Mr. Sensitive

August 12, 2011

FSX Friday Update

Filed under: Uncategorized — lbej @ 16:58

I’ve already had a lot to say about the market’s total failure as a rational discounting mechanism for the entirety of this week.  Well-considered expectations don’t change so violently overnight—sentiment does.  Here’s the final tally:

  • Monday – down 600+
  • Tuesday – up 400+
  • Wednesday – down 500+
  • Thursday – up 400+
  • Friday – up 100+

I asked Reagan to call the close on Friday, because she spent a good deal of time in first grade studying patterns, and also because she knows as much about the short-term direction of the market as I do.  She said down 400.  I said, why not?  I want to add one more point about the internals of the market.  Volume has been heavy throughout, especially on the dips, and so the novice gumshoe might conclude that the professional money managers are fully engaged, trading the undulations and scooping up bargains.  Um, no.  Some of them are doing that, the ones who haven’t seen this kind of thing before and the ones who were already trailing their benchmarks and need to trade the vol to make something happen.  But a really small number of really scared people can generate a really tremendous flood of orders.  Do you suppose that the money runners who were already at the beach packed up their families (or rousted out their call girls) and rushed back to Manhattan?  Um, again, no.  Folks who have seen this before have, for lack of a better description, seen this before.  This chaos doesn’t make the pros want to jump in—it makes them want to do nothing as forcefully as nothing can be done.  It makes them wish they had Tanooki suits so they could just turn to stone and let the Koopas, ah, day traders stampede by.  Let the VIX fall, they think, and then we’ll run some screens and turn over some rocks and decide what we ought to do.  In the meanwhile, keep the daiquiris coming until after Labor Day.

The Family Stock Index hit its worst level in 11 months on Monday, but by the end of the week had erased much of that loss.  Nevertheless, we finished down 3.1% for the week to end at 1062.15, well above Monday’s 1003.10 close but lagging all the major indices yet again.  Two weeks ago we were neck-and-neck with the S&P 500 for 2011; now we’re more than 500 basis points behind.  Somebody do something, Justin!


  • Reagan (REGN) +15.7%.  Dear Reagan, they’re not going to start school for you any sooner than they’re going to start it for the normal kids who don’t want summer to end, so you can take your backpack off now.  Or I guess you can just leave it on for a couple more weeks.
  • Ruby (RBY) +8.1.  All the market wants is to know that people are paying attention.  It doesn’t expect you to know what I’m talking about, or even what you’re talking about.  In fact, it prefers to hide its naked vicissitudes behind technical jargon and mathematical modeling.  Otherwise, you’d realize this is a really crappy way to gamble away your life savings, and everyone would just go to Vegas so that they can at least have cocktail shrimp on the house while they blow all their money.
  • Lulu (LULU +8.5%) and Marisa (MOLX +3.8%).  The market has cottoned to my new cat box plan, which is to empty those befouled plastic pits every other day without fail.  I put it on the list, and if it’s on the list it gets done.  So either the cats are enjoying a cleaner litter experience, or they’ve advanced Operation Poop Pillow near to the point of execution.  MSTR LEE is down over 8% this week, so I’m afraid it may be the latter.
  • Charlotte (ICE) +4.3%.  We’re all waiting breathlessly here for The Decision.  Will Team Charlotte be interviewed by Jim Gray when they make their announcement?  Will Zero grow a ridiculous neck beard for the occasion?  I don’t believe Charlotte will be taking her talents to South Beach, but someplace south of Chicago is a safe bet.  So if it’s South Dakota, expect an epic sell-off.
  • Lisa (LSI) +2.9%.  The Empress reports via one of her Internet societies that Lisa is having a splendid time in Hilton Head this week.  There was partaking of nature, there was riding of horses.  I think of horses as faster, meaner cows that I’m not allowed to eat, but I realize mine is a minority view.  Lisa has held up well during the recent market swoon, but her test will come during the short, cold, horseless days of autumn and winter soon to come.


  • Brinkley (BCO) -6.3%.  This week we watched some home videos that my Dad made of the four of his kids and our Mom circa 1988-1990, and I realized as we were watching that it was young Brinky’s first exposure to old Brinkley.  Which he probably glossed right over, because it was also his first exposure to the clothing his father and his uncles wore in the late 80s.  Do you remember Body Glove?  Of course you don’t.  But if Marcus wore something else, we certainly didn’t get to see it.  In combination with the beach/surfing-themed clothes Brinky got in Hilton Head, he may have leapt to conclusions about his future wardrobe prospects fully commensurate with a 10% stock decline.  No wonder he’s having trouble sleeping—he’s having day-glo nightmares.
  • Marcus (MCS) -6.7%.  Marcus has broken through his 52-week low this week, and while he’s not alone in that regard, he’s testing the lows of last summer as well, something the rest of the FSX has yet to do.  Alas, Marcus has dropped off the face of the earth again, as he is wont to do from time to time, and I don’t know what might have precipitated the latest leg of the decline.  Presumably he will be heading back to school again soon, meaning a return to two of the things he genuinely enjoys: his job, and complaining about his job.  Teaching is an endless source of joy and pain for Marcus, like crushing other MCs is for Rob Base and DJ E-Z Rock.  Which makes me think of sock hops when I was in middle school.  I wonder if Marcus chaperones at sock hops.  Probably not, since they don’t have sock hops in high school anyplace but Wytheville and the 1950s.
  • Lee (MSTR LEE) -8.2%.  Keep it coming, supranational spider-shark cabal.  Keep stabbing, stabbing, stabbing and you’re gonna let me see the knife, and then the sucka holding it.  After that it won’t be nathin left but a pile of eyes and fins.
  • Jenny (LEN) -8.7%.  Jenny received word this week that she aced her AG testing and she’ll be in the accelerated and gifted classes beginning next year.  She’s excited, but it will mean a lot more effort and focus, so no more racing through her homework before she gets off the bus in the afternoon.  That’s a good-and-bad scenario, though, and not the sort of thing the market can size up definitively before the school year starts.  Jenny’s endless maladies, on the other hand, have been measured and judged harshly.  Her stomach hurts, her eye hurts, her foot hurts, her leg hurts, her teeth hurt…wait, that last one was Reagan.  But I can be forgiven for losing track.  We will have to take her to the doctor next week about the stomach aches if they don’t subside, but if they didn’t uncannily disappear every time Jenny has a chance to play with one of her friends, I would be more concerned.
  • Katie (CATY) -9.4%.  The Empress says it’s going to be alright, so it’s going to be alright.  I don’t have the temerity to question so forceful an Imperial decree, even when I’m the one being decreed at, and the decree-er obviously doesn’t know about the spider-shark cabal.
  • Mario T.Y. (SUP -11.9%) and Nicole L. (COL -8.3%).  I bet that you can get carried away planning a wedding.  I wouldn’t know about that, but I definitely could get into having some giant ice sculptures of superheroes towering over the receiving line.  So two pieces of advice before this nuptial downdraft gets even more severe: first, the Dr. Doom ice sculpture isn’t going to look as awesome in the reception hall as it does in the picture; and second, you might think that it’s okay to order extra subgum fried rice because you can just save the leftovers, but you would be wrong.  That stuff doesn’t keep well.
  • Icarus (FLOW) -16.2%.  The Decision has got to be nerve-wracking for Icarus because, like Chris Bosh, he just wants to chill.  More precisely, he wants to run across a vast grassy, plain, chasing rabbits until he catches them all, and then he wants to chill.  What about Montana? he asks.  Why do we have to go to these smoggy, crowded places covered in asphalt and concrete?  Chicago is doo-doo, L.A. is doo-doo, D.C. is doo-doo.  Montana is rabbits.  Say it, Justin.
  • Zero (FRZ) -16.3%.  Strange that Charlotte would be one of the week’s clear winners while Zero is clocked by 15% a second week in a row.  According to the Empress—Charlotte doesn’t talk to me—Zero is doing a bang-up job at work, and everyone there knows it.  I sympathize, actually.  I was good at what I did, too, and there were parts of my job that I really did enjoy (I was unaccompanied for all those parts, I believe).  But it wasn’t the thing I needed to be doing, and the fact that I was having a lot of success made it easier to live with it in the moment, but harder to move on.  It’s not exactly the same situation for Zero, of course, but the bottom line is the same: it’s not easy to be so awesome.
Name Ticker 8/12/2011 Change
Brinkley BCO $24.15 -1.63
Charlotte ICE $114.88 +4.72
Dustin DST $46.38 -1.51
Icarus FLOW $2.58 -0.50
Jenny LEN $14.09 -1.34
Justin WOLF $2.72 -0.09
Katie CATY $11.42 -1.18
Lee MSTR $122.62 -5.78
Lee LEE $0.71 -0.10
Lisa LSI $6.99 +0.20
Lucas LEI $2.20 -0.10
Lulu LULU $58.15 +4.58
Marcus MCS $8.30 -0.60
Mario T.E. PBY $8.90 -0.35
Mario T.Y. SUP $16.27 -2.20
Marisa MOLX $20.94 +0.76
Nicole B. NI $19.63 +0.08
Nicole L. COL $46.57 -4.22
Reagan REGN $54.18 +7.37
Ruby RBY $3.87 +0.29
Wilson WILC $5.82 -0.15
Winston HWD $13.94 -0.18
Zero FRZ $2.06 -0.40
Zondro ZQK $4.21 -0.27


  1. Word on the street is that you’d kill your own brother a thousand times.

    I think my (and Nicole’s) lack of change this week points to the absolute uncertainty about where I’ll be or what I’ll be doing in, say, a month’s time. This job hunting business, it’s no good. And the market for journalists, while immeasurably superior to that for actors, is doodoo. Should’ve been a software engineer.
    Zero is down, I believe, because I never watch him play videogames, even though he often gives me his full attention. Icarus is down because I offered to walk our neighbor’s dog this week, and dear lord the jealousy is killing him.

    I’d wager that Charlotte is up because we’re counting down to major change, and she’s at her best when everything falls apart.

    Comment by Justin — August 12, 2011 @ 17:44 | Reply

    • Good call on Charlotte. You need to do a guest FSX Friday Update one of these days.

      Comment by lbej — August 12, 2011 @ 18:21 | Reply

    • It’s not on the street. It’s in the air. Tonight.

      Comment by lbej — August 12, 2011 @ 18:22 | Reply

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