Mid-afternoon Musings; Amazon Shorting: Doug Kass' Views

Here are Doug Kass' top thoughts on some of the biggest stories of the week.

Mid-afternoon Musings

After much volatility, we saw little volatility Tuesday.
 
The market bent a bit but didn't break in Tuesday's trading session.
 
David Tepper says stocks are attractive. By contrast, I believe stocks are priced to "legislative and economic perfection!" See my Bloomberg interview Monday.
 
I generally see a lot of optimism on the business airways. But, considering the lack of predictability and uncertainty coupled with Thursday's schmeissing -- I am not sure if I understand that state of mind.
 
I certainly don't understand what seems to be a degree of self confidence I have observed this week.
 
* Bond weakness is a feature. (Goof for our Trade of the Week, long ProShares UltraShort Lehman 20+ Year ETF ( TBT) . The 10-year yield is up by nearly five basis points and the 2s/10s is two basis points steeper.
* The U.S. dollar is stronger Tuesday.
* Crude flatlines (Energy Select Sector SPDR ETF ( XLE) at a multiweek-low near $63), but gold -$11.50. (The later, as I have mentioned, seems vulnerable after the move higher). Remember the business media universal positive view on gold post market close on Thursday. Now, crickets.
* Ag commodities continues to behave poorly with 2% losses again for wheat, corn and soybeans. I would be careful of the fertilizers.
* Gaming stocks are strong, led by Wynn Resorts ( WYNN) (a Bobby Lang fav).
* Optical is a sorespot in a mixed tech market. Most optical stocks are making multi week lows.
* Banks began the session strong and are now near day's lows, but still positive.
* I pared back Hartford Financial ( HIG) .
* Ag equipment and autos are weak.
* Retail remains week. I was this close to shorting Home Depot ( HD) late Monday (pre earnings) but I 'chickened out' owing to my already large net and gross short exposure. Paradise lost.
* FANG is nondescript but Google (Alphabet) ( GOOGL) is now -$90 from recent highs (I have been cautioning). Amazon ( AMZN) , a short, blasted off in the AM and is now near the day's lows and at break even.
* Apple ( AAPL) is the world's fair. I have been trading around a small short here.
* The Russell isn't crowing again. I established a short Tuesday in iShares Russell 2000 ETF ( IWM) .
* Biotech has cooled off. Allergan ( AGN) continues to be a thorn in my side, though I reduced on this price drop and technical disappointment. (Damn, Teva!)
* Interesting speculative biotech company, FibroGen ( FGEN) down on a secondary offering.
* Bitcoin, the object of my disaffection this morning, is trading all over the place Tuesday.
 
Position: Long TBT SDS large QID SQQQ small AGN small HIG small; Short TLT SPY large IWM QQQ AAPL small .

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