More Opinion by The Springboard

THE UPRISING OF THE AMERICAN PARTY "Clearly the voters are engaged right now, at least for sure on the republican side, and what they have concluded is that the republican party has not done their job. Thus, Donald Trump gets their vote."

Thursday, June 26, 2008

DOW SHEDS 358 MORE POINTS, THE BOTTOM IS NOT HERE YET

In a sense I feel vindicated as the DOW shed yet another 358 points today to close at 11,458 and some change because just a few days ago I said I thought the market had not yet bottomed and would go lower. I'm saddened that the market needs to undergo this massive correction and that the market and economy has had to give up so much, but that's the way of the market. It operates in cycles and this is a down one. Certainly my portfolio is wheezing heftily by now, but it will survive the storm in the long term.

I think we will have a short rally midweek next week to gain back around 150-225 points, probably hold on to most of that to next Friday, but the week following we're going to see more losses. That said, I'm going to make the call right here that next week is still a sit it out and wait period. I wouldn't be buying this market at all for the moment. The market is going lower.

Friday, June 20, 2008

THE DOW GIVES UP 220 MORE POINTS

Okay, so now even I'm feeling a little jittery after the DOW took another plunge today to lose a painful additional 220 points. Bank stocks are still ugly critters caught up in a mortgage and credit mess and oil just doesn't want to stop going up. Gas at my local station today is at $4.09 a gallon for regular unleaded and there's much talk about gas hitting around $4.50 by mid-summer.

A sickening feeling grows in my stomach as I sift through my portfolio and assess the damage. Even for me, after touting loudly about the rebound I think is to come, and making my case for buying into this market because of it, I found myself today second-guessing. Should I be in this market? Should I be buying? Is it going to come back? What in the hell do I do now?

For all intents and purposes it is indeed a tricky question. Of course it is going to come back. It's just a question of when. Right now the markets are caught up in some very uncertain times and speculation is wild. Even the word capitulation came up today, a scary word indeed for the investment markets because it's sort of like saying the markets have given up hope. It says the markets are surrendering to the trend, and that's an ugly prospect. It means the downturn in the market could last longer than originally thought and signals more problems weighing on stocks and the economy as a whole.

Maybe sitting idle for a week or so is in order. It's clearer now that the market has not yet bottomed, and I think sitting idle just a bit to see what the market is going to do is a good idea. Don't get me wrong. If you think like I do that the rebound is coming and you have the time to wait, then stocks are still relatively cheap for the Main Streeter who has the longer term in mind. That said, I don't think anyone is going to really miss out any deals by waiting a bit.

For the moment I'm holding.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

JITTERY WALL STREETERS GIVE ME THE CHEAPS

Walk out onto the floor of the New York Stock Exchange after a day's trading and you'll no doubt find litters of paper piled upon piles. You may likely find heaps of fingernails and fistfuls of hair as well.

It's no surprise that these guys who work on Wall Street are probably the most nervous bunch of people you may ever meet. But this is actually a good thing. At least in my mind.

For a large percentage of people such as you and I, commonly referred to as Main Streeters, jittery nervous Wall Streeters often times play right into our hands. I'm bearing in mind that most Wall Streeters are after the knockout stock play. They're looking for that one-two punch that will lead them to a quick profit-or they are looking for the door hoping to preserve as much capital as possible after the old you-know-what hits the fan. They trade in large volume and the slightest tick up or down can be Heaven or sheer disaster. There can be massive swings in the price of a stock because of this.

This is more true in the current market when few stocks are being valued based on their fundamentals. You know, those things you and I are interested in. Things like, what is the long term strength of the company? What do its future earnings look like? Is it a company that can do well in an up or down market? Moreover, what is the company's intrinsic value?

Looking at stocks and the market in this way reveals that there are a great many, solid companies that are getting hammered for no good reason other than the fact that everyone is getting hammered. Don't get me wrong. Some stocks are being fairly dragged through the muck, and it is more important than ever before to identify who they are and avoid them. But for the one's that aren't, bargains abound for the patient investor. Quite literally, the stock market is on clearance and I think you should be buying the market right now rather than just sitting on the sidelines or selling the entire lot. If it's a good stock, it's a good stock in any market, and downturns simply make it cheaper to create a new position or add shares to an existing one.

What's more, I think you should be betting on the rebound that will come, even if the real benefits may not appear for another 24 months or so. That means I want to keep it in mind to buy the stocks of companies whose products and services people will buy when they have money to blow again. Rebound companies of particular interest to me right now are Target Corporation (TGT), Marcus Corporation (MCS), and Visa Inc. (V). Apple Inc. (AAPL) tends to be a favorite of mine still as well. Even at nearly $200 a share I think this stock is a bargain. Other rebound plays include automobiles, electronics, restaurants, casinos and resorts.

As for oil, you know I'm steering clear of that. Perhaps a short play may be in order in this sector. But even then I'd still wait to make that play until after the price per barrell goes above $160-$170. Who'd be my first pick for a short candidate? Exxon Mobil (XOM), of course. Yeah, the bigger they are the harder they'll fall. Plus, XOM in particular was the one getting all the bad press.

Friday, June 6, 2008

McCAIN VS. OBAMA ONWARD TO NOVEMBER

Back on March 4th I made my prediction that the November presidential election would come down to republican candidate John McCain and democratic candidate Barack Obama, and ultimately that prediction came to be. Not that I've done any amazing soothsaying or that I claim any great insight. I stated in my blog, "The final four will become two," that I thought it was clear who among the final four were the strongest candidates to vie for the post of commander-in-chief and laid out several reasons for my thinking that way. I think it was that day or just shortly thereafter the blog was posted that John McCain was officially announced as the republican candidate. He really was the logical candidate. Mike Huckabee just didn't have the numbers even though he did seem to better fit the republican preference for a conservative candidate. Truth be known, had the choice been mine to make, Huckabee would have ultimately been the nominee. That said, I am supportive of McCain's campaign.

Now is where the fun begins. Now is where we finally will get to see what the two left standing are made of. Now is where real issues among viable candidates can be hashed out, analyzed, and ultimately put into the basket when considering who will best lead our country forward. I'm really looking forward to this. This is going to be the politics fans Super Bowl of Super Bowls.

Next up, the candidates will pick their running mates. Hmm, let's see. Do I dare make a prediction? Seems the dems want Barack to bring Hillary aboard, but its any one's guess if he'll go for that. As for me, on the republican side I'd be in love with a McCain and Huckabee ticket.