After 5+ years of an amazing bull market, with stocks soaring to record highs, this weeks action, from a technical perspective, could be marking the top. As 2014 progressed we've seen many bears, after miraculously navigating the biggest bull market of our lifetime, throwing in the towel. That in itself should raise the eye brows of market participants.
Today officially marks the end of Baidu (BIDU) as the once loved wall-street darling that rose 1000%+ from the 2008 collapse... at least in my book. It used to be a stock every hedge fund owned and every analyst had buy ratings with lofty price targets. Today Credit Suisse downgraded the stock and reduced it's price target from $118 to $83, which is the lowest price target on the stock right now. I think that will change as analysts will continue the trend of downgrading the stock on competition and market share concerns.
Folks bearish on the stock have been raising their bets on future downside, as 8,494,038 shares are currently short and is an increase of over 1 million shares from the month before. I expect that to increase 3-4 fold in the coming weeks.
We are betting on a quick move under $100 for Baidu(BIDU) this week, as the selling pressure increases and shorters continue to increase their bets. We currently hold the 100/95 weekly puts and the October 20th puts. Baidu(BIDU) can be a very volatile stock, so be prepared for some wild swings here but to me it looks like the 3 week battle of bull vs bear has been decided with a decisive victory coming from the Bears here shortly.
Baidu is trading at $106.32 as we write this.
I may seem stupid now, and we may have a few more down days, but...
Most daytraders close out their positions before the close. Making a living trading stocks is all about controlling your risks, and obviously there is more risk when you hold an equity overnight. Who knows what type of news can come out before the market opens that may impact your holdings. Better to lock-in the gain or loss before the close, and wait for the next trading day. That is, unless you are an option trader. Why? Well some of the most Epic moves come from holding a position over a few days.
Lets use todays move on LinkedIn(LNKD) as an example.
Stocks like LinkedIn (LNKD) are susceptible to volatile moves which is caused by the varying opinions of the 'proper' valuation of the stock. There are those who think a stock with a P/E ratio of 800 is a bubble and then the ones with the foresight(like myself) who are more forward looking, and think LinkedIn (LNKD) is undervalued. Bulls and bears squared off today. With Greece grabbing the headlines again (puke) causing a market sell off, LinkedIn(LNKD) fell over 8% to $101.53.
Its at that moment when option traders start to salivate. Not more then 3 trading days ago, LinkedIn (LNKD) traded over $120, now it sat almost 20% off its highs. CALLS! Buying the calls today at that moment would have resulted in some huge returns. But it those who hold for another day or two that may reap the big rewards. Take a look at the possible return today on the LinkedIn (LNKD) $11o calls. $550 into $4,400 possible.
But if you have read our blog, your know we are extremely bullish on LinkedIn(LNKD). Todays action maybe a prelude to the stock trading firmly above $120, which would result in those calls being up substantially more. Time will tell.
Where is the market headed tomorrow? We have used the VIX the last few months as a forward looking indicator, along with some other signals. The VIX pushed through the upper bollie, only to fall back through it. We think this is a key reversal signal. Take a look at the chart below:
The great thing about options is, you only need to be right a few times out of 10 to make some serious cash. Check back after tomorrow and let us know how we did.
When I was a kid, my grandmother always told me don't talk to strangers. Fast forward 20 years, and I still hear her voice as I read countless opinions on LinkedIn (LNKD) and why it will go down from here. Not that I will ever talk to some of those people, and I am sure as heck not going to listen to them. The bearish sentiment by the retail investor gives more credence to my argument that LinkedIn (LNKD) will see $150+ by the end of the summer.
It's only when a growth stock is in the midst of an epic run, that the retail trader starts getting on the bandwagon. And of course they are the ones holding the bag on the way down. It's how this market works, and will never change. Just like the economy, the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.
LinkedIn(LNKD) is currently trading at 101.43 up 3.38% on light volume. Expect the knife to come out on the BEARS, as they are put back into their cave until the fall.