(Just a pretty picture, trading platforms don’t really look like this)
Dear Spread Betting Diary
23 September 2017: Quote of the Day“I started to learn Italian in March, but it is easy. I am very intelligent.” – Jose Mourinho
21 September 2017: The Fed Gives EUR/USD A BoostWhy did EUR/USD sell off if the markets expected: According to Michael Hewson, Chief Market Analyst, CMC Markets, the issue surrounded inflation and growth.
Growth in either area would push the FOMC to raise rates and naturally that would strengthen the dollar.
The FOMC suggested three potential rate rises in 2018 despite downgrading their inflation forecasts from 1.7% to 1.5% for 2017 and from 2% to 1.9% for 2018.
The FOMC surprised by revising 2017 growth forecasts up from 2.1% to 2.2%. This is a little strange given recent weakness retail sales data and the economic damage caused by hurricanes Harvey and Irma.
Yes, the US labour market is in good shape but there’s scant evidence of inflation.
Sharp EUR/USD Sell-OffDuring last night’s sell-off I closed my EUR/USD position for an irritatingly small loss.
Hit the Close Button!
Has EUR/USD Up-Channel Support Held Up?The market has bounced off the up-channel support we’ve been discussing on SpreadBetMagazine.
EUR/USD might be worth another trade, see EUR/USD spread betting update.
Hold the line! Stay with me!
21 September 2017: Move Along, There’s Nothing to See.
Elections During the Oktoberfest?
This Could Be A Snoozefest…It looks like Angela Merkel has run the kind of effortless election campaign that Theresa May can only dream of.
We’ve had a quick look at how the spread betting brokers are treating their markets.
Unlike recent UK and US elections, it’s pretty much a case of business as usual.
For more, see German Elections Illicit No Big Trading Warnings… So Far.
Why No Big Fuss?Angela Merkel is priced at 1.02 on Betfair to be the next German Chancellor… that suggests a 98% chance of her retaining her job.
The exit polls are due at 5pm UK time on Sunday, and as usual IG, are offering trading on Sunday stock markets.
20 September 2017: Time for the Federal Reserve’s View on Interest RatesIt’s a big day for a lot of spread betting markets, the Fed is due to give its position on the next rate rise.
Outside of the monthly non-farm payrolls releases, FOMC rate announcements normally make for the busiest day for the spread betting firms.
Ahead of the meeting, I’m looking to close my USDJPY spread bet.
I only have one other open trade at the moment, i.e. the EUR/USD spread bet but we have wide Stops and Limits on that so I’m less concerned about a spike or gap.
Michael Hewson, Chief Market Analyst, at CMC Markets as taken a more in-depth look at today’s meeting:
The bond markets are making it 50/50 that the Fed will hike rates in December. This seems optimistic given the uncertainty around the damage caused by recent hurricanes. Today’s meeting may well shift those odds but it is unlikely to provide the final word.Hewson also gives a little more insight:
“There doesn’t appear to be in any doubt that the FOMC looks set to announce the paring down of its $4.5trn balance sheet.
“Likewise, inflation still remains weak, and the damage from hurricanes Harvey and Irma continues to be assessed, so there’s little doubt that the Fed will keep interest rates unchanged.
The Big Question“The big question is on the timing of the next rate rise.
“There is a school of thought that suggests the market is under-pricing the prospect of a hike in December and it is unlikely that the Fed will want to take the prospect of a December hike off the table.
“However, a range of factors that could delay the this and also see fewer projected increases for 2018.
“We should expect to hear the Fed’s view on the impact of the hurricanes and that could well prompt some caution over the direction of the economic data.
“Particular attention will be given to inflation forecasts albeit with inflation looking lethargic.
“Looking at GDP, recent data covering retail sales and industrial production have been weaker than expected.
“A cautious economic outlook is likely to push back the potential December rate rise.
“If the December rate rise remains in play but undecided by the time of the December meeting itself then it will become even less likely.
“A number of the Federal Reserve‘s members are due to leave before the December decision, including vice-Chairman Stanley Fischer.
“With five new members set to be appointed to the Fed, policy is likely to be cloudy for some time.”
20 September 2017: Another Bite Out of BitcoinYesterday, Chinese authorities told Bitcoin exchanges in Beijing and Shanghai to close their operations by… err… end of play… 20 September… that’s today.
The news was semi-expected but the speed of the closure is still a bit of a surprise.
Less surprising was the fact that Bitcoin had a down day and this is just another reason to not trade the “currency”, read more.
19 September 2017: Abe Considers Snap Election… Sayōnara YenIncreasing tensions with North Korea and Prime Minister Abe considering a snap election are not helping the yen.
USD/JPY has passed the 200-day moving average at ¥111.50 (line shown in green below).
I’ve taken a small short-term speculative buy. The longer-term view is also interesting. For more read new USD/JPY spread bet.
USD/JPY with 200 Day Moving Average
19 September 2017: EUR/USD Struggling at $1.2000EUR/USD hasn’t been able to overcome $1.2000 since it hit the level on 29 August.
I’m still keeping my buy trade open though.
See EUR/USD spread betting update.
Struggling at $1.2000
18 September 2017: Mixed Messages with Hedgefund TradesThere are some of the usual inconstancies in the Commitments of Traders reports when it comes to the stock market indices.
Comparing the Long:Short ratios of the last three weekly reports: That’s quite a big difference for not dissimilar markets.
The Forex Data is Less ConflictingIn the forex markets, the funds have been holding similar positions for the last 3 weeks e.g. If you’re spread betting on GBPUSD or EURGBP then note that the last COT report was for the week to Tuesday 12 September and that was before the more hawkish Bank of England meeting on Thursday 14 September.
(The new report only comes out late on Fridays – so there is a delay but the COT reports still give some useful data.)
Commitments of Traders Long:Short Ratios
|COT – Indices||29 Aug 2017||5 Sep 2017||12 Sep 2017|
|Dow Jones Index||7.6:1||6.9:1||8.1:1|
|S&P 500 Index||1:2.3||1:2.2||1:2.8|
|Nikkei 225 Index||3.2:1||3.8:1||3.7:1|
|COT – Forex||29 Aug 2017||5 Sep 2017||12 Sep 2017|
|New Zealand Dollar||2.8:1||2.2:1||2:1|
|US Dollar Index||1:1.1||1:1.1||1:1.1|
|COT – Commodities||29 Aug 2017||5 Sep 2017||12 Sep 2017|
|Copper Grade #1||1.4:1||1.4:1||1.4:1|
|Crude Oil (US Light Sweet)||2.2:1||2.3:1||2.3:1|
15 September 2017: Typical, You Write a Little Article About Range Trading…and the market breaks out before you can test the theory.
The FTSE 100 has well and truly cleared the range we discussed.
At least it cleared the range so quickly that we didn’t have time to buy.
Also in the markets:
14 September 2017: EUR/USD Was Too TemptingThe main news today is about the rise of GBP/USD but I’ve had a small buy of EUR/USD which is near the up-channel support, i.e. the trend that’s been in play for most of 2017.
Here’s the set-up for my EUR/USD spread bet.
14 September 2017: Fresh Warnings on Why You Shouldn’t Spread Bet on Bitcoin…or any other cryptocurrencies.
It’s been a poor fortnight for Bitcoin… it has fallen 24.4% in just 11 days.
As well as our tweets, which have warned about BTC and other cryptocurrencies, on 4 September we wrote a lengthy article on why you shouldn’t spread bet on Bitcoin.
Jamie Dimon, the JPMorgan CEO, has now also come out and said Bitcoin is a fraud. His comments helped knock 10% off Bitcoin in a single day.
It doesn’t matter if you respect Dimon’s opinion or not. The fact he can so easily move a market shows how fragile and dangerous it is for investors.
For more, also see Don’t Say We Didn’t Warn You.
That sound you can hear… it’s the big f*** off alarm bell.
13 September 2017: GBP/USD Wheezes to 1 Year HighWell that was hard work. GBP/USD seems to have had an asthmatic rise to $1.33.
No Trade Yet But…To me the rise has been weak and largely based on dollar-weakness. That means this is not a trend I want to join yet.
A quick breach of $1.35 could make things more interesting.
The EUR/USD chart is still the more interesting chart.
EUR/USD seems to be in a stronger trend due a combination of dollar-weakness and euro-strength.
It will be tempting to buy the market if the price comes close to the up-channel support line.
13 September 2017: Extreme Apple BobbingWe did warn you it was going to be a volatile session for Apple.
Looking at the 10 minute chart below you can see the stock easily moving 100 points in just 10 minutes.
And it wasn’t all in one direction. You can also see a 400pt during one 60 minute period.
These kinds of moves sound great but are very difficult to trade unless you have very deep pockets or are willing to gamble with lots of trades and tight stops…. easier said than done.
I sure some traders made money but many will have gotten hurt… hopefully this serves as another reminder of why you need to be very wary of US tech stocks.
Why Did The Share Price Fall?The product launch went as expected with the new iPhone 8, iPhone X and Apple Watch that doesn’t require an iPhone… and Apple still not discussing sales numbers of the watch.
The hefty $999 price tag for a new IPhone hasn’t had as much bad press as one might expect.
The share price fall seemed to coincide with the news that production delays mean consumers may not be able to shell out for a new phone until November.
Aftershocks Expected…There could be more aftershocks for the Apple share price today. You have been warned.
13 September 2017: FCA Bearish on Initial Coin OfferingsThe UK regulator has issued a rather stark statement on ICOs saying:
ICOs are very high-risk, speculative investments.Given the lack of oversight with ICOs, the FCA could have used even stronger language and still been correct.
You should be conscious of the risks involved… and prepared to lose your entire stake.
12 September 2017: Trump Has No Connections with Russia…There are many things that seem to connect Trump with Russia… something that the President adamantly denies…
In case you missed it here’s a 5 minute look at just one of the alleged ties… a tie which Donald Trump’s lawyer recently confirmed to Congress.
You know… the letter of intent The Donald signed to build a tower in Moscow…. You know the small matter of potentially creating the world’s tallest building…
And there’s more… enjoy 5 minutes of Trevor Noah:
12 September 2017: Take Care with New iPhone LaunchWith the new iPhone launch, we could be looking at a couple of big trading sessions for Apple Inc.
This stock can easily move +500pts in a session.
Even with small stakes that kind of move should make you think again (and again and again) before trading.
See – take care when spread betting on Apple.
12 September 2017: FTSE 100 Presents an OpportunityYesterday:
12 September 2017: Gold Gives 464pt Profit!Gold perfectly broke out of the triangle pattern we discussed and hit our Limit Order (Take Profit order) at $1,335.
Do not be fooled. Trading is rarely this easy.
464pt trades are as rare as hen’s teeth and we did set ourselves a potential 236pt downside.
For more on this see textbook gold spread bet.
11 September 2017: Normal Service Resuming?The VIX closed last week at 12.1 so neither exciting nor deadly dull either. Unlike the weather, the summer’s trading wasn’t a complete washout.
With the kids back at school we should also get back to normal September trading levels in no time.
Hopefully that means fewer random moves on light volumes.
Looking ahead, the AA PLC chart is showing an interesting pattern but no trade yet.
The big one though is this week’s new iPhone 8 / iPhone X launch and how that will impact the Apple share price.
11 September 2017: IG No Longer Offer Discounted RolloversIG are no longer offering discounted rollovers on futures markets.
I.e. if you roll a futures trade over from one month (or quarter) to the next then you pay the full price of closing the trade to the mid-point (half the spread) and the full price of opening the new trade (whole spread).
With most platforms, you simply pay half the spread of the market to rollover a futures trade.
OK, this doesn’t feel like great news but at the same time this probably impacts less than 0.1% of all trades… or perhaps even less than 0.01%…
It’s not a big issue for most of us.
And if you are constantly holding these longer-term trades then think about using a different vehicle e.g. an ETF might be better suited to your needs than a spread bet.
11 September 2017: China Planning to Shut Bitcoin ExchangesMore downward pressure and extreme volatility expected for BTC.
There’s a quick update here: Bitcoin spread betting news.
4 September 2017: Warning on Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin & Ethereum etc.
Warning… Warning… Warning…
We can be pretty flippant on Spread Bet Magazine but when it comes to cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin etc. things tend to get a lot more serious.
The problem with financial spread betting and/or trading CFDs on cryptocurrencies is that you are combining extremely volatile markets with high risk trading products.
We’ve added a full guide and example of how quickly you’ll be in trouble in our new Bitcoin and cryptocurrency spread betting guide.
30 August 2017: Royal Mail Sent from the FTSE 100The chart for the Royal Mail shares is ugly and dropping out of the FTSE 100 isn’t good news.
Having said that, I don’t fancy spread betting on Royal Mail right now.
Return to Sender
24 August 2017: Worth a Cheeky PuntWhen it comes to the financial markets, Spread Bet Mag is not licenced or authorised to give tips. And that may be wise.
Nevertheless, when it comes to sports, we’re not experts here either, but we can and do give the occasional tip.
22 August 2017: ‘Better’ Monthly RebatesFinancial Spreads have adjusted their rebates downwards so that they are easier to get.
Before the change you had to trade £500 in spread costs (spread x stake) to get a 5% rebate, i.e. £25 back. So far so standard.
You can now trade £250 in spread costs and get a 10% rebate, i.e. £25 back.
This should open up the rebate to a few more people.
You can still get a 20% rebate but need to trade £4,000 in a month and that’s a lot of trading (and will apply to very few readers).
As always with rebates, concentrate on your trading…. a rebate is just a brucey bonus.
Also see where to get a trading rebate.
21 August 2017: Hedge Funds Shorting the S&P 500Below, we’ve taken a quick look at how the weekly Commitment of Traders (COT) report has changed.
As usual we concentrate on the change in the Long:Short ratio by “Non-Commercial” companies – as reported by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
I.e. whether the big speculators like hedge funds getting increasingly long or short of a market.
Large US Stock Markets
Large Forex Positions
Note – with COT reports, the forex reports always measures a currency vs the US dollar (be careful with misreading COT reports and markets like USD/JPY).
Large Commodities Positions
18 August 2017: New Donald Trump CartoonsIt’s Friday and we’ve created a page of our favourite Donald Trump cartoons, images and memes.
If we’ve missed any good ones, please let us know.
18 August 2017: Caution Needed But Volatility Only Back to 2014-2016 LevelsJust in case you didn’t get the message from all the other market commentary about increased volatility, take a look at the VIX charts below.
The general level of volatility is increasing.
The high for 2017 was this time last week on 11 August. We have also seen a couple of other volatile days over the past week.
However, the weekly chart below puts things to perspective. The highs we’ve seen over the last week were pretty typical for much of 2014-2016.
What Does This Mean for Your Spread Betting?Also see live VIX volatility chart.
Daily VIX Chart
Weekly VIX Chart
Volatility Back to 2014-2016 Levels
17 August 2017: Gold Breaks Long-Term Triangle PatternThis is interesting and worth a small trade.
Gold has broken the long-term triangle pattern that we’ve been discussing.
There could a $60 (600pt upside), see gold spread bet update.
Let’s Take a Break
17 August 2017: Twitter is Censoring Images, Memes and Tweets About TrumpThis afternoon @spreadbetmag put this meme on Twitter… but Twitter pulled it…
OK, he may not have said this out loud but banning a Trump meme? Deleting a little satire? Bizarre.
Some of my best friends…
OK, OK, OK. I made the meme above.
Fine. But then Twitter deleted by my next tweet which is just the latest cover of The Economist.
The tweet was just this and picture of the cover:
@realDonaldTrump please make sure you read the latest copy of the @TheEconomist – the cover should give you a clue what it’s about. #potus
Judging by this, they are going to be deleting a lot of tweets! (just not Donald’s).
Shame about Twitter deleting it. It’s a good cover, I look forward to reading it.
17 Aug 2017: Snap Spread Bets End on a WhimperAs expected, Snap gapped lower over the weekend but the speed of the rebound was very quick. I closed my last trade for a miserly profit.
The Snap chart has also broken my very wide channel.
Time to exit.
For more, see Snap inc trading update.
15 Aug 2017: The Foolish YankeesThe North Korea vs USA spat seems to be dying down a little.
It sounds like the adults (in this case China and hopefully General Kelly) have managed to rein in toddlers Jong-un and Trump.
Helping the markets is a new statement from North Korean state media. According to the BBC:
Although prepared for “the enveloping fire at Guam”, the North said it would watch what “the foolish Yankees” do before taking a decision.
The Most Foolish YankeeLater on today, in the US, we get the July retail sales data which could be interesting.
After April, May and June saw negative readings, another negative reading, or even just a lacklustre figure, could put a little more pressure on the White House.
The chief fool will be wanting to talk about his $1 trillion infrastructure plan.
Not surprisingly, the current plan is very light on detail and many Republican don’t like the idea of all that government spending.
Any positive messaging about infrastructure spending could be drowned out by the Charlottesville debacle.
Trump made such a mess of the condemning the KKK that when he finally did… it was too late for many people.
Merck’s Ken Frazier, Intel’s Brian Krzanich and Under Armour’s Kevin Plank have all left the President’s “American Manufacturing Council”. Hopefully he’s lost a few more supporter too.
Seriously… if you can’t even condemn the KKK what can you do?
71 years old and still fucking useless.
Whose wizard idea was it to put this idiot in charge?
14 August 2017: Snap’s Decline Has Been Pretty Textbook…but… I’ll also be exiting the Snap market soon.
We’ve had some nice profits but the unknowns are increasing.
There’s an update on my Snap spread bet here.
As many predicted, Snap saw a nasty gap lower on poor Q2 data.
14 Aug 2017: Trump Confirms He’s Still a DickDonald Trump has condemned “hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides” at white supremacy rally in Charlottesville. Eh?
Credit: The Whitest House by Ben Jennings, The Guardian
14 August 2017: Cut Your Trading Costs with a Rebate
Financial Spreads have started running a monthly rebate called “Trader Rebate”.
It looks like one of the more generous rebates on offer and, looking through the terms and conditions, there are no nasty withdrawal clauses.
Rebates are not the be-all and end-all but they can be useful for large or frequent traders.
InterTrader also run a monthly rebate.
We’ve added a new guide, see rebate guide for spread betting, forex and CFDs
And Don’t Forget…
Also see Donald Trump videos.
For more, please see Dear Spread Betting Diary.
What’s New on SpreadBetMagazine?We have worked for the spread betting companies in the past. We spread bet. We trade CFDs. We have seen much of what goes on, both good and bad.
Hopefully we can cover some industry gossip too (even when it irritates our advertisers).
Our aim with Spread Bets Magazine is to:
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