Thursday, October 04, 2007


OK, think this through with me. When is the last time on television or radio or in the newspaper, any where for that matter, you heard the phrase "No Comment". Now, when is the last time you hear the phrase "No Comment" and that was a good thing? Let's imagine..."You just won the Superbowl, what are you going to do now...(reply) No Comment"..."Oooohhh, how cute, congratulations on the birth of your new baby...(reply) No Comment"...Doctor Rosen Rosen invented a cure for cancer and won the nobel peace prize and as he goes up to the podium he modestly says, "No Comment."...

None of that makes sense. The term "No Comment" is primarily reserved for the accused, politicians, and attorneys (just typing that makes me realize those three groups share a similar lack of scruples) or someone that is hiding terrible news.

This morning at 7am Eastern, the Bank of England left rates unchanged and said, "NO COMMENT". What is the likelihood that it was No Comment because they didn't want the world to know that it was a unanimous vote to leave rates unchanged, they didn't want to tell the world how great the British economy is doing or they had no concerns of the credit crunch and housing market? Could it be they left a no comment because they are concerned about how bad the news is and how much it would shock their currency if they exposed the whole truth of their decisions (minutes will be released on October 17th). I am betting on the second and I am a little surprised that the world market didn't read between the lines on this one. Lots of bad news and a weakening pound but No Comment must have been because they were tired and didn't want to say anything today.

Looking at the previous blog on why I thought the pound should weaken and why we should have heard dovish comments out of the Bank of England, I began my search for the right pair to trade and I found it in a peculiar place. I found it on the Gbp/Chf. This is not necessarily because I think this will be the most profitable trade, more that it is one of the easiest pairs to analyze and control risk. In the chart you can see a nice down trend over the past couple of months with an approach and likely bounce off of resistance.

Risk can be controlled with a 200 pips stop and a potential reward of nearly 500 pips if not more. As time goes on and if the lower trend line is reached, the lower trend line could be as low as 2.32 for a 750 pip move.

The problem with this trade is that the CHF is a weak currency. The benefit is, if I am right about the GBP, the minutes will reveal the dovish sentiment and further unwind "carry trade" pairs including the GBP/CHF pair.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Falling Ethanol, Diverging Oil, and the pound getting pounded...Maybe?

I am going to make this a brief analysis and looking at 3 correlations occurring right now. Starting with Ethanol, Ethanol is a corn based fuel that acts as a direct substitute for oil based products. Looking at the December 2007 CBOT Ethanol Futures, there are two things to note. First note, a high point in March/April time frame and second, a consistent downtrend to today.

If the demand is decreasing for the primary substitute for oil, this causes me to believe the demand in general has been falling recently for oil. What has oil been doing in the time from March until now? Climbing, surprisingly enough.

Oil has climbed up and hit record highs over the past couple of weeks. If you look at the price at the pump, at least here, retail gas has not increased while oil has climbed up approximately 26% or climbed from $65 to $82.50 a barrel. Retail prices should have increased by about the same or higher. Why hasn't it? No increased demand while price is rising. This is a divergence in the inter-market analysis.

As seen in this image, both the CCI and the RSI (differing times) are diverging from the price. In most cases the price snaps back in line with the indicator, if this is one of those times, I would expect oil to fall.

The pound has not really benefited as of late on such a significant move on oil. Why? Possibly the concern of the housing market, slowing global economy, maybe the fact that the price is going up but demand is not means less purchases from British Petroleum.

Now what does that have to do with anything going on right now? This week we are going to hear the Bank of England rate decision. If I my assumption of slowing demand and increasing price is correct, the lower than expected trade balance we saw 3 weeks ago from Britain would be correct. If the GDP is slow, PPI has been low and housing is still struggling than the economy is not growing enough to be concerned about inflation. Sound familiar? It should, this is not far off from what the FOMC was looking at, slowing economy, inflation not as much of a concern as housing and BLAMMO, a rate cut.

I don't expect a rate cut from the B of E, but I wouldn't be surprised if they became very dovish in the comments which could weaken the pair near a resistance level. Look for a short oportunity, not necessarily against the USD but maybe against the AUD or the EUR or the CAD or anything that has shown recent strength. You have between now and Wednesday night (US Wednesday Night) to find a good risk position...

...or what about an option on the BPX?

How did you know?

I received an email this morning asking how I knew not to chase the USD/CAD and that it would retrace early in the week to test 1.00. Simple, buy good hardware.

Remember the 1.00 is a strong psychological barrier and likely will hold. At this point simply watch for it to stop going up, look for a peak with low risk and trade.