They're all right. It's a casino. A trader's stock. Don't try to trade it. And Kass expressed what amounts to a long-term bear case. I agree with several components of his pessimism.
However, as I explained Monday on TheStreet, this harsh, volatile and sustained sell-off absolutely has something to do with capital gains-related profit taking. That's where Kass and I part ways.
It's not only about taxes, but that's what started this; everything else that came after only intensified the selling. If you're sitting on AAPL profits -- retail, institutional, small position, large position, whatever -- you had to think about taking them, no matter what stage of life you're at.
If you initially decided against it, these last few sell-offs probably helped shake out the strongest of hands. Only the most emotional, stubborn, brave and, dare I say, crazy AAPL bulls have not sold one share.Sure, buy some more on the dips if you're truly a believer. Just don't do it with "your" money. So, you had a $50,000 stake in AAPL turn into $100,000. Here's hoping you took one of the stock's recent rallies to pull out half or, preferably, 3/4 of your capital. Now, you can bank some of those profits, put them to work elsewhere and reassess AAPL and buy shares in the low half of the $500s. Just don't get all bull-headed. I love Apple, but that doesn't mean I love AAPL. And I know that if sanity and rationality governed the world, none of this would be happening right now. In a perfect world, AAPL meanders, slightly outpacing the market, before Apple blows out the holiday quarter and the stock follows with a rally that rips the few shorts in the stock's heads off. Apple and Amazon.com (AMZN) share some characteristics: bulls love to talk trash, but few people have the guts to go short for more than a quick trade. That shows there is at least some sanity and rationality left on Earth. And if you spread out your risk vis-a-vis your AAPL profits, you're also thinking with a sane and rational mind. Put a little in the bank. Invest a little somewhere else. Buy yourself or your lover something nice. And then, maybe, dabble in a few more AAPL shares after the fiscal cliff dust settles and the company gets set to report holiday earnings in late January. Follow @rocco_thestreet --Written by Rocco Pendola in Santa Monica, Calif.
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