No Santa For Stocks - Season's Beatings

I hope everyone had a good weekend and was able to knock off some holiday shopping. I don't know about you, but I couldn't help but notice the extremely low traffic at my malls, given it being just a few days before Christmas. Sure, there were a lot of people there, but nothing like years past. I guess it is just another sign of people not spending. There is a lot more of that to come in 2009.

My last post generated a lot of interest in Lending Club, a social networking lending club. There were a lot of questions, so I got the following brief summary from their company saying more about them and their strengths. They seem to have their act together pretty well. Here's what they said, "Because of the current financial crisis credit worthy borrowers are not able to get the financing they need to be entrepreneurs, expand current businesses and payoff debt. Lending Club connects these high quality borrowers with lenders. Lending Club offers SEC registered notes to these investors with returns stated from 6.69-19.37%.

Lending Club notes are 3-year fixed term, but can be resold on our secondary trading platform. This brings liquidity to social lending. Lending Club is currently the only peer lending site right now accepting new lenders and borrowers." So there you have it, if you're interested in testing those returns, go to Lending Club for more information.

Today, resulted in an interesting low volume day. No doubt, the holiday vacationers led to the low volume in today's trading. However, the sellers were definitely still by their computers, wherever they were. The market started out with a doozy of very disappointing earnings from both Walgreens, the largest US drug chain, and Toyota. If autos needed even more pessimism. Even the best made, most attractive and definitely most dominate auto company is having severe sales problems. I don't see a very bright future for our US autos no matter what kind of loan they get. Not for at least 2 years.

Another element, which made people a little ornery today, was the study that came out showing where banks have used the issued "tarp money." The results found that many of the banks were still paying out very large salaries to their executives as they did not have an outlined executive payout like the autos do. And as you can tell, not a lot of new "tarp" lending has hit the consumer market. So these funds are getting soaked up one way or another.

Something very interesting caught my eye today during today's trading. Notice below, the huge upswing just before close. Something came into the market during last 10 minutes to help give it a big boost (my guess starts with an F and rhymes with Red). With the low volume of trading and the large amount of bad earnings, I can't see a natural upswing like the one we saw today happening on its own. Can you say manipulation?

All the shorts finished strong, especially FXP and EEV. As we have discussed in other posts, foreign turmoil is building up and the more unstable the US becomes the more it reflects on these emerging markets. I am feeling good about being in them. SRS was up strong and came down towards the end with the market moving. One big reason for the fall as well, is that commercial developers are requesting to be a part of the bailout list, asking for more than 200 billion dollars. That's awesome, we're not even to Obama yet, and they are already asking. Of course, no companies were singled out personally, as their stock would most likely tank, but you can probably guess (Simon, Kimco, GGP, Centro), but their stock did receive some love today, as it seems some people believe they may get help. I cannot see them getting bailed out at all and them even asking shows just how much pain there expecting. You open Pandora's box if you give developers taxpayer's dollars. I am loving SRS next year.

Expect the volume to continue low this week with it being Christmas week. I still think selling will remain most the week as sentiment is getting worse everyday. The market has seemed very bearish the past two trading days, and once the volume comes back, it could get ugly. There should be some great profits made here in the near future. I hope everyone has a good evening, Happy Trading and see you tomorrow.


  1. Unknown Says:


    I hold FAZ and I worry about the year-end effect which boost the market in Jan.
    Do you think it is a good idea to hold short ETF from now on?
    Thanks for your help.

  2. Anonymous Says:


    I think, if you are in a positive position on a short ETF, then sell very soon. And then re-position after the inauguration. I probably can’t do it in SRS since I am in at $84 and am out of funds to average down. In at $49 on FXP, too. However, I am selling my DXD this week (I think), and will use those profits to average down in SRS and FXP in January (another maybe). And maybe get into some other short ETFs. EEV, maybe.

    Lots of “maybes” here… just too volatile to plan right now. But a down-turn is imminent, IMHO. REITs have to crash. But, then, there are the Government bailouts - destroying leveraged short ETFs in the affected sectors. Temporarily, anyway.

    As far as holding a currently losing position in a short ETF (like me), why not? Reality and panic will set in 1Q, or for sure 2Q, that is my belief.

    I really want the economy to blossom with Obama’s plans - I want to be long in a bull market. Yeah! I just think 09 will be soooo bad…

    PPT and the market manipulators can only go on for so long before they have to let the public stabilize the market (so they can do it again, of course). But, that is where us regular folks can make OUR money if we follow the manipulators.

    BTW, I have absolutely no idea what I’m talking about. Just hypothesizing.


  3. Anonymous Says:

    I've been a lender on Lending Club and Prosper for almost a year not, and I'm telling you, Lending Club's holding is paying off much better than any combination of stocks I've held in the same time frame, even after a few loan defaults.

    My average return is around 10% after fees and defaults. The trick is diversification: invest the smallest amount possible ($25) in as many loans as possible... the good news is you get to pick those loans.

    Good find.

  4. Anonymous Says:

    I would also like to present the counter-argument that in any pyramid scheme, those who first enter do indeed make money. Just wanted to present both sides.

  5. Anonymous Says:

    Bailing out the developers sounds ridiculous, but the Fed did say they would do anything they could to turn things around. That's the part that worries me. That and the fact that they are among the first to request bailout before it gets to be a long line.

  6. Finance Fanatic Says:

    I agree, I don't have any problem with going long with SRS, FXP or EEV. The down spin is coming sooner or later, and sure, we may get some sentimental rally when obama is inaugurated, but there's no saving us from the next 12 months. Commercial real estate is in trouble, and I doubt they are eligible for tarp funds. Some will just have to bleed it out. Great comments guys

  7. Anonymous Says:

    Hi FF,

    Thanks for all the fabulous reports. I am looking for an entry point for GDX. I checked the chart and it seems it is somehow following the whole market trend. Am I right? If the market is going to bottom again, would it likely bring down GDX as well? Or you think GDX is a separate animal?

    Thanks and keep up the good work.

  8. Finance Fanatic Says:

    Although all commodities seem to be moving with the market, I believe there will be some more separation in 2009, especially with Oil and Gold. The market has oversold both of these, and they should correct soon in my mind

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  16. Says:

    That's surprisingly low. Glad they overcame it!

  17. Says:

    The market has oversold both of these, and they should correct soon in my mind.

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  22. Anonymous Says:

    The DJIA’s average gain during this period is also noteworthy. Taking into account all years since 1896, including those few in which there was no Santa Claus rally, the Dow has risen an average of 1.49% after Christmas through the second trading day of January. That compares to an average gain of 0.16% across all other six-day periods in the calendar.

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