Friday, October 09, 2009

Retail Hell (a trader's guide)

More of the same today. I'm not making much long-side money - since I'm so sick-conservative.

No problem. Not today. Today I'm shopping Sunday underwater hunt-and-grunt getaway packages. I can't leave yet, since I'm keeping on hand tomorrow night for the 90-minute set of Bob Dylan Christmas songs, but after that I'm out of here.

I know you guys like PCLN as a short (I'm still avoiding such frisky behavior, conservative as I am), but I'm a big customer of their product. I love arriving to far-flung corners of the world between 11Pm and midnight local time and getting home a couple of hours before the market's open on Monday.

Given my consumer habits (I'm gnawing on organic pigs knuckles just now, while warming last night's spaghetti, below), I'm pretty much the worst example of "going with what you know." 3-piece woot suits and rubber-band harpoons aren't going to sway the mainstream anytime soon.

What I've noticed though, as far as retail, is that if the stock is hot and I would never consider myself a likely customer of the product, I'm inclined to like the stock even more. Case in point at the moment would be ULTA Salon/Cosmetics (ULTA). The fact that the website is a gross violation of common sense and decency (credit Ignatius J. Reilly), gives me that much more confidence they are onto something I want to be a part of. Similar big winners of the past include things like Nutrisystems, Coach, Dress Barn, Chico's (love the fat-velvet look, btw), Ross from Hell Stores, Dollar in my pocket Tree, Big Lots (god save me), Walmart, True Religion, Barbie, Clap-on Clap-off, Klic-Clack, ZZZ-best Carpet System and Nordic Track!

I think Nordic Track was symbol CML at the time; one of the greatest ride-it up and short-em-down plays from the 1990's. Rubber-band technology (a favorite of mine, harpoon in hand) was the death of them. We loved Nordic Track dearly, but I was going to break my legs on purpose before getting on one of those rat traps.

You are correct, I still don't have much to say regarding the current market. In fact, I'm pulling in a couple of names long today (stepping out for now on SXCI, BCSI and I have silly-priced orders higher-up for a few others). I'm going to get smaller (likely, at least) and prepare for the inevitable underarm armageddon y'all been warning me about.

Actually, earnings begin flooding en mass starting Tuesday. I don't expect anything in particular, especially since I try to not expect just on principal, but given the lack of spirited direction on either side of the market at the moment I see no reason to have my neck out very far.

Undersea however, I intend to extend all appendages; bandaged or otherwise; apperati or not; and expect the worst.

-Total Position: ~2-to-1 net-long
-65% invested
-Pure-longs = 50%

Currently Long (according to size): DGW (7%), HRBN (6.7%), SWM (6.2%), WYN (5.3%), ULTA (5%), CLW (4.5%), HMIN (4%), CFSG (3.9%), PTI (3.8%), RINO (3.3%)

Currently Short (according to size):
-TWM-long (Russell 2k Dbl-short, reloaded today, 10%)
(Note: inverse-ETF TWM represents being dbl-short the respective R2k-index).
-TER (5.2%)

Futures Accounts: no current position

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