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1. A Key Trigger Tomorrow

Jason Schwarz
2/17/2009 4:00 PM EST

Everyone now understands that all eyes are on Washington, and I expect Obama to put on a housing show tomorrow. Remember that housing is one of the three triggers for this market. What am I buying ahead of tomorrow? The two stocks that I just can't get out of my head: Exxon Mobil ( XOM - Get Report) and Bank of America ( BAC - Get Report). Oil is very low, and Exxon might have the most reliable trading range of any stock on Wall Street; the big banks are safe, in fact BAC paid back $400 million of TARP today. Way to go, Ken Lewis.

2. SBUX Going Low End? It Makes No Sense

Scott Rothbort
2/17/2009 1:04 PM EST

Starbucks ( SBUX - Get Report) is coming put with value meals and instant coffee. This is a huge departure from its business model. In effect, it is saying that Dunkin' Donuts and McDonald's ( MCD - Get Report) got it right. I don't see a turnaround with low-margin products and a high-margin business model.

3. Snapback Trade Idea

James Altucher
2/17/2009 9:58 AM EST

Snapback trade of the day: Long Walter Industries ( WLT) at $18-ish.

WLT is down 16% as the company reported net income for the full year 2008 of $346.6 million, or $6.35 per diluted share. This compares with $40 million, or 76 cents per share, in the fourth quarter 2007, and $112 million, or $2.13 per diluted share, for the full year 2007.

Conference call starts at 10 a.m. More to follow.

4. Morning Trade

Bob Byrne
2/17/2009 9:21 AM EST

We are setting up for an ugly opening with the bears licking their chops and gunning for the Jan 20 double bottom. If the bulls cannot keep us above 801.50, the door is wide open for the bears to crack the double bottom at 797.50 and drive the market lower ... targeting 787. If no one shows up to defend the market at 787, we could be in for a fast drop to 780 and 774 before bulls test the waters again.

The bulls need to push the e-mini through 801.50 and hold that level if they are to have any shot at a rebound today. If the bulls are able to push us through 801.50, they will run into strong resistance at 806. A break of 806 should allow the bulls to run as high as 812 and 815.50 ... both moderate resistance levels. If the bulls can push through 815.50, they will find strong selling at 818.75. Any rebound should run of gas near 825.

As I type, I see the market has sliced right through the double bottom. I would expect traders to try a quick fade (buy) on or near the open (to test the bears' resolve).

5. AK Steel Takeover Rumors Cause Bullish Options Activity

Jon "Dr. J" Najarian
2/17/2009 8:13 AM EST

Bullish options activity has spiked for AK Steel ( AKS - Get Report) on rumors that it might be taken over by U.S. Steel ( X - Get Report).

AKS calls were 153% of normal volume, as 12,000 had traded against just 2,400 puts by the last hour of Friday's session, according to OptionMonster's tracking systems. At the same time, U.S. Steel saw 14,000 puts trade at its March 20 strike.

AK Steel has been the subject of other takeover talk in recent months, including rumors in December that mentioned Japan's Sumitomo Metals as a possible suitor. But given that arbitrageurs typically get short the buyer and long the object of desire in acquisitions, the X puts and AKS calls make the U.S. Steel buyout rumors all the more interesting.

AK Steel had dipped early this month after Goldman Sachs removed the company from its conviction buy list, but since then AKS shares have been generally trading higher and ended Friday up 5% to $9.11. U.S. Steel had been following roughly the same path but fell almost 3% to $30.61.

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This article was written by a staff member of RealMoney.com.