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March 28, 2017 | Bears Once Again Are Their Own Worst Enemy

Rick Ackerman

Rick Ackerman is the editor of Rick’s Picks, an online service geared to traders of stocks, options, index futures and commodities. His detailed trading strategies have appeared since the early 1990s in Black Box Forecasts, a newsletter he founded that originally was geared to professional option traders. Barron’s once labeled him an “intrepid trader” in a headline that alluded to his key role in solving a notorious pill-tampering case. He received a $200,000 reward when a conviction resulted, and the story was retold on TV’s FBI: The Untold Story. His professional background includes 12 years as a market maker in the pits of the Pacific Coast Exchange, three as an investigator with renowned San Francisco private eye Hal Lipset, seven as a reporter and newspaper editor, three as a columnist for the Sunday San Francisco Examiner, and two decades as a contributor to publications ranging from Barron’s to The Antiquarian Bookman to Fleet Street Letter and Utne Reader.

Bears gave it all back yesterday, doing all the heavy lifting for the bad guys with a short-covering binge that began less than an hour after the opening bell. The panic buying-spree recouped nearly all of the 200-point drop in the Dow that had begun the day. When will the “don’t” bettors learn to keep their cool?  Answer: Never, if more than two centuries of market history can tell us anything. Meanwhile, the ferocity of the swoon and the steepness of the recovery are instructive on the point of how much control the sleazebags who manipulate markets for a living have over short-term swings. All they had to do to trigger off the short-covering stampede was to take index futures down low enough overnight to exhaust sellers. They can do this without having to suck up much stock on the way down, ratcheting their bids lower to fill each new wave of market orders that comes in. The foregoing aside, they will be confronted on Tuesday with the same downside targets that obtained Sunday night. (In the case of the E-Mini S&Ps, that means 2309.50, about eight points beneath Monday’s low. It will remain viable as long as 2356.00 is not breached to the upside first.)

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March 28th, 2017

Posted In: Rick's Picks

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