Archive for the 'Stocks' Category

App’s I like

I haven’t posted a review of iPhone/iPad app’s in a long time, but here are two App’s that I have been using the past couple of months that I am very pleased with and highly recommend:

Dark Sky – Weather

I really like the design of this app. When I first read about that app my initial reaction was, “Well what can it provide that other weather app’s do not?”. However, i found that it really does display weather information in a very unique format that gives you a complete picture of the weather in your area very quickly.. The maps are great and are especially cool when displayed on a tablet

Dark Sky costs a $3.99, but I think it well worth it.

StocksTracker – Financial 

The second app that has become a new favorite of mine is StocksTracker.  Yes, there are hundreds of stock app’s out there, but I think this app is exceptionally well designed and the interface is very well organized.
The bacic app is free, but if you want the full version with all the bell and whistles it costs $15.00. I used the free version at first  and I liked it so much that bought the full version after two  weeks. I think the charts are very good.
It is a great app for the iPhone, but even better on the iPad.

Backgammon and Risk Management

I will always be grateful to my late father for teaching me how to play backgammon at a very age. The game has provided me a lifetime of enjoyment. In recent years I’ve developed a new appreciation for the game because I have downloaded several backgammon app’s for my iPhone and I play on almost on a daily basis.

I’ve read a variety of articles about Backgammon recently and came across this description of the game by former champion player Tim Holland:

“Backgammon combines the features of every popular game we’ve known for decades. It blends the pure luck of craps and roulette, a lot of tactical skill, and a large element of personal judgment. The social aspect of it is beautiful — you don’t need to go to a club or set up a foursome. You can compete en famille, alone against your wife, or with an almost unlimited number of children or friends.

“Then, it’s so clean and candid; cheating is just about impossible; no one is hiding any cards; there’s no bluff, as in poker. It’s also very democratic and good for the ego because, with occasional luck, beginners can beat the most advanced players. And, of course, it’s the most pacific game I know of; it’s totally devoid of any element of human aggression. You’re never angry at your opponent, as in rummy, or at your partner, as in bridge. Whatever anger you feel is directed at the dice, at some abstraction of Lady Luck.”

Tim Holland, The New Yorker, 1974

I agree with Holland about the social aspect of the game and that aspect is obviously not present when you play against a computer, but I still find playing against my iPhone quite a bit of fun.

I would recommend the game to anyone, but particularly those who have jobs that require some degree of risk management, especially stock and commodity traders. There are a variety of games that could help traders hone their skills risk skills and become more adept at developing strategy. Chess comes mind. As a trader you always want to be thinking a few moves ahead. Backgammon is the same way, except it adds more of an element of chance because moves are dictated by rolls of the dice. In order to become good at the game you really have to learn how to master the odds and play the percentages. There may be some scenarios where you make all the right moves, yet you still lose simply because your opponent was beneficiary of rolls that gave him a great advantage, but if you are disciplined and play the odds correctly you are going to win more often than not. It is the same way trading and investing.

To be continued…..













Has Apple peaked?

There seems to be quite a bit of alarm about Apple within certain circles on Wall St. and elsewhere in the investment world because the stock (AAPL) is in the midst of significant correction for the first time in 4 years. Some people seem be questioning if the stock has peaked and others, with an even more pessimistic view, may be wondering if Apple has peaked as a company, never to be more dominant than it has been in the last few years. We won’t know the answers to those questions for some time, perhaps even a few years, but I don’t think the stock has peaked and I don’t think the company has peaked either.

As you can see from the chart below, AAPL has had quite a run from 2009 to 2012, when it soared from roughly 100 to 700, powered primarily by the success of the iPhone and the iPad.

Apple Monthly Chart

Apple Monthly Chart

How low will AAPL go? Well, I think it could go to the 375 to 425 range. After stocks and commodities have made extended moves in one direction they more often than not make what technical analysts call a correction and that is usually a price retracement (a move in the opposite direction) of 40 to 60 percent of the original move. It never ceases to amaze me that some people, even some seasoned professional investors, seem to expect stocks like Apple to go up and up for ever, without experiencing any real correction. What is happening to the stock now is natural. All stocks and commodities lose momentum at some point.

How long will AAPL stay down? If I knew that…well, you know how the rest goes. I don’t know exactly, but it may be a long time, even a few years before AAPL exceeds the highs in made earlier this year. However, the stock could make big moves both up and down before it stabilizes. Until the intermediate term technicals turn positive I don’t think it would be a very good idea to go long. So, I would be looking for a positive cross on the weekly MACD and the stochastics as a sign that stock ready to turn back up in a meaningful way.

AAPL Weekly chart Dec 12

I think a major rally that does bring the stock to new highs will require a the introduction a spectacular new product that will serve as the next major catalyst for an upward movement in the stock price. That product might be the long rumored Apple TV or something else that is secret and we know little or nothing about (maybe an Apple version of Google Glass) . I think Apple remains one of the most innovative companies in the world and is very capable of delivering products that will be dominant and disruptive in the market place. CEO Tim Cook is not the dynamic leader that Steve Jobs was, but I do think Cook is a very able leader and that he recognizes that Apple must continue to innovate in order to maintain a preeminent position in technology and entertainment.

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George M. Fattell.

The gmf journal is a general subject blog that reflects my thoughts and opinions on a variety of topics that are of interest to me. Current home base is Easton, Pennsylvania, USA. Retweets do not equal an endorsement.

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