A Look at Cramer's Windshield

Plus, charts for CustomTracks, Scientific-Atlanta and Peapod.
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Ah, another pleasant Friday here in steamy D.C. I'm writing this Tuesday, but you're reading it Friday. So that can mean only one thing: That tedious

Fed

meeting is behind us, but I'm analyzing these charts without the benefit of that knowledge.

Well, so be it. Like all things getting mega-focus, it'll probably turn out to be a big, fat zippo of an event. As it should be, by the way.

That said, let me start off by taking a look at

Cramer's

windshield. (Which by the way, does have a certain ring to it. I mean, shoot, there's Occam's razor, Arnie's army and Earl's sandwich. Heck, the man deserves to be immortalized with

something

.)

Anyway, the

windshield Cramer refers to is the 30-year bond, and obviously it's the source of much hand-wringing and consternation. I looked at it a few weeks ago, but since it seems to be the focus du jour, I thought I'd have another take.

Now, building on some of my recent columns, one's take on interest rates all depends on perspective. Short term, I suppose you'd have to be a bit bearish.

However, as grim as it's been for bondholders lately, I really think the long-term bears are watching because Cramer's windshield might start to show a few cracks in it. Or, in less oblique terms, we might see rates start to drop again. Certainly a longer-term chart supports this view.

Of interest, by the way, is that I'm finding very few shorts lately. And what shorts I do have working aren't exactly moving like I'd want them to -- which means down.

Fortunately, I'm buffered by plenty of long positions, making my overall portfolio swing heavily to the bull side. All this, of course, seems to coincide with a rosier interest-rate picture.

Bottom line: I'd like to be bearish, because, well, I just seem to perform better from that side. But everything I see says that would be the wrong way to go. So, I'm a bull as long as it's appropriate. Or until I get splattered on Cramer's windshield.

The CUST Fuss

Item Next: What is up with

CustomTracks

(CUST)

? Normally, I get multiple chart requests for stuff like

America Online

(AOL)

,

eBay

(EBAY) - Get Report

or any of the other "must-have" stocks. But CUST? Yes, CUST, as

Michele Holcomb

,

Jo Anne Foulk

,

Marc Vraciu

and even

Brian No-Name

requested.

And then even

Herb G.

piped in, all of which necessitated a special Friday look at CustomTracks. But after eyeballing the chart, I kind of wish I hadn't been asked. Reason? Murky, at best. Given that, I wasn't surprised the questions from the aforementioned readers ranged from "Should I short it?" to "Should I buy it?" And whenever I see such mixed opinions, it usually means one thing: Stay away!

Yes, this is a classic -- albeit, rare -- case where a fundamentalist might have an edge. To my eye, there are enough crosscurrents working here that I'd spend about two seconds on this chart, conclude there are about 5,000 easier stocks to trade and then move on. But maybe you fundamentalists have an inside edge on CUST I don't know about. If so, there's certainly no consensus reflected in the chart.

Reader Requests

In this week's mailbag, I stumbled on a request for one of the first charts I ever traded,

Scientific-Atlanta

(SFA)

.

Hemang Parekh

wanted my thoughts, and I'll give him that, plus point out an unusual chart pattern.

Finally, reader

Paul Eidpo

wanted my thoughts on Internet service companies, one of which is Net grocer

Peapod

(PPOD)

.

And that, folks, concludes my prepared remarks. And remember, if you see "Cramer's windshield" start to catch on, well, you know where you heard it first.

Gary B. Smith is a freelance writer who trades for his own account from his Maryland home using technical analysis. At the time of publication, he held no positions in any securities mentioned in this column, although holdings can change at any time. Under no circumstances does the information in this column represent a recommendation to buy or sell stocks. Smith writes five technical analysis columns for TheStreet.com each week, including Technician's Take, Charted Territory and TSC Technical Forum. While he cannot provide investment advice or recommendations, he welcomes your feedback at

gbsmith@ibm.net.