The Week Ahead: Money rates, GDP and much more

The Federal Open Market Committee meets for two days, culminating in an announcement on interest rates on Wednesday at 2  p.m. New York time.

Their decision precedes public release of the first estimate of gross domestic product for the 2nd quarter, on Friday at 8:30 a.m.

Other major economic reports: Durable goods orders and international trade in goods, both on Thursday at 8:30 a.m., and two real estate reports: existing home sales on Monday and new home sales on Wednesday, each at 10 a.m.

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HAL Analysis

Halliburton Co. (HAL)

HAL publishes earnings on Monday after the closing bell.

I shall use options that trade for the last time 14 days later, on Aug. 4.

Implied volatility stands at 30%, which is 1.89 times the VIX, a measure of the volatility of the S&P 500 index.

HAL’s IV stands in the 46th percentile of its annual range and the 63rd percentile of its most recent broad movement.

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MSFT Analysis

Microsoft Corp. (MSFT)

Update 7/21/2017: MSFT shares rose and then declined after earnings were published, and I exited a 58.9% of maximum potential profit.

Shares rose by a net 1.6% over the four days I held the position, or a +144% annual rate. The options position produced a +58.9% yield on debit for a +5,371% annual rate.


MSFT publishes earnings on Thursday after the closing bell.

I shall use options that trade for the last time eight days later, on July 28.

Implied volatility stands at 24%, which is 2.5 times the VIX, a measure of the volatility of the S&P 500 index.

MSFT’s IV stands in the 74th percentile of its annual range and the 89th percentile of its most recent broad movement.

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QCOM Analysis

QUALCOMM Inc. (QCOM)

QCOM publishes earnings on Wednesday after the closing bell.

I shall use options that trade for the last time nine days later, on July 28.

Implied volatility stands at 29%, which is 2.9 times the VIX, a measure of the volatility of the S&P 500 index.

QCOM’s IV stands in the 63rd percentile of its annual range and the 77th percentile of its most recent broad movement.

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URI Analysis

United Rentals Inc. (URI)

Update 7/20/2017: URI gapped upward after earnings were published. I exited at 25.0% of maximum potential profit.

Shares rose by 4.2% over three days, or a +507.1% annual rate. The options position produced a 33.3% yield on debit for a +4,049% annual rate.


URI publishes earnings on Wednesday after the closing bell.

I shall use options that trade for the last time nine days later, on July 28.

Implied volatility stands at 44%, which is 4.5 times the VIX, a measure of the volatility of the S&P 500 index.

URI’s IV stands in the 65th percentile of its annual range and the peak of its most recent broad movement.

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