Thursday, March 15, 2007

Dummy Trade of the Day - Accredited Home Lenders Holding Co. (Public, NASDAQ:LEND)

As discussed last night, LEND was front and center for me this morning following yesterday's late day surge on high volume. It was very active in the pre-market and gapped up on the open.

The first bar closed weak as expected because a lot of traders who picked up the stock late in the session yesterday, sold the open. The second bar was bullish and the third bar was a neutral inside bar. The fact that the third stick closed in the upper third of the previous bullish bar and printed much less volume, was a plus. An entry above the base formed by the second and third bar highs was contemplated, however, I decided to stick to the rules and wait for the OR high to be taken out. The fourth bar edged above the OR high and closed very strong. At this point, I thought the stock was going to run away from me, but luckily it retested the breakout point, allowing for a second chance to get long. I waited for the rising 5 period EMA to edge up even closer and entered at the beginning of the 6th bar.

Based on the heavy pre-market trade, my ultimate target was a gap fill, however, knowing that was extremely ambitious, my strategy was to stay in the trade until the target was met as long as price did not breach the 5 period EMA on a closing basis. Within that strategy I leave myself open to exit, if things get disorderly or suspect. After tagging the 38% Fibonacci extension, things got a little suspect as a series of "out of the money" transactions started printing on the time and sales screen. This action lasted 10 minutes and was extremely disruptive to the chart pattern especially on the lower timeframes. However, it did not affect the level II screens so I hung in. If we remove the long tail on the 8th bar which was caused by the out of the money trades going through, we have a very orderly chart. Volume was momo and much stronger on the green sticks than the red ones. The gap fill and tag of the 100% Fibonacci extension occurred on extremely high volume, almost a euphoric volume spike, marking the end of the move. There were a lot of shorts being covered in this move today because of yesterday's strong close and the absence of more bad news on the sub-prime lending group.


A student reader bought LEND in the upper range on today's action and asks what to do now that the stock closed lower than the purchase price. I can't give investment advice, however, I can read the chart for you. Based on today's close, we have an unconfirmed bullish island reversal. In order for this bullish reversal to confirm, we need to keep today's opening gap, at least partially unfilled.

LEND has been on a path of lower highs and lower lows for quite some time. We need a trend change which means higher lows and eventually higher highs. I know that the stock is trading lower in after hours, however, today's bullish volume spike could signal a reversal is at hand. One thing is for sure, expect more volatility.

Here is an interesting comment courtesy of Briefing.com:

Floor Talk: More on short-covering in the subprimes : As we've mentioned a number of times in the past couple of days, the short-covering in the subprime lenders continues at an aggressive pace. The notable movers today include NEWC.PK, LEND, NFI, FMT, DFC, CCRT, FED, CFC, IMH, and NDE, although basically the whole group is moving higher. Essentially, when everyone is leaning on the same names -- and they stop going down -- everyone starts to cover at the same time, which in this case has led to a truly impressive short squeeze... In addition, a couple of other factors have given further incentive for shorts to cover: 1) the morning bombshell headlines from the group have (at least temporarily) stopped appearing each morning, so the morning headline risk has subsided somewhat; and 2) there has been chatter that some of the big brokers (BSC, GS, etc) could start shopping for assets among the subprime wreckage; the WSJ ran a story on GS to that effect on Wed, and BSC and LEH suggested during their conference calls that they might start looking for opportunities in the subprime area... One final observation is that the markets have been hammering the subprimes for weeks now (i.e. pricing in the bad news), yet the US Congress seems to have just noticed it this week when various members threatened to hold hearings/sponsor legislation on subprime lending practices. In other words, the sound and fury that is starting to emanate from Congress is occurring after some major damage has already been done (in the past, Congress has at times served as a contrarian indicator in situations like this... for example, think of the oil profiteering hearings that occurred right around the time that crude oil peaked)... In short, it's impossible to tell how far the short-covering of the past two days will take the subprime stocks, but the one thing traders can count on in the coming days & weeks is extreme volatility.

5 comments:

Glenn said...

Nice trade Jamie!

Anonymous said...

Do you think what we are seeing with the subprime meltdown is a reverse bubble? All of the stocks in this sector are not going to go bankrupt. How many of these companies are being pummeled by unregulated hedge funds? The paper is not worthless as not all subprime mortgages have defaulted, and they are backed by real assets. How much of this is pure manipulation with financial instruments such as naked shorting?

OONR7 said...

great trade and excellent call!

Vtomer said...

Jamie,

You are a great person. I will be regularly looking for this blog for the rest of my trading decisions. I hope to be a active member to this group.

Sincerely,
Vivek

Jamie said...

Thanks Glen, oonr7, and Vivek!

@ Anon - I agree its a game of fast money, much of which is manipulated. There are still no shares available to short LEND today, which means after covering yesterday, the Hedge funds have reinstated their short positions. Since the rest of the market is range bound, all traders are focused on this group.