Today’s Links: Great TA, Apple TV, and Ford vs Carter debate

Here’s what I was reading and thinking about this morning.  If you are a advocate for technical analysis in your trading, I highly suggest you start reading the first three guys I link to there. They are some of the best stock technical analysts on the planet.  Let’s test these levels then.

Gary Smith’s Market Take for December 19, 2011 – I read Gary Smith’s Market Take every morning as part of my routine in preparing for the coming trading day. You should too. Every day. He’s one of the best market commentators out there.

Scott Fullman’s “Technically Speaking” Diary – Scott’s become one of the best Technical Analysis traders extant. “The S&P 500 Index (SPX) failed at its 50-day moving average and the Russell 2000 Index (RUT) failed at its grouped 20-day and 50-day moving averages. Bank stocks are sharply lower, according to the 2.5% drop for the KBW Bank Index (BKX). Also dropping sharply is the Guggenheim Airline ETF (FAA), which is falling 3.2% and dragging down the Dow Jones Transportation Average (DJTA). We also note that the 50-day moving average is crossing above the Dow Jones Utility Average (DJUA), which remains in a sideways configuration.”

Jeff Miller’s “ETF Exchange” Diary – Jeff’s steady TA approach never seems to waver and I’ve seen him catch so many darn trading bottoms and tops in the last few months that I’m beginning to wonder if that great system he calls “Felix” is actually just some sort of a time machine.

Buckle down and sell losers, buy winners – Very good guidance from Tom Lloyd Sr from Marketwatch’s Trading Deck. Great traders are as good at selling losers as taking profits on winners.

Throw the bums out! – Bruce Krasting with a great call-out of the guys “serving” in the Republican/Democrat Regime. A very provocative piece, including comments like “These clowns love this stuff. It has nothing to do with the right choices; it’s about the next election. They don’t give a damn about the country or it’s citizens. It’s about keeping their powerful jobs. I know whom I’m voting for in the next election. I’m voting against anyone that is currently ‘in’. I don’t care what stripe they wear. I want the other guy/gal. I’m going to vote against Chuck Schumer and all the other ‘ins’. I want to send a message to every damn one of them. The ones who have their hands on any levers today; are no longer wanted.”

Why Profit Margins are High – David Merkel talking about one of the most oft-repeated bear thesis — that current profit margins, which are at all-time historical highs, are unsustainable. As David puts it, “Now will profit margins mean-revert? Certainly, but the proper question is when will it happen?  Profit margins will mean revert when labor begins to be scarce again.  Given the changes in the world, that could be a long time.” A must-read for every investor, bull or bear.

FHFA Inspector General End Runs DoJ, Joins Forces With New York Attorney General Schneiderman – Are we finally going to start seeing some prosecutions? The only way to bring confidence back into the system is to prosecute crime, including the CEOs of the TBTF banks who lied about their health of their balance sheets. Lied?  So many laws broken, so little time left in the statute-of-limitations to prosecute those crimes.

Apple Plots TV Assault – Tens of billions of potential new revenue for the TV hardware, not to mention the upside of having yet another building block in the Apple eco-system.  Stick with Apple.

And finally — here’s a flashback to a debate between the Republican and Democrat Presidential nominees from 35 years ago.  The first presidential debate they’d had in 16 years and the first one in which a sitting president participated. A lot’s changed since then. But a lot hasn’t changed.

Jimmy Carter – Gerald Ford Debate Day 1 Part 1 (1976)