W.O.O.D. – 15 Sept 2017

This is another of the W.O.O.D. series of semi-regular
Weekly Occasional Open Discussions.
(i.e. if I forget and skip one, no big)

Immediate prior one here:
and remains open for threads running there
(at least until the ‘several month’ auto-close of comments on stale threads).

Cannonical list of old ones here: https://chiefio.wordpress.com/category/w-o-o-d/

So use “Tips” for “Oooh, look at the interesting ponder thing!”
and “W.O.O.D” for “Did you see what just happened?! What did you think about it?”

For this week, I’m going to toss 4 topics in the hopper.

1) Yet Another Bombing Attack in London. It did a squib, so something like 18 injured, nobody killed, but it was bucket sized. Had the whole thing gone off on the train, it would have been a huge deal. So the UK is getting what, one every 2 weeks now? How many or what rate before the UK Citizens decide “multicultural suicide” is a bad idea?

2) North Korea: New missile launch today. Plenty of range, big boost phase. So when will the USA Tiger get tired of this mouse chewing on its tail and just squash the sucker?
Don’t tell me: just AFTER we lose Pearl Harbor, again.

3) Markets tried to rally higher, barely did, then back to flatish. I’m not seeing much momentum either direction.

4) Trump again plays the Democrats Card. RINO RNC in a panic. MSM / LSM / Yellow Stream Media in a tizzy as it turns out “discussions” and “agreement to work together” are NOT just what they imagine is reality. They have heard of this reality thing, but are unacquainted with it… so flustered at anything unexpected or complicated.
Laugh, cry, buy popcorn futures? I donno…

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Posted in W.O.O.D. | Tagged , | 142 Comments

The Hurricanes Return!

After a dozen years or so Hurricane Drought, we’ve got them back in more normal numbers. Hurricanes are formed with the sea is warm enough relative to the air to cause a water vapor instability that cascades into a “circle down the drain” heat transport; but where the drain is “to space” up in the stratosphere. Since the sun went quiet, the upper air has gotten colder, so now the heat that built up in the oceans during high UV times needs to be dumped. I expect active hurricane seasons until the waters get cold enough to balance the colder air aloft.

Harvey did a number on Texas
(and cancelled my drive to Florida… flew from Chicago instead).

Irma was arriving just as I flew out of Florida back to Chicago.

Now we’ve got Jose (per: http://www.hurricane.com/2017-hurricane-names.php) forming up.

So here’s a place to talk about all things Hurricane Related this (late) season. I’ll be adding some bits over time if I get the time.

FWIW, on the drive back Diesel prices were about 10 ¢ / gallon higher than on the way out. Gasoline moved more but I don’t have exact numbers. Looks like in a real Aw Shit! that Diesel price and availability are more stable… Just sayin’…

The discussion began here:


On Sept. 5th just as I was getting on an airplane in Orlando… (Minor gripe on that: I got TSA Pre-Check for these 2 flights, to and from Orlando. In Chicago, no problem. Shoes on, laptops left in bags. In Orlando, guy insists on shoes off and electronics in one bin each, slowing the whole thing down and making it The Same As NON_Pre-Check. WT? So what’s wrong with Orlando?… Oh Well, the line was shorter…)

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Posted in AGW and Weather News Events, News Related | Tagged , | 76 Comments

The Pervasive Sniping From The Left – Enforcing PC

I had an interesting experience recently. I was at an event where it was mostly family and friends of various family members. Dinner and dancing and dress-up and all.

What was interesting to me (beyond just the event and the decorations and all) was the way (even among friends and family and even at a ‘special’ event) those holding a PC POV on a topic feel compelled to snipe and enforce that it is the right one. While I’m happy to let them think whatever they want to think, I must be “corrected” if I stray too far…

Now in fairness, this was a group rich in Vegetarians, Vegans, and other Left Advocates; and I’m modestly Right (or from their POV Flaming Bigoted Alt-Right Nutjob ;-)

So I made some fairly innocuous statements, each of which got a ‘snipe’ in return.

In one case a bunch of folks where doing a kind of a group rave dance thing. No one person particularly dancing with any other and the usual House Music heavy beat kind of music. Folks generally in their 20s mostly, some 30s?. I commented to another guy (an older bachelor, drifted California Left politically) that there seemed to be a shortage of guys dancing. Since there were about 2 guys and about 15 girls, a simple truth. Now he’s a single guy, and my intent was to encourage him to party too and maybe dance with them. But no. I was “politely scolded” with “They seem to be enjoying themselves just fine.” in a slightly condescending tone. The undertone being that you don’t need guys and girls to dance together… and I was evil for even hinting there was anything wrong. Then after that he seemed to choose to not be near me anymore. I guess I was contaminated…

Later, there was some conversation about one of the ladies who is a 20-something. My daughter’s good friend growing up; I’d known her since she was about 5 but had not seen her in a bunch of years. She has matured to be an absolutely beautiful young woman. She is tall, and with strong facial bone structure, laughing eyes, and what was once called a ‘statuesque’ build. She could be a Vegas Show Girl given her size and looks. Someone said she was studying to be a cook. I said (having grown up in the restaurant business and being a bit more aware of it than most) “You don’t put someone with her looks ‘back of house’, you put them ‘front of house'”. Meaning she has opportunities others do not have and can make a lot more money with a lot less work in a lot more pleasant environment. (I’ve worked in the kitchen. It is NOT pleasant.) Of course, one of the 30 something women at the table ‘corrected’ me with “I think she should do whatever she wants.” Again with a bit of a put-down tone of voice. The Retort Tone. As though I was advocating forcing her to give up a great love of the kitchen for sex slavery… 1/2 /sarc;

Toe that PC line and be hypersensitive to whatever misinterpretation someone might put on your intentions or be a pariah, I guess. The Left and Women’s Issues folks doesn’t ask for expansion or clarification on a point to see if there’s a positive motivation for a comment. They don’t think maybe it’s just a simple statement of how an industry works. No. Assume The Worst and Snipe a retort. Just tedious being around so many eggshells and landmines.

I did manage to avoid asking if there was any butter for the bread or about cream for the coffee or if I could get some cheese grated onto my salad or any of the other few dozen ways anyone who eats normally can get in trouble at a vegan / vegetarian event. (Honey? Don’t you know it’s not vegan and hurts the bees to steal their food!? Is the sugar vegan? Yeah… somewhere in the world some few places use gelatin to clarify the sugar solution prior to crystallization. Never mind that most places just spray dry it. Pay up and pay extra to assure no animal was anywhere near the sugar company or be an evil animal slaughterer… The list goes on… but do be aware a biscuit with butter and honey is Evil!… NO /sarc; )


OK, the event is over and I’ll not see 90% of the people who were there ever again. There’s a 1/2 dozen who are close family I’ll see again, and most of them will accept (i.e. tolerate) me despite my “defects”. Even if with some pity and distance. I’ve generally avoided letting them know how tedious they are or how much they can be oppressive of folks who do not believe their particular (bent?) POV. Being as this is California, and the more Loony Left Silicon Valley part of it, and the Vegan / Vegetarian excess of that, and, well, you get the picture; Given that, I’ve had some practice at ‘getting by’ here. But I think my time in Florida had my camouflage skills get rusty, though. I could just relax there and be me and only occasionally be accused of being Left Wing ;-)

It is an odd effect. Having strong left wing beliefs when in Florida and being seen as a Right Wing Nut in Silly Con Valley. Never actually changing what I believe in the transition. Near as I can tell I’m still the middle of the bird moderate I have been for the last 50 years.

In Florida (and more so in Texas visiting family) needing to not say things like “M.J. ought to be free to sell and grow by anyone” or “The Drug War is a stupid oppressive waste of resources” or “I’d have no problem dating a different race. In fact, I have.” And at the same time needing to be careful in California not to say things like “Maybe folks who are breaking the law to be here ought to go back to their own country and come in legally.” or “Pass the butter, please.” or even “She looks very nice in that dress”…

When did we as a society become so intolerant and in particular, when did The Left decide any stray from the PC Party Line (even one only a fantasy in the mind of the self appointed PC Police) was cause for derision and snide-itude?

I really don’t care if two girls or two guys want to dance together. In fact, I’ve danced with a gay guy. When the music slowed to ‘slow dance’, I decided not to run for the chairs but instead to stay on the dance floor. (Beer was involved and all the girls had run off to the bathroom together… and I really wanted to dance… in my defense… sort of…) Now I found out I really don’t like stubble and guys are not soft enough for my tastes, but still, I was willing to “go there” to find out. So how is it that in Texas and / or Florida that gets me The Hairy Eyeball from one side (they tend to be too polite to openly criticize or ‘correct’), but in California the fact that I decided I had a bit of a “yuck” reaction to beard and don’t like the whole thing gets me whacked from the other?

So here I am, basically middle-of-the-road on a lot of stuff. Left leaning on social issues mostly. Right leaning on money issues and rule of law, mostly. So both sides hate me. Sigh. But in California it is the incessant Left Wing Landmines you must watch out for, so that’s what I’ve stepped on mostly lately.

But it does get tedious dealing with the sniping and eggshell strewn culture.

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Posted in Human Interest | Tagged , , , | 26 Comments

Snow Is Here! (USA)

Must be that new “First Day Of Fall Hot Snow”… /sarc;

From: https://weather.com/maps/24hoursnowfallestimate

24 hour snow forecast from Thursday - Snow arrives in the continental 48

24 hour snow forecast from Thursday – Snow arrives in the continental 48

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Posted in AGW and Weather News Events | Tagged , , | 7 Comments

Sliding The Time Scope – Seeing Patterns In Stock Tickers

This posting will have three graphs for the same things, but starting at different points in time.

The purpose is to show how sliding the start of time changes the picture of what you see as history, how context changes the message.

We’ll start off with a 2 year daily view of SPY, GLD, TLT & RUT. S&P 500 US stocks ETF, Gold ETF, long term bonds ETF, and Russel 2000 small cap stocks. Then we’ll move to 1 year, then 6 months. You find slightly different things emphasized with each graph.

Note that since the “start of time” changes, all the tickers have their origin reset to start at the same place at different times in the 3 graphs. Much like in “Global Warming”, where your choice of start time changes what you see happening…

We start with the 2 year view. Here we see more of the lead-in context to the big change. Those ups and downs at the start, the “dip” about 1/2 way where GLD TLT swap places relative to SPY RUT. You can embiggen the graphs by clicking on them.

SPY vs Gold, Long Bonds, Russel 2000 2 year daily

SPY vs Gold, Long Bonds, Russel 2000 2 year daily

Until the mid-point, Gold and Long Bonds have a big lead on stocks. After the mid point they lag. Something happened at the mid point to drastically reduce worry about risk. (Any guesses? ;-) There was a giant rush upward in “risky” small cap small business stocks, and a drop in ‘low risk’ gold and long bonds.

At the start of the new year, back on the left edge, we have a giant drop in stocks and a huge burst in volume. MACD very negative (below zero red on top) and ADX/ DMI showing DMI- (red) way on top with high force of momentum (ADX 30). The world was worried about “something” and reacting. In September and October that “worry” returned, with force, and we again have stocks dropping, but this time even TLT and GLD are also taking a hit. Don’t know just where folks were “running to” but it was somewhere else. Perhaps cash, perhaps just out of the USA. MACD again below zero, but not as much. There was some kind of hope that was missing before. ADX was below 20 at the start of October, slowly building after that. Some slow build of confidence started then, and gained force for the next month and a half, peaking at about 35. A fairly high ADX number.

In early November, the volume bars have a big spike of black (positive volume, or volume on up market movement) bars. RUT goes rushing past SPY and both are running up fairly fast. MACD shoots into positive territory and has ‘blue on top” as does DMI. We’re off to the races!

I’m sure by now folks have noticed that it was the First Tuesday of November that was the big win day for positive attitudes, and that it was the “OMG Not Hillary!!!!” panic causing the down shots prior. Here, in one graph, you can see the impact of the primaries, and the election, on stock prices and bond / gold prices.

Since the election, stocks have risen, gold has regained some punch, and bonds have been tepid. Recently, RUT has fallen behind. The emphasis is moving to bigger more staid companies. That can be a sign of worry, or it can just be a sign that it takes a lot more money over a longer period of time to move the stock of a mega-cap company.

Most worrying is that volume has had a steady downtrend from the Big Panic at the far left. The stock market is a volume seeking machine and that tends to indicate a desire to “create some volume via panic”… Essentially, as “everyone is bought in” volume dries up and the way to make more is to scare people into selling. That’s where the short sellers come in. In that creating panic stage. Some excuse will be trotted out. Bombing North Korea. Impeaching Trump. Failure to repeal Obamacare or get tax cuts. Any excuse will do. The real mechanism is folks with $Billions shorting YOUR stocks to panic you. Just when it starts is an open question. I’d give it about 5 to 6 months max at the moment, but it has high error bands right now.

Note that MACD ‘bumps above zero’ are getting lower and lower. ADX dropped to an astounding 11 just before the recent bump up out of the summer drop. We ARE at MACD above zero blue on top and DMI blue on top and all, but… look at those black volume bars at the very right edge. Damn small volume to the upside run. Look at the price bars in the main ticker on the far right edge. VERY small range (low volatility) and just “squinchy”. All squashed small and flat. Not Good.

OK, lets pull it in to a 1 year more standard chart. What changes from this POV:

SPY vs Gold, Long Bonds, Russel 1 year daily

SPY vs Gold, Long Bonds, Russel 1 year daily

Well, first off, we’ve lost all that pre-election panic area where the Hillary Witch was scaring everyone. Now we just see the climb out of the Trump win, stocks taking off and bonds / gold as “risk off” trades lagging badly.

The slow decay of MACD ripples to every lower is more evident, as is the ADX strength decay from 40 down to 10. The big rush up is running out of steam. In August DMI+/- (blue red) becomes confused and weaving. The decay of volume is even easier to spot. You can also see that the at the very far right we’ve got near dead flat small price bars and vanishing volume both up and down. The market is slowing to a stall. That tends to be when shorts come in. Gold and Bonds are dropping too. No “safe haven” and “somebody” is raising cash for “something”…

At this time scale we see just the one event, and then the run-out from it. It focuses more on the general change of the market over the year, and not much more.

So let’s move in to the 6 month time scope. Past the election, more of a ‘what have you done for me lately?’ POV. Easier to see daily ticks, but little context of history.

Loss of that historical drop of gold and bonds and resetting their start point has them generally rising with stocks (but from that lower, now hidden, start). There is an “odd convergence” at the far right as all the tickers are headed for an intercept point. Meaningful, or accident of start point bias?

SPY vs Gold, Long Bonds, Russel 6 months daily

SPY vs Gold, Long Bonds, Russel 6 months daily

We can clearly see the more “squashed” shape of the price bars and their (nearly) hard top action as they run into shorts on price rise attempts. Scanning volume we see down days (red bars) mostly outpacing up days (black bars) on volume. Not good.

The MACD “wobble down” is a bit harder to see as the context is less, but still visible. The black “histogram” works a bit better here as we can see the above / below zero coming into balance. ADX is flatlined for about a month and a half at near 10. This market is “going nowhere fast” at the moment. Yes, recently is has had DMI+ (blue line) go to the top, but that was just a run out of the recent dip (failed shorts run?). With ADX at 10 there is no force behind this recent run up. Volume in the last few far right bars is dismal, and with down days about double the up days on volume.

So at a very close look, this looks like a market in trouble. It has no direction, so would be easy for shorts to push around with a few $Billion. It is long in the tooth, so “everyone is bought in” no one left to buy (up volume very weak).

Looking at the SMA stack, we still have normal order. (Price over shortest average over longer averages). But that only inverts once the market has changed direction. For now it still is saying “Market in an up trend”, but it is a lagging confirming indicator, not a leading predicting one like Volume+ and ADX/DMI.

Now, what’s happening in the Political Front?

Trump is under strong attack from The Left.
His tax and company benefits (repeal Obamacare) initiatives are stalled.
RHINOs are at his heels.
etc. etc.

In short, the anticipated “pay off” for businesses are not on the books and looking less likely.

Similarly, we have “scares” with things like North Korea and damage from Hurricanes.

Is that what we see in this graph, too? Or just a ‘fully bought’ market?
Which is the reality and which is “The Story”? (“There is always a story.” -E.M.Smith)

Does that really matter?

So for me, it is still a time to be cautious, but not fully out. Tighten stop loss orders. Dump weak positions. Look into “rotation” into stronger more downturn resistant positions, but not yet “Run, just run for the gold”.

In Conclusion

Hopefully this helps to illustrate how to read charts and how to see the Political-Economy reflected in markets. It also ought to illustrate how choice of “start of time” biases what you see in time series (and part of why I’m particularly sensitive to start-of-time being in the Little Ice Age for temperature data…)

Secondarily, the ‘granularity’ of daily makes it hard to see some details in long charts like 2 to 5 year daily, but they stand out on close inspection in a 6 month chart (though with loss of context). For this reason I keep shifting my time scope to see both bits of information.

Third, while not in these charts, it ought to give you perspective on the use of 10 year weekly and 10 day hourly charts. That one (the 10 year) gives LOTS of context, but not much of “what is happening now”, while the other gives much more detail on “what are folks thinking today” but devoid of the wider context. This is also the reason why when a longer term chart “becomes confused” (i.e. has gone flat as ‘change is in the air’) I shift to the next shorter time scope for may actions. Eventually ending at the 10 day chart. It will show the resolution to the outer time scope first, and gives me the fastest reaction to that change. So as 10 year goes flat, I shift to swing trading, then as 1 year goes flat, I shift more toward day trading or “run to cash” and wait for a clear change of direction.

Yet at that time scope, right now is lacking in direction too. What have we got here? Basically end of day positive volume as the end of month mutual fund buys from long term retirement investors buy a chunk and not much else. What happens when the end of month is over?

SPY vs gold, long bonds, Russel 10 day 15 minute

SPY vs gold, long bonds, Russel 10 day 15 minute

It is essentially dead flat for 8 days without even day trade opportunities. It looks to me like a dead market waiting for something. Is that something war with North Korea, or just October 1 and a good chance to short all the end of month 401K buyers?

Hard to say, but I know I don’t want to be playing in that game right now…

So, yes, I’m mostly sitting in cash at the moment. Waiting for direction to mature.

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Posted in Economics - Trading - and Money | Tagged , , , , | 7 Comments

California Advocating States Rights – To Ignore Immigration Law

It would seem that advocating for States Rights only means “evil right wing racist” when done by those not on the far left…

California has just voted to ignore Federal Law and Authority by ignoring immigration law. One of the few places where the Feds have clear authority at that.


California lawmakers approve landmark ‘sanctuary state’ bill to expand protections for immigrants

Jazmine Ulloa Contact Reporter

California lawmakers on Saturday passed a “sanctuary state” bill to protect immigrants without legal residency in the U.S., part of a broader push by Democrats to counter expanded deportation orders under the Trump administration.

The legislation by Sen. Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles), the most far-reaching of its kind in the country, would limit state and local law enforcement communication with federal immigration authorities, and prevent officers from questioning and holding people on immigration violations.

On Newsmax one commenter suggested Texas ought to just ignore Obamacare and cite California as precedent…

Well, at least Trump will know where to find most of the illegal immigrants…

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Posted in Political Current Events | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments