back up to 10553 (10550-ish) before dipping into the close. 

For the session, the index declined 50.31 points (0.48%), closing at 10519.58 points. The index hit an intraday high of 10577.46 at the open, and teased breakout traders by trading just below 1050 0(at 10496.73) at the low. 

Within the blue-chip index, 7 stocks rose, the biggest gainers being SBC Communications (SBC, +0.71% to $24.20) and Hewlett Packard (HPQ, +0.68% to $26.71), which accounted for 3 Dow points between them. Losers in the Dow numbered 22 and were led by Alcoa (AA, -2.40% to $27.68) and Citigroup (C, -1.45% to $43.56), with these two stocks contributing -11 Dow points worth of downward pressure on the index. Volume traded was tilted in favour of the losers by 238.6m shares to 51.5m.

The broader S&P500 dipped 4.14 points (0.34%), ending the day at 1217.59. Within the index, gainers numbered 165, while 317 S&P500 stocks fell for the day. Volume was tilted 1.6:1 in favour of the losers with 882.52 million units traded in the losers as compared with 536.33 million traded in the winners .

Over at Times Square, the Nasdaq Composite declined 4.16 points (0.19%), to close at 2137.25, while larger-cap technology issues fared worse with the Nasdaq100 losing 4.29 points (0.27%), to end at 1571.3 points. Within the tech benchmark, gainers numbered 31, while 63 Nasdaq100 stocks fell for the day. Volume was tilted 2.3:1 in favour of the losers with 357.95 million traded in the losers compared to 154.77 million in the winners .

NYSE Volume was chunky, with 1.68 billion shares changing hands, while Nasdaq Volume was pretty weak, with 1.34 billion shares traded.

Major Market Statistics
Dow Jones Industrial Average10519.58-50.31-0.48%
Nasdaq Composite2137.25-4.16-0.19%
NYSE Volume1.68bn--
Nasdaq Volume1.34bn--


My 9-stock "bellwethers" group fell by an average of 0.48%

  • General Electric (GE) -$0.00 (0%) to $33.97;
  • Citigroup (C) -$0.64 (1.45%) to $43.56;
  • Wal Mart (WMT) -$0.33 (0.71%) to $46.34;
  • I.B.M. (IBM) -$0.57 (0.69%) to $82.03;
  • Intel (INTC) -$0.34 (1.3%) to $25.72;
  • Cisco Systems (CSCO) +$0.07 (0.4%) to $17.76;
  • eBay (EBAY) -$0.17 (0.43%) to $38.98;
  • Fannie Mae (FNM) -$0.01 (0.02%) to $50.85; and
  • Freddie Mac (FRE) -$0.09 (0.15%) to $61.51.

Market Breadth & Internals

NYSE declining Issues beat out advancers by 1820 to 1447, for a single-day A/D reading of -373; and Nasdaq losers exceeded gainers by 1674 to 1327. The 10-day moving average of the A/D line fell to -55.7 on the NYSE, while the 10dma of the Nasdaq A/D fell to -155.2.

On the NYSE declining volume was greater than volume in advancing issues by 962.6 to 663.5 million shares; On the Nasdaq declining volume exceeded volume in advancing issues by 734.9 to 574.8 million shares.

71 NYSE-listed stocks rose to new 52-week highs, and 30 posted fresh 52-week lows, while on the Nasdaq there were 69 stocks that hit new 52-week highs, and 47 which fell to fresh 52-week lows.

Market Breadth Statistics

Advancing Volume (m)663.46574.81
Declining Volume (m)962.55734.85
New Highs7169
New Lows3047

Market Sentiment Statistics
CBOE Volatility Index13.38-0.09-0.67%
CBOE Nasdaq Volatility Index15.62-0.34-2.13%
Equity Put-Call Ratio0.810.079.46%
10-day PCR0.6300%
SPX-VIX Ratio910.30.33%

Bond Market Analysis

Bonds rose at the long end, with the yield on the benchmark 30-year Treasury bond shedding 2.1 bps to 4.405%.

The middle of the yield curve was broadly higher in price: five year yields fell to 4.049%, and ten-year yields fell to 4.187%.

Spreads between short-dated (2-yr) Treasuries and high-grade corporate bonds of similar maturity profiles were unchanged at -7.0 basis points; spreads between longer dated Treasuries and their corporate AAA counterparts fell to 46.0 bps for 10-year AAA, and 86.0 bps for 20-years.

Credit spreads (spreads between corporate bonds of the same maturity profile but different creditworthiness) were broadly wider with the AAA-A spread on 20-years 2.0 bps wider at 36.0 basis points and the 10-year AAA-A spread 5.0 bps looser at7.0 bps.

Treasury Yields
UST 13wk (yld)3.4400%
UST 2Y (yld)3.96-0.04-1%
UST 5Y (yld)4.049-0.026-0.64%
UST 10Y (yld)4.187-0.032-0.76%
UST 30Y (yld)4.405-0.021-0.47%

The Banks Index dipped 0.85 points (0.85%), to end the session at 99.06; within the index,

  • Citigroup (C) -$0.64 (1.45%) to $43.56;
  • Regions Financial (RF) -$0.40 (1.2%) to $32.88;
  • BB&T Corp (BBT) -$0.48 (1.16%) to $40.83;
  • US Bancorp (USB) -$0.33 (1.1%) to $29.73; and
  • Suntrust Banks (STI) -$0.79 (1.1%) to $71.25.

The Broker-dealer Index added 0.34 points (0.2%), at 170.97; the ticket clippers lined up as follows -

  • E*Trade (ET) +$0.33 (1.99%) to $16.90;
  • Ameritrade (AMTD) +$0.18 (0.89%) to $20.50;
  • Raymond James (RJF) +$0.19 (0.64%) to $29.91;
  • Bear Stearns (BSC) +$0.36 (0.36%) to $100.55; and
  • Morgan Stanley (MWD) +$0.11 (0.21%) to $52.40.

The Philadelphia SOX (Semiconductor) index slid 0.2 points (0.04%), to end the session at 467.52

  • Freescale Semiconductors (FSL-B) -$0.41 (1.72%) to $23.39;
  • Micron Technology (MU) -$0.15 (1.33%) to $11.10;
  • Intel (INTC) -$0.34 (1.3%) to $25.72;
  • ST Microelectronic (STM) -$0.17 (1.01%) to $16.73; and
  • KLA-Tencor (KLAC) -$0.48 (0.97%) to $49.11.

Gold & Silver Markets

Gold rose $1.30 (0.3%) to close at $441.20 per ounce.

The Gold Bugs Index slid 2.86 points (1.37%), closing at 205.28

  • Coeur d'Alene (CDE) -$0.28 (7.22%) to $3.60;
  • Harmony Gold (HMY) -$0.28 (3.32%) to $8.16;
  • Hecla Mining (HL) -$0.13 (3.29%) to $3.82;
  • Golden Star (GSS) -$0.09 (2.92%) to $2.99; and
  • Randgold Resources (GOLD) -$0.36 (2.57%) to $13.66.

Silver fell by $0.09 (1.3%) to close at $6.97 per ounce. The Gold and Silver Index (XAU) lost 0.58 points (0.6%), closing at 95.63 points.

  • Harmony Gold (HMY) -$0.28 (3.32%) to $8.16;
  • Meridian Gold (MDG) -$0.34 (1.77%) to $18.91;
  • Kinross Gold (KGC) -$0.11 (1.68%) to $6.44; and
  • Freeport McMoran (FCX) -$0.64 (1.54%) to $40.80.
Precious Metals and Indices
PHLX Gold and Silver Index95.63-0.58-0.6%
AMEX Gold BUGS Index205.28-2.86-1.37%

Oil Market

Oil had a wild ride - early in the session it spiked to $66.20 before getting absolutely flogged for two hours (during which time the price dropped $1.50 a barrel to the session low of $64.65). By the close, the price had risen just  $0.06 per barrel, closing at $65.71 per barrel. 

The Oil and Gas Index (XOI) lost 4.57 points (0.47%), closing at 962.5

  • Kerr Mcgee (KMG) -$1.05 (1.21%) to $85.67;
  • Marathon Oil (MRO) -$0.63 (1.05%) to $59.62; and
  • BP (BP) -$0.58 (0.86%) to $67.12.

The Oil service stocks (OSX) Index added 0.37 points (0.23%), to end the session at 161.33

  • Rowan Companies (RDC) +$0.54 (1.58%) to $34.62;
  • National Oilwells/Varco (NOV) +$0.68 (1.18%) to $58.40; and
  • Baker Hughes (BHI) +$0.64 (1.15%) to $56.16.
Energy Complex
Reuters CRB312.920.370.12%
Crude Oil Light Sweet65.710.060.09%
Heating Oil1.850600.09%
Natural Gas9.6830.121.24%
Unleaded Gas1.79370.010.46%
AMEX Oil Index962.5-4.57-0.47%
Oil Service Index161.330.370.23%

Currency Markets

USD Exchange Rates
US Dollar Index88.08-0.02-0.02%
Australian Dollar0.75560.00070.09%
Swiss Franc1.27040.00010.01%
Canadian Dollar0.83480.00230.28%