Margin Trading With Options Explained - Warrior Trading
I spent the last 6 weeks playing all 13 main series Pokémon games. Here's my experiences
Some of you may remember me. Most of you probably don't. I made a post about it six weeks ago, which you can find here, about how I was gonna play 13 of the main series Pokémon games within six weeks, which I did. I was gonna make weekly updates, but they got automatically removed for some reason, so that's fun So what I'm gonna do now is the biggest part of this whole 'project.' I'm gonna summarize exactly 306 hours and 35 minutes of gameplay within one reddit post. And if you're wondering how I know the exact times, I made a Google Sheet to document my journey, which you can see here, if you want all the boring numbers. If you don't want my summary of every single game, just scroll down to the bottom, where I'll share my thoughts about the whole ordeal. So let's get started on this, shall we?
Honestly, I enjoyed Blue a lot more than I thought I would, even though the flaws of Gen 1 were hard to ignore. And may I say, thank god for LP compilers and podcasts, because 95% of the time I was playing Blue and Crystal, I was listening to something else. There's only so much beep-boop music one man can take. Overall, it was a great start to this journey. Some miscellaneous notes I took while playing:
Wrap is terrible and can go die in a fire
Damn some of the old sprites were terrible
I used a Snorlax in the latter part of the game, which I nicknamed Monokuma. But I should've named it Critikuma, because he was ALWAYS hit by critical hits. I know that crits are more common in Gen 1, but I cannot stress enough how frequent he was slammed down to half health immediately. It was so bad I just boxed him partway through the Elite Four
I captured all 4 legendaries in this game within the span of a few hours. After that, I considered the game 'completed.' (more details on what I consider 'completed' later)
The team I used: Venusaur, Golem, Alakazam, Ninetales, Vaporeon, Snorlax
Crystal was where the... difficulties of this challenge started coming up. I actually started Crystal on July 6th, just after capturing Mewtwo, and I played up to beating Bugsy. Unfortunately, I stayed up way too late, and woke up with a massive headache. So I spent most of the next day unwinding and mentally preparing myself for what's coming up. The rest of the game wasn't too difficult... until the 10th. I wanted to stay on a '1 game per 3 days' schedule, and this was the last day for Crystal, and I was just started on the Pokemon League. I was a little underleveled, so I spent the first half of my day repeatedly grinding up farther and farther up until I beat Lance on my 5th or 6th attempt. So I had to speed through all the Kanto section to stay on track. Which I did, to my amazement. I beat all the Kanto gyms super fast, and managed to get to Red... and immediately got slamjammed by his Pikachu So this lead me to a question: 'when can I stop playing a game?' So I made this rule: Once I've beaten the Champion and the credits roll, I'm free to move on to the next game as I please. This is the hard rule I'm gonna adhere to. I don't want this to become stressful or a job, so I'm making this rule for my own sanity That all out of the way, here's a few notes I took while playing:
I think this game made me appreciate color again. You don't realize how much you miss color until you spend 3 days only looking at a monochrome screen
I find it so strange that Jasmine's Steelix is the same level as the boss of the radio tower, but you have to beat Jasmine in order for Team Rocket to attack
One of my team members was a Slowpoke/Slowking that was so ugly, anything with Self-Destruct or Explosion immediately went off. Fortunately my Gengar usually stepped in to block in, but goddamn it was uncanny how often it happened
Using Forretress before the invention of Gyro Ball was a mistake. He was always the least useful of my team, and I straight-up boxed him during the Elite Four and Kanto
The team I used: Typhlosion, Gengar, Slowking, Forretress (aka the mistake), Umbreon, Dragonair
If I had to create a line graph detailing my enjoyment of Emerald, it would be a line steadily going up... until Flannery, then just a slow painful crawl down to the end. I can't place an exact reason why, but this was the only game I played that I've actively disliked playing through. If I had to hazard a guess, I'd say it's because the RNG of Pokemon finally broke me. If there's one lesson I took out of this, it's that you can NEVER chance it on Sleep/Paralysis/Confusion not working. If you wanna work past them, you just heal. And if you inflict it on an enemy, it just won't work. I know it sounds like I'm exaggerating for comedic effect, but this was way too true for me. And the critical hits in this game were maybe the worst yet, even more so than gen 1, although I realize that might've just been me I ended up using Rayquaza to speed through the Elite Four, because I was just genuinely exhausted of this game, and I did not want to try grinding through it. I'm gonna try to avoid using legendaries, but if I have to, I'm not gonna feel sorry about it That being said, here's some various extra notes:
Whoever decided that Flannery's Torkoal should be level 29 when everything else is 26 or less should be shot. Similarly, fuck Liza and Tate. I have no clue why these kids are the smartest goddamn trainers this side of Orre. Seriously, I spent 30 minutes of my precious time grinding up, and I was still 5 levels lower, and barely survived with my Skarmory. Fuck. Them.
On the other hand, I need to shout out my Skarmory, who was the absolute GOAT of my team. Seriously, I cannot overstate how great she was. I always liked Skarmory, but she has easily been one of my favorite team members so far.
Actually, my entire team was solid this time, although Skarmory ended up outshining them. Even Torkoal was a solid team member (a lot better than the Forretress, anyways)
I debated using Shedinja and Armaldo, but I dropped them. I evolved a Shedinja, but after the first few battles with her ended up unsuccessful, I boxed her for my own sanity. I also revived Anorith, but I boxed him after learning that he evolved at level 40. F in chat for Ninjask/Shedinja and Anorith.
The team I used: Swampert, Gardevoir, Breloom, Torkoal, Skarmory, Rayquaza
This game was a lot easier to play through than Emerald, fortunately, although I don't have a lot more to say. It was pretty fun, but my Blue playthrough might've been more enjoyable due to my choices in team members. I decided against capturing all the legendaries this time around, with one exception. I captured Articuno to replace my Fearow for the Pokemon League, since they were long outclassed by this point, and I couldn't cheese my way through Lance with poison-types this time. Still, my Fearow did better than the useless Forretress, so I still appreciate them. Overall, it felt like my Blue playthrough, except slightly worse. But it was still better than Emerald, so I won't complain That's pretty much all I have to say, so time for some extra points:
I have no clue why they made the L and R buttons bring up a tutorial menu. Maybe it's because I already know all of this, but it feels absolutely unnecessary
I am 90% sure that Magnitude can only be 7-10 when enemies use it, but only 3-7 when you use it. I have no proof to back it up, but that's what it feels like. Similarly, the chances of me switching my Pokemon, only for RoaWhirlwind to immediately drag them back out cannot be a coincidence
Holy shit, my Gyarados was the damn hero of this playthrough. Bulky as hell, hit hard with Surf despite it being a special attack, and when I gave them Secret Power, they paralyzed so often. Ever had a Gyarados that could paralyze? It's fantastic
On the opposite hand, my Dugtrio was good... up until I beat Koga, then they were useless. Even for Blaine, my Gyarados did most of the heavy lifting. They just could not take a hit, so they really underperformed
The team I used: Charizard, Fearow, Gyarados, Vileplume, Dugtrio, Magneton, Articuno
So this is my favorite Pokémon game, so I really tried to be impartial about it and treat it the same as the others... which didn't work, since it was the game I spent the most time on and explored the most in. Whoops! But I'm not ashamed; this was the best region out of everything I played. Honestly, I'm glad to know that my joy for this game wasn't just misplaced nostalgia, and still holds up to today. Although it was really unfortunate that I was having technical issues that I had to devote a lot of time to dealing with, otherwise I could've probably beaten this game in three/three and half days. I'll go into more details in the SoulSilver section. So here's some notes about my experience:
Replaying this game made me realize how great the ground type was in gen 4. Torterra, Gastrodon, and Garchomp, just to name a few
Team Galactic is still my favorite evil teams in the Pokémon franchise, mixing evil campiness and serious threat perfectly in ways the Team Plasma and Team Flare don't. Also their aesthetic is really cool
Did you guys know the Storm Drain only redirected water-type moves instead of absorbing it? I didn't, so imagine my surprise when I bring my Gastrodon into Wake's fight and get whooped
And while we're talking about my team, wow my choices made the Candice fight hard. If it wasn't for my Bronzong, it would've been a lot harder
The team I used: Torterra, Staraptor, Gastrodon, Bronzong, Garchomp, Porygon-Z
If I had to rank my favorite Pokémon games, SoulSilver would be in the top 5, only just below Platinum. So it sucks that my house was suffering internet outages (around the 19th-24th) while I was supposed to be playing this game. And since gen 4 is the slowest of all the games, that DOUBLY sucks. So I had to devote valuable time to fixing that, and ended up not getting to play the Kanto section of this game. That sucks, but since I already went through this with Crystal, so I'm not too fussed. Other than the circumstances, this wasn't too different from Crystal, although my team choices were a lot better Yada, yada, yada, notes:
This was the first game I decided to play as the girl player character this time, because she's the cutest thing in the entire franchise. This is not up for debate
I ended up bringing trading some stuff from Platinum, mainly Houndour and some evolution stones for my Togetic and Exeggcutor. I would've gotten the stones legitimately, but I'm on a time crunch here. I brought Houndour over because it's one of my favorite gen 2 mons, and the only way to get it before Kanto is by trading it in, and it's super easy to grab in Sinnoh, so... fuck it
I ended up keeping Metronome on my Togekiss for way too long, just because it was too much fun. It wasn't until after Clair that I ended up dropping it
Whoever decided that Koga's Muk should spam Minimize, gave it Black Sludge, use Toxic on everything, AND gave him a Full Restore... I hope your children hate you. I'm still upset just remembering it
The team I used: Feraligatr, Ampharos, Togekiss, Houndoom, Exeggcutor, Mamoswine
WHITE & WHITE 2
(I'm combining the two because I don't have a lot to say about them individually) So as a child, I really disliked White, because I was a child who couldn't appreciate how much effort was put into them, and I was upset I couldn't use any of my old favorites. But as an adult, I can really understand the work behind it, or at least behind White 1. Although I still say the lack of options in White 1 is a major downside, since anybody who's not challenging themselves are gonna have some combination of the same 15-ish Pokémon on the story campaign. But while the 2nd game has a better Pokémon choice, the story is also factually worse, so pick your poison. But back to the point, I really enjoyed these games. A lot more than I did when I was younger, anyways So here's my extra notes; two for each game: (White)
I thought Platinum and Soul Silver were rough with encounter rates, but good fucking lord, this game was bad. I could not count how many times I walked 1-2 steps into the grass (not running, walking) and got an encounter, often just after one encounter. I ended up yelling 'I TOOK ONE STEP' so many times
I really, REALLY hate the Reshiram vs Zekrom fight with N. Seriously, it's absolutely stupid. N's dragon has two extra levels, so it's guaranteed to outspeed you. And since the dragon's stats are near-equal, it's gonna do as much damage as you do to it, so there's next to no way you can beat it with just your dragon alone. Ugggghh
When I fought Elesa, she was a massive level spike, which I never got to overcome. But the game got easier, even if the numbers said I should be struggling. Maybe because trainers started to use less Pokémon, but I couldn't place my finger on it
I did a small challenge here: I used a Swoobat on my White 1 team, and a Crobat on my White 2 team, as a pseudo-experiment to see which one was better. Unsurprisingly, the better performer was my favorite Pokémon, Crobat. But Swoobat was still a favorite of mine, and performed a lot better than I thought they would
The team I used for White 1: Serperior, Swoobat, Excadrill, Scolipede, Carracosta, Chandelure The team I used for White 2: Emboar, Azumarill, Crobat, Sigilyph, Sawsbuck, Escavalier
A lot of my friends consider X/Y some of the worst games in the franchise, and while they may have a point, I still enjoy them a lot more than... another title we'll be talking about later. Personally, I think the gameplay is pretty much a straight upgrade from Black/White, although the story... UGH. Easily the worst. Especially Team Flare. I could make an entire post about them, but to simplify: They're a team all about style, yet their admins are way too overdesigned and forgettable to make a point. Instead of the cold uniformity of Team Galactic or the easily understood motives of Team Plasma, they're just a hot mess whose admins are completely forgettable. And Lysandre is just President Rose, but more obviously a villain and somehow more overdramatic I had a loooooot of notes about this game, mostly about Team Flare, but here's what I condensed it down to:
Did you know that you can buy Hyper Potions after getting the second badge? This is when your Pokémon are around level 25. Why the hell would you need a 200 HP heal at this point in the game?
Remember before you could save Xerneas/Yveltal, and you had to fight 4 admins, who collectively had 6 Pokémon? Why not just condense them into one admin, and actually give them a personality?
Ok, I really need to rant about Lysandre's final fight. He uses four Pokémon that're pretty much the same as the ones he uses when you first arrive in his lair, the background is a burning area for some reason, and he's wearing some stupid sci-fi nonsense that does nothing! I sweeped him with my Meowstic, who was five levels higher than his Gyarados
This was the first game I was a higher level than the Champion, and my Meowstic made Diantha trivial by just putting up Light Screen/Reflect and letting the others 1-hit ko 2/3rds of her team, with only her Gardevoir putting up any meaningful resistance. Seriously, this was the easiest game yet, by a large margin
The team I used: Chesnaught, Talonflame, Florges, Meowstic, Barbaracle, Goodra
(So a quick preface, I actually played Ultra Moon before Omega Ruby, since the cartridge I had was corrupted, so I played UM while I waited for my new cart to arrive. Just thought I'd mention it) So Alpha Sapphire was is in the top 5 games for me, alongside Platinum and SoulSilver. Which is why I'm kinda surprised that this is the game I spent the least time on (17 hours, 18 minutes), being one of the two games I spent less than 20 hours on. Which is absolutely strange to me, since I spent at least an hour grabbing useful TMs for the Elite Four and getting Heart Scales to remember moves, so it really should be higher. Whatever, what about the gameplay? Well, it was like Emerald, but the exact opposite, since I actually really enjoyed it. I don't have much else to say except Pelipper, Zangoose, and Cacturne were all surprisingly fun team members. Seriously, Cacturne might be my new favorite grass-type Extra notes, blah blah blah:
Why did they make the lower floor of Granite Cave inaccessible until you got the bike? I had to wait until I got the Mach Bike to go catch my Aron, and I have no idea why they did this. It's not like having one would be game-breaking, but whatever
I decided to catch a Manectric here, since I knew they could be Mega-Evolved in the main story. But they weren't too much stronger when they were Mega'd, so that was a little disappointing. Still, at least they were a strong team member overall
I didn't mention this in the X notes, but lemme clarify: I abused the hell out of the improved Exp Share, since it really helped me cut past any grinding, which is great, since I'm on a timer here
I tried to cheese the Steven fight by teaching my Cacturne Spikes, so imagine my surprise when his Skarmory also uses Spikes of his own. Touché, Mr. Stone
The team I used was: Blaziken, Pelipper, Manectric, Aggron, Zangoose, Cacturne
So I originally promised to play Sun and Ultra Sun in my original post, but some circumstances led me to cut it down to Ultra Moon. More details can be read about it in the Google Sheet, but trust me, I have my reasons. I decided to play the Ultra version because the bonus versions of the games are supposed to be the "definitive version" of the games. Not sure if I agree on that, since there's basically no difference between Sun and Moon and USUM, and what is different is sometimes worse than what it was. This isn't the time or place to review these games, but if you ever want to replay the Alola games, pick up Sun or Moon, and avoid USUM. As for my experience... I dunno, it was ok. I liked my team, had a few challenges, yeah yeah yeah. Look, this is like the 10th or 11th game I played, this whole thing's become routine at this point But at least I got a few notes to add:
I guess we'll slightly critique the story: I really hate the Aether Foundation. They're like Team Flare, but if they had Team Plasma as a side antagonist before they came out of nowhere. I adore Team Skull and how they're really sympathetic, but them Team Aether comes in, and then we're back to the typical Poképlot
And I'm still upset that they turned an eldritch horror story about an alien creature corrupting a mother into insane obsession into the standard evil dragon Poképlot. Also whoever came up with the Ultra Recon Squad should never work on Pokemon again
In the second visit to Aether Paradise, you fight three scientists, each with one Pokémon. Why not just one scientist with three? This bugs me so much, and I don't know why. Also, one of the double battles later had the same Houndoom/Manectric pair as one of the Team Flare admin fights, because thinking up another good pair of Pokémon that look good together costs too much/is too much work
I almost used a Lopunny on my team, but then I relaized I could use a Metagross instead. So I used a Metagross instead. But I am gonna include Lopunny on my team list because they did a lot of work
The team I used: Primarina, Lopunny, Alolan Muk, Ribombee, Alolan Marowak, Lurantis, Metagross
LET'S GO, EEVEE
UUGGHHHH. This is my least favorite game. I insisted on playing it, since it was technically a main series game, and that was a mistake. I forgot how hand-holding this game was. If you don't know what I'm talking about here's my example: In the original games, you could immediately go from Lavender Town to Celadon, and then go into the Rocket base, no problem. Here, you have to go up the tower, see that there's ghosts, and then leave the tower (which to my knowledge, no other dungeon in Pokémon ever does) then go see Jessie and James talk out loud about the ROCKET HIDEOUT in the CELADON GAMES CORNER. Then when you get there, you can get close to them, and they'll talk out loud about the HIDDEN HIDEOUT with the SWITCH BEHIND THE POSTER Also, the gym requirement thing is just dumb. The fact that the game requires you to have a grass/water-type to fight Brock or have a Pokémon at least level 45 before fighting Sabrina is insane, and makes it nearly impossible to lose. And Koga's requirement of catching 50 unique Pokémon is uniquely cruel in a game where there's only 150-ish Pokémon available, especially to people like me who just like to capture a core team and stop catching unique Pokémon Even besides those, the catching mechanic was broken. Seriously, it was terrible. I had to throw the ball at a 90-degree angle to throw the ball at a target just a little off to the side. One time, I tossed the controller upwards to throw the ball, and it was a perfect throw. Uggghh, I don't even wanna talk about my experience, I just want to complain. So whatever, I'm moving on, no notes this time The team I used: Eevee, Victreebel, Mr. Mime, Rhydon, Starmie, Magmar
I'll admit, I enjoyed this game more than I thought I would. Maybe it's just because it WASN'T Let's Go, or because it was so easy to grind up levels with wild area candies. Either way, this was my second-fastest game played, clocking in at exactly 20 hours played. If I devoted myself to it, I could've beaten this in two days. But since I've got nothing much else to talk about, I'd like to discuss the stories of these games. Because I think I've found the perfect metaphor for these "Poképlots." It's like there's a good story somewhere in there, but half of it we're told to stay out of because we're not adults, and the other half of the plot was ripped out of a better story and painstakingly refitted into the Poképlot format. And if you're wondering why I'm talking so much about the stories, it's because that's the only thing meaningfully different about these games at this point Alright, one last set of notes:
I hate Eternatus' design. Like, I understand that it's supposed to be like an unknowable alien creature, but it's so alien and incoherant that it's just a meaningless skeleton. I know it's supposed to be the bow to Zacian and Zamazenta's sword and shield, but it just doesn't work. It looks like something ripped out of a different JRPG. Even its name sounds out of place
Also the Eternamax fight is pointless, it should've just been a cutscene. Zacian and Zamazenta are the only ones who can do meaningful damage, me and Hop are just pointless additions
I think I've discovered the telltale sign for a pokemon antagonist. They show up for no logical reason in the early game, talk some exposition at you without any real interaction, then walk away
The thing that infuriates me most about this game is that for some unholy reason, some goddamn Burger King has some long-lost tapestry about ancient legend. Seriously, imagine going into a Five Guys, and seeing the Venus de Milo on top of some grill. WHAT THE FUCK. HOW ARE WE THE FIRST ONES TO NOTICE THIS???
The team I used: Inteleon, Boltund, Tsareena, Centiskorch, Perrserker, Grimmsnarl
So I ended up completing my challenge, but what was the point of this whole thing? Well, I wanted to try and revive my love for the Pokémon franchise, since the past few games have really burned me out on the series. So, did I accomplish that? Yeah! Despite all the hard times and frustrating moments, this was actually really fun. I feel like I should hate Pokémon now, since I've literally spent the last month and a half doing nothing but playing the games, but no. I came out of this whole challenge with a greater enjoyment of the series and a few new favorite Pokémon. So... mission accomplished! Although I don't think I'm gonna play any Pokémon games until the Sinnoh remakes come out (whenever that happens). I'm not burned out, but I think I need some time away at this point So... that's it. I'm done. It's over. Feels free to reply about how right/wrong I am with my opinions. Thank you for coming to my TED Talk EDIT: I'm glad this blew up, all the discussions I've been having have been super interesting, especially since we're talking about literally any Pokémon game right now. Thanks for making this post so incredible with your replies, guys. I'm happy my experiment was so interesting to read about
Margin Isn't Dangerous & Why I'd Still Use It If I Had Less Than $25,000
Cash vs. Margin
TL;DR- Use Margin if you're trading securities and either above or below 25k. If you know how to size positions, it won't matter if you move $4,000 into a trade or $4,000,000. As long as you sized the position correctly. If you're limited to 3 trades, then take 3 PERFECT trades: https://imgur.com/a/SpPOERQ I see lots of people discussing contrasting ideas although they attempt to justify using both. Here are some things I see said and written frequently from people that doesn't add up for me:
"Use a cash account to avoid PDT" - (Totally fine, in some cases such as certain options traders. Not if you're trading securities.)
"Risk 1% of your account" - (So if your account is at $25,500, I risk ~$255 and if I lose 2R I'm below PDT. Doesn't sound too great to me if I were to lose the first 2 straight trades.)
"Margin is a double-edged sword" - (It's only dangerous if you don't set hard stops or size your positions correctly.)
"Never take on a trade that is worth more than your account" - (I can agree if you were swing trading but in terms of IntraDay trading, this is hindering your ability to grow your account. If you're risking $100 on a trade that costs less than your account value.. then $25 on a trade because of your account value.. then you're adding unneeded variables. Remember: "Consistency.")
If I were to go back to when I was below $25,000 some years ago. I'd still use a margin account while being limited to 3 trades per week. Here's why:
Formulas you have to know: Position size formula = Risk ÷ Stop Size Stop Size Formula = Entry - StopLoss
Stock ABC, Entry = $10.00 StopLoss = $9.90 StopSize = 10¢ Risk = $100 In Live Trading: $100 ÷ $0.10 = 1000 Shares 1,000 shares at $10.00 = $10,000 position
Stock XYZ, Entry = $385 StopLoss = $383.00 StopSize = $2.00 Risk = $100 In Live Trading: $100 ÷ $2.00 = 50 Shares 50 shares at $385 = $19,250 position. *$10,000 CASH account: CANNOT trade Stock XYZ and must wait 3 days for his entire account to settle after trading Stock ABC. If it was a margin account, they'd still be able to take 2 more trades this week. *$10,000 MARGIN account: CAN trade Stock XYZ and can trade both scenarios while still able to trade 1 more time in a 5 day rolling period.
Then the next point made is, "Just won't trade anything above $20".
Ok. great rebuttal, but why? Let's remember this: StopSizes aren't always directly correlated to the price of a stock. YES you're more likely to have a wider StopSize on a higher priced stock and a tighter StopSize on a lower priced stock. But remember this: 1¢ of slippage on 1,000 shares is 10% of his risk ($10)... It will be even more slippage if his stop loss market order is hit. Even a Sell-StopLimit order will have slippage within the amount you allow for when you enter a position. Stock XYZ would have to be slipped 20¢ just to equate the amount of slippage on Stock ABC.Highly liquid and available stocks such as AAPL, AMD, NVDA etc don't have 20¢ spreads. Not even 10¢. Rarely 5¢. Most of the time. Just a couple cents. Of course there could be more right out of the open but the spread in my years of experience is tightened within 2 minutes of the open. Yes, these small amounts in pennies do hold lots of merit if you're looking at having any longevity in this business, it WILL add up over the years.
Both trades have the same risk [in perfect world theory].
If both stop market orders were hit (StopLoss). Both traders would exit with a $100 loss on each. Although 1 trade required $10,000 in capital and the other trade required $19,250 in capital. Use margin. If I had to go back to when I had less than $25,000 in my account, I'd still do it the same way I did it with margin. I highly suggest using margin even if you’re limited to 3 trades per week. I get asked all the time when I began trading. If you watched my last video, I showed my first ever deposit with Scottrade (Old brokerage that was bought out by TDA a few years ago) in 2015 although I don't consider that's when I started trading because I didn't treat it the way I do today. I really consider myself starting as a trader in 2017 when I: •Wrote a business plan •Understood statistics •How to research. All this being said, slowly over time I noticed that I am taking less and less trades and increasing my risk size. Why? EV: Expected Value. - Margin has zero negative effect if you're sizing your positions the same every time. Margin allows you to take on more expensive positions that are showing your edge. Bonus: Being limited to 3 trades a week isn't fun, I remember that feeling from years ago. Just remember to take 3 perfect trades a week. Sometimes "Perfect Trades" don't work out in your favor while some subpar situations hit target. Some weeks you might take your 3 "Perfect Trades" by Tuesday. Some weeks you might take only 1 "perfect trade". If you follow my watchlists on Twitter (Same handle as my Reddit), I keep my Day Trading Buying Power transparent. Not always is it growing perfectly linear. And not always am I posting every single day because sometimes, my edge isn't there. Just because the market is open doesn't mean you HAVE to trade. My watchlists aren't littered with 15+ tickers. Rarely do they have more than 7. That may work for other traders, but for me, I demand quality. It's either there or it isn't. No reason to force a trade. I'd rather focus heavily on a few tickers rather than spread myself thin across multiple. Trading isn't supposed to be exhilarating or an adrenaline rush. It can be boring. I said that in the post I wrote back in April. Also if you make money, even if its just $20 in a month. Take that money out and buy something. Shrine it. Cherish it. You ripped that money out of WallStreet. Be proud of it. It takes a lot of courage to do this business. Realize that the P/L is real money. Sometimes even just buying a tank of gas or a book will help you realize that. Spend it from time to time. Get something out of your trading account. You may or not be trading for long, get something that is tangible to always remember the experience in case you don't last. Make it your trophy. That's all I've got for right now. Maybe I'll make another post or 2 before the year ends. I hit my 1 year full-time mark in September. Best wishes! -CJT2013
$PSTG: PURE STORAGE for them, PURE TENDIES for you
This is actually my first DD I've ever posted so fuck you and forgive me if this doesn't work out for you.I've been looking at $PSTG for a while now and if my buying power didn't get so fucked from my decision to buy 8/7 UBER puts, I would have been already all over this play. What had got me looking into Pure Storage was an unusual options activity alert. I've looked into this company before but didn't entirely understand what they do. Now after looking at them again, I'm still not exactly sure wtf they do....BUT I've gotten a better clue. Basically what I got from my research is that these guys fuck with "all-FLASH data storage solutions (enabling cloud solutions and other low-latency applications where tape/disk storage does not meet the needs)."......and ultimately what this all means to me is that these are the motherfuckers making those stupid fast laser money printers with the rocket ships attached. And that's something I'm interested in. Now, here is the DailyDick you all degenerates have all been fiending for: Fundamentally: PureStorage remains one of the few hardware companies in tech that is consistently growing double motherfucking digits, yet remains constantly cucked and neglected by investors (trading at 1.9x EV/Sales). https://preview.redd.it/ek7ugjsewnf51.png?width=1118&format=png&auto=webp&s=f9c7e72c95e450a105e44223937422d896eeeb21 The 36 Months beta value for PSTG stock is at 1.62. 74% Buy Rating on RH. PSTG has a short float of 7.28% and public float of 243.36M with average trading volume of 3.16M shares. This was trading at around $18 on Wednesday 8/5 when I started writing this and as of right now, it's about $17.33 💸 The company has a market capitalization of ~$4.6 billion. In the last quarter, PSTG reported a ballin'-ass profit of $256.82 million. Pure Storage also saw revenues increase to $367.12 million. IMO, they should rename themselves PURE PROFIT. As of 04-2020, they got the cash monies flowing at $11.32 million . The company’s EBITDA came in at -$62.81 million which compares very fucking well among its dinosaur ass peers like HPE, Dell, IBM and NetApp. Pure Storage keeps taking market share from them old farts while growing the chad-like revenue #s of 33% in F2019, 21% in F2020, and 12% in F1Q21. Chart of their financial growth since IPO in 2015: https://preview.redd.it/gwlmy82v4nf51.png?width=640&format=png&auto=webp&s=b6508cd5f641da4086b70d8b8007da034e982fd7 At the end of last quarter, Pure Storage had cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities of $1.274B, compared with $1.299B as of Feb 2, 2020. The total Debt to Equity ratio for PSTG is recording at 0.64 and as of 8/6, Long term Debt to Equity ratio is at 0.64.Earning highlights from last quarter:
Revenue $367.1 million, up 12% year-over-year
Subscription Services revenue $120.2 million, up 37% year-over-year
GAAP operating loss $(84.9) million; non-GAAP operating loss $(5.4) million
Operating cash flow was $35.1 million, up $28.5 million year-over-year
Free cash flow was $11.3 million, up $29.0 million year-over-year
Total cash and investments of $1.3 billion
I bolded the Subscription Services Revenue bullet because to me that's a big deal. Pure Storage keeps them coming back with products such as Pure-as-a-service and Cloud Block Store and everybody knows that the recurring revenue model is best model. Big ass enterprises buy storage from vendors such as Pure Storage in the cloud to prevent vendor lock-in by the cloud providers. $$$ >!💰< What are Pure Storage's other revenue drivers? Well these motherfuckers also have the products to address the growth of Cloud storage as well as the products to drive the growth of on-prem storage. For on-prem data center, Pure sells Flash Array to address block storage workloads (for databases and other mission-critical workloads) and FlashBlade for unstructured or file data workloads. On-prem storage revenue is mainly driven by legacy storage array replacement cycle. https://preview.redd.it/01su6chrwnf51.png?width=1129&format=png&auto=webp&s=16e6a705f9392291bc0c3932c815802d9101365e So far, it seems like Pure Storage's obviously passionate and smart as fuck CEO has been spot on with his prediction of the flash storage sector's direction. Also seems like he's not camera shy either. Pure Storage's "Pure-as-a-Service and Cloud Block Store" unified subscription offerings is fo sho gaining momentum it. This shit is catching on with enterprises, both big and small. COVID-19 increased the acceleration of our digital transformation and the subsequent shift to the cloud. This increased demand in data-centers is going to drastically help Pure Storage's future top and bottom line. To top it off, NAND prices are recovering! (inferred from MU earnings). I expect Pure Storage to get some relief on the pricing front because of this which obviously in turn should improve revenues. PSTG's numbers look pretty good to me so far but are they a good company overall? Even when scalping and trading, I don't like to fuck with overall shitty companies so I always check for basic things like customer satisfaction, analyst ratings/targets, broad-view industry trends, and hedge fund positioning.. that sort of thing.Pure Storage stands out in all of these fields for me. https://preview.redd.it/4n0e5nve5of51.png?width=373&format=png&auto=webp&s=495416bb6f5a2dab77f3ac483ca4d9510b39037c Customers like Dominos Pizza and many others all seem to be happy AF with no issues. I can hardly even find a negative review online. Their products seems to be universally applauded. Gartner and other third party independent analysts also consider Pure Storage's product line-up some of the best in the industry. The industry average for this sector is a piss poor 65.Pure Storage has a 2020 Net Promoter Score of 86 https://preview.redd.it/3w51io8yvmf51.png?width=698&format=png&auto=webp&s=4f7d06825d0ad9d126216e5069af2f9c3636f86a Enterprises are upgrading their existing storage infrastructure with newer and more modern data arrays, based on NAND flash. They do this because they're forced to keep up with the increasing speed of business inter-connectivity. This shit is the 5g revolution sort to speak of the corporate business world. Storage demands and needs aren't changing because of the pandemic and isn't changing in the future. The newer storage arrays are smaller, consume less power, are less noisy and do not generate excess heat in the data center and hence do not need to be cooled like the fat fucks at IBM need to be. Flash storage arrays in general are cheaper to operate and are extremely fast, speeding up applications. Pure Storage by all accounts makes the best storage arrays in the industry and continues to grow faster than the old school storage vendors like bitchass NetApp, Dell, HPE and IBM. Pure Storage’s market share was 12.7% in C1Q20 and was up from 10.1% in the prior year - LIKE A PROPER HIGH GROWTH COMPANY.HPE, NetApp and IBM, like the losers they are, lost market share.According to blocksandfiles.com, AFA vendor market share sizes and shifts are paraphrased below:
“Dell EMC – 34.8% (calculated $766m) vs. 33.7% a year ago
NetApp – 19.3% at $425m vs. 26.7% a year ago
Pure Storage – 12.7% at calculated $279.7m vs. 10.1% a year ago
What if I told you OPERATION 10 BAGS is actually OPERATION 20 BAGS - Courtesy of Albertsons (ACI)
Edit 1: I wouldn't rush to get in immediately with how poor SPY/QQQ look at open. Waiting until later in the day when they've maybe bottomed out is likely a better move Edit 2: Broader market looks to have stabilized. Congrats if you bought the dip. But now is time to get balls deep - I'm in the process of tripling my position u/trumpdiego 's post from a few days ago on ACI inspired me to do some research of my own, and it seems operation 10 bags may actually be a 20 bagger Post for reference:https://new.reddit.com/wallstreetbets/comments/huq9eq/operation\10_bags_brought_to_you_by_albertsons/) TL;DR: ACI is a leader in multiple sub-sectors that the market has been pumping lately. Their stock hasn’t increased as much as competitors in the last month, and it is cheaper than all of them on a P/E basis. Grocery prices have been rising faster than ever before. ACI is driving customers to their stores at a rate higher than anyone else in the industry. Online grocery sales were likely close to a record $19B in Q2. ACI’s online grocery sales were up +243% in April, and close to +220% this last quarter. Both of those last two facts suggest over $36B in quarterly revenue, compared to a street consensus of ~$23B. TL;DR for the TL;DR: Albertons Companies (ACI) 8/21 $20C’s are going to the moon when they report earnings before market open on Monday 7/27, but potentially sooner if any other online grocers report what you’re about to read below. And I'll show you exactly why referencing the data that the big bois use to evaluate investments. Primer for the type of autist who likes to know what he’s YOLOing options on: ACI is a food and drug retailer that offers grocery products, general merchandise, health and beauty care products, pharmacy, and fuel in the United States, with local presence and national scale. They also own Safeway, Tom Thumb , Acme, Shaw’s, Star Market, United Supermarkets, Vons, Jewel-Osco, Randalls, Market Street, Pavilions, Carrs, and Haggen as well as meal kit company Plated based in New York City. Additionally, ACI is the #1 or #2 grocer by market share in 68% of the 121 MSAs (Metropolitan Statistical Area) they operate in. And here’s the good part: ACI is a leader in the online grocery shopping/delivery marketplace. They offer home delivery services in ~65% of their 2,200 stores, and have partnerships with Instacart, Uber Eats, and Grubhub to facilitate 1-2 hour delivery in 90% of their locations. Guess whose stock is up 75% this quarter? Grubhub. Think the market likes food delivery? Besides online grocery shopping, what else is surging due to COVID-19? Meal kits. And guess what, ACI is one of the only grocers with a meal kit offering. Demand is surging so much that Blue Apron (APRN) decided to go public on June 24th, and is already up 22.47% since then. Think the market likes meal kits? Now back to your regularly scheduled programming: Before I get into the industry and ACI specific numbers that make me TSLA levels of bullish on ACI – let me tell you what the market thinks. Q: “Why do I care what the market thinks? I’m smarter than it!” – Probably most of you. A: “Because it doesn’t matter how right you are if the market doesn’t agree, especially when YOLOing short term options. Market Trends: Over the last 30 days, ACI shares are up a meager 3.43%, currently trading at a 7.3x P/E multiple of consensus 2020 earnings. Check out what the most comparable companies to ACI have done over the last 30 days, and associated 2020 expected earnings P/E they are trading at: Grocery Outlet (GO): +11.30% (39.7x) Kroger (KR): +9.16% (11.9x) Sprouts Farmers Market (SFM): +15.71% (15.1x) So what does that tell you? The market loves grocery stores right now in corona times (no shit), and ACI is relatively the cheapest stock out of all of them. The performance of Grubhub (+75% in Q2), Blue Apron (+22.47% since 6/24/20 IPO), and literally every single online retailer tell you the market’s opinion on online shopping, food delivery, and meal kits as well. If ACI were to trade at KR’s 11.9x P/E, that would make the stock worth $26.15, +63% from close today. Wonder what that means for option tendies… Oh what’s that? You’re asking why ACI could start trading on par with KR at a 11.9x P/E? Great question! Let me get into why this sexy boi will print: Starting from a macro perspective, CPI: Food at Home (NSA) is the consumer price metric that tracks inflation in food prices as grocery stores and related establishments. After deflating -.16% in 2018 and inflating just .03% in 2019, CPI: Food at Home (NSA) is +4.74% thus far in 2020. Why is this? Food prices are historically correlated with Disposable Personal Income, which also increased at its highest rate ever through Q2’2020. So as long as big daddy Powell has the money printer going brrrrrr, Albertsons will be making more and more money on each sale. Now, this food price inflation does benefit every grocer. However, let’s take a look at the ID Sales (which is the grocer equivalent of same-store-sales) trends recently for ACI and its main competitors that I was able to find data on:
So through at least April, ACI has been in a class of their own when it comes to generating repeated traffic at their locations. Courtesy of the fine people at Morgan Stanley, we also know ID Sales were +16% in June (so you can deduce they were in the +17% to +20% range in May), and still up “double-digit percentage” thus far in July. So far we’re established that ACI is selling their products for the most they ever have, and generating more traffic at identical stores than all their competitors. This data is affirmed by JP Morgan’s foot traffic index which shows ACI taking customer from Kroger. But wait – here’s the sexy part: Time to forecast ACI’s online sales this quarter using published industry data: According to new research released 7/6/20 by Brick Meets Click and Mercatus, U.S. online grocery sales hit a record $7.2 billion in June, up 9% over May. Let’s do some quick maths and deduce that online grocery sales were $6.61B in May. Now let’s be super conservative and say May was a 20% increase over April (realistically I would guess closer to +5-10%), and that gives us $5.51B in online grocery sales in April. This means we likely had ~$19B in online grocery sales in Q2. As ACI represented 1.60% of the online grocery marketplace in 2019, that would imply $304M in online revenue this past quarter. This is very conservative though, as even after assuming a 20% drop in April relative to May, we also assumed their market share stayed at 1.60%. Remember those nice people at JPM who’s foot traffic tracker told us that ACI was stealing customers from KR? Well they also estimate ACI’s 1.60% market share in online groceries to reach 2.50%-2.80% in 2025, with a CAGR (cumulative average growth rate) of ~9% in market share per year. That means their 1.60% market share is likely 1.744% now. Take 1.744% of $19B, and:
!!!!That means $331.36M of online sales!!!!
Remember this number Now that we have an estimate for ACI’s online sales based on the broader industry trends, lets come up with an estimate using only company data: On their last earnings call, management noted that online sales had grown 83% in 2018, 39% in 2019, +278% in the first 12-weeks of 2020, and +243% in April (Remember this number too!). Can you hear your Robinhood account balance going brrrrr? If not, the oven is about to get turned up faster Jerome can print a milli: Math time! · ACI did ~$265.4M in online sales in 2018. Source: https://www.digitalcommerce360.com/2019/11/04/albertsons-embraces-omnichannel-retail/#:~:text=Albertsons%20does%20not%20break%20out,%2461%20billion%20in%20total%20revenue. · That means they did ~370M in online sales in 2019. · ACI had $62.455B in 2019 revenue. · Which means 0.59% of their sales were online. · Working backwards off their Q2’19 revenue of $18.738B, we arrive at $111M in online revenue. · Let’s be conservative and assume some sequential decline from their April online sales growth (the second number you should have remembered) and put Q2 online sales at +220%.
!!!!That means $355M in online sales!!!!
Remember that first number I told you to keep in mind? $331.36M. Considering entirely different data sets were used to find each number, it may not be so crazy to think it could be a pretty accurate forecast of the online sales when they report earnings. But since you’re so smart I know you’re on the edge of your seat wondering what that would mean for their total revenue Let’s take the average of both forecasts, and use $343.18M as our forecast for online revenue. Given online sales were 0.59% of 2019 revenue, it would imply $58.166B in revenue this quarter, compared to the $22.78B street consensus estimate. Admittedly, online sales staying at .59% is unrealistic due to how many consumers would shop online instead of in the store. Here’s some more math to deduce the new percentage: · In 2018, 0.44% of their sales were online · When online sales rose 39% in 2019, the proportion went up to 0.59% · So a 39% increase in online sales led to a 0.15% greater contribution of online sales to total revenue · Therefore a 220% increase would mean a 0.345% increase in proportion of online sales, putting them at .935% of total sales
!!!!!That gives us $36.704B in revenue for this past quarter vs a consensus of just under $22.78B. A beat by over 60%!!!!!
If you’re one of the rare autists to realize that revenue is only one half of the earnings equation, and your costs are the equally as important second half: Let’s go back to our friends at JPM, in a recent research note, after mentioning the foot traffic ACI was taking from KR, they also noted that ACI has superior gross margins to KR, as their stores are strategically located further from aggressively low priced competitors such as Aldi and WalMart. Additionally, they praised ACI’s recent cost savings initiatives that have been underway for some time now, and believe they would lead to some of the best margins in the industry. So you’re telling me ACI is going to make way more money than anyone expects this quarter, while also having lower costs? That must mean call options are crazy expensive, right?? Wrong. The aforementioned option is trading at just $0.50. That means after earnings when the stock rips to $30, they could be worth $11, does a 2,100% return sound good to you too? And for you especially literate autists, the IV is only 91.61%.
ACI 8/21 $20C
Let’s ride this fucker to the moon
Happy to respond to any questions/comments on sources for some of the data I presented or anything else your autistic brain comes up with regarding ACI
Beating the UK brokerage via true arbitrage - £8k -> £98k ($128k) since 21st April
Alright you American autists, here's a gains post from the UK across the pond - listen up because it's pretty incredible, managed to screw over our broker to turn ~£8k into £98k / $128k USD by reading the small print, true u/fuzzyblankeet style. https://preview.redd.it/9mlup18v0q951.png?width=343&format=png&auto=webp&s=aea1393d304d16063d62d54d30cc5be9b23d937a Unfortunately, we don't have options trading, commission free robinhood which crashes, or any other US based degeneracy, but instead we British chaps can trade "CFDs" ie. 'contracts-for-difference', which are essentially naked long / short positions with a 10-20% margin (5-10x leveraged), a 'holding cost' and you could theoretically lose more than your initial margin - sounds like true wallstreetbets autism, right? Well grab a lite beer (or whatever you lite alcoholic chaps drink over there) and strap in for this stuff: So, CMC Markets, a UK based CFD brokerage, wanted to create a West Texas Intermediate Crude Oil 'Spot' product, despite WTI contracts trading in specific monthly expirations which can thus have severe contango effects (as all of you $USO call holders who got screwed know) - this was just a product called "Crude Oil West Texas - Cash", and was pegged to the nearest front-month, but had no expiry date, only a specific holding cost -> already a degenerate idea from their part. So in early April, just before when the WTI May-20 expiry contract 'rolled' at **negative** $-37, the "WTI Cash" was trading at $15 at the time, but the *next* month June-20 expiry was still $30+ we (I am co-running an account with an ex-Goldman colleague of mine) simultaneously entered into a long position on the "WTI - Cash" product, and went short on the "WTI Jun-20 expiry", a pure convergence play. Sure enough, the June-20 tanked the following week, and we made over £35k, realised profits. But meanwhile the May-20 also tanked, and we were down £28k. But rather than realise this loss, we figured we could just hold it until Oil prices recover, and profit on both legs of the trade. However, CMC Markets suddenly realised they are going to lose a lot of money with negative oil prices (Interactive Brokers lost $104m, also retards), so they screwed everyone holding the "WTI - Cash" product trading at $8 at the time, and pegged it to the December 2020 expiry trading at $30, with a 'discount factor' to catch up between the two. https://preview.redd.it/zjjzyahx0q951.png?width=517&format=png&auto=webp&s=9523bab878f06702133631f12c1109081f299f65 Now fellow autists, read the above email and try to figure out what the pure arbitrage is. CMC markets will charge us a 0.61% **per day** holding cost (calculated as the 10x levered value of whatever original margin you put up, so in our case £8k*10x=£80k*0.61% = £500 per day, £1.5k on weekends for extra fun) on our open positions, but also "increase" the position value by 0.61% per day vs. the **previous day's** WTI - Cash value. Got it yet? No? Still retarded? Here's where maths really helps you make tendies:-> If your 'cost' is fixed at 0.61% of your original levered position, but your 'gains' are 0.61% of the previous day's position, then your gains will be ever increasing, whereas your costs are fixed. So we added some extra £££ (as much as we could justifiably put into a degenerate 10x levered CFD account) and tried to see if it works. Long story short, it does. At this point in July we were making **over £1k per day on a £8k initial position*\* regardless where the WTI Dec-20 fwd moved. Unfortunately, eventually CMC markets realised what utter retards they were, and closed down the arbitrage loophole, applying the holding costs to the previous day's value. But not before we turned £8k into £98k, less holding costs. https://preview.redd.it/uh0f8knz0q951.png?width=553&format=png&auto=webp&s=c7e629f72de5aeb4e837ccef44ecae708f058bee Long story short, puts on $CMCX they're total retards, and given what a startup robinhood / other brokerages are, never assume that only they are the ones taking your tendies away, sometimes you can turn the tables on them!
Not claiming to be an expert on anything. My opinion: Rey Rivera did not commit suicide, foul play was involved, and his note may be a code trying to implicate those who may be involved. I believe there is much more circumstantial and direct evidence that points towards a homicide rather than a suicide. I try to give credit where it is due and if I am repeating things that have already been posted, I apologize. Please, since it has already been discussed so much in many other posts, if you are going to insist on speculating about his mental state on this post too, include a diagnostic criteria for the condition/diagnosis you are claiming and evidence of how Rey fits each criteria. You cannot make conclusions on anyone's mental state simply based off reading a book, articles and Netflix. Either Stansberry’s crisis management team has people on Reddit, or a very large amount of people believe they became overnight experts in mental health. Neither of these will hold up in court. Unless you are a psychiatrist or psychologist, you are not qualified to make assumptions about his mental health that would be permissible as evidence in a court of law so let's leave that to them. I believe there were real reasons behind Rey’s paranoia, and I believe the note is code for the corruption he was dragged into. The note has been hypothesized to be a coded message or a tone reel for a movie, there is no evidence to prove it was or wasn't that, vs. being considered ramblings during a psychotic break as others have speculated (there is no direct evidence to support this). There is also no evidence to prove that it wasn’t planted there, considering he had two attempted break-ins at his house right before his death and the house was left vacant for hours after his death until Allison returned back to Baltimore. My opinion is that Rey wrote it as a coded message in the form of a tone reel since he was a writer and filmmaker first and I’ll state what I believe to be proof of this below. Facts :
He had 2 recent alarms triggered at his house the days before his death which could have been possible break-in attempts
Someone form the Stansberry & Associates building was the last person reported to talk to him before his death. He worked for a very shady company (some evidence at the bottom of this post), that placed a call to him around 6:30pm the night he went missing, causing him to run out of his house.
Both of the facts above warranted a better investigation by the Baltimore Police Department that did not happen. The last reported person to talk to a victim is often the first POI to investigative authorities. to him was someone that called him around 6:30 from the Stansberry and Associates building.
Stansberry and Associates either put a gag order on the company (and a recent memo released stating they didnt is a lie) OR all Stansberry and Agora employees were instructed to not talk to anyone about Rey’s death as proven and reported by law enforcement, many reporters, family members, and the author of the book An Unexplained Death when they received that answer while attempting to reach out to the company and to Porter.
Stansberry & Associates hired a Crisis management team for the firm 6 months ago after their cease and desist letter aimed at stopping the airing of the Netflix documentary regarding Rey's death did not work.
There were 0 witnesses that saw Rey enter or in the building previously known as the Belvedere that night, which law enforcement reported he frequented. You would have thought at least one employee or concierge for the condominium would have seen him come in if he did jump from there, considering it is part of their job to greet and provide assistance to those entering.
? looking to confirm: There were no signs of Rey's shirt being torn when his body was found.
The coroner also reported the cause of death as undetermined and could not conclude it was a suicide. We should start another post to discuss the autopsy results in detail.
The FBI report on the note states that overall themes and language are “consistent with someone who suffers from a delusional disorder” It describes delusional disorders, how they are relatively rare affecting 24-30 out of every 100,000 people and that the onset is relatively late with average age being 40-49. It does not appear that they looked into connections it had to any code, or that they knew what a tone reel was.
The report also states “BAU is unable to confirm the identity of the author of the letter without further analysis.” There is then a full page of “Investigative Suggestions" for the BPD to investigate: (There is also question as to what, if any, from that list of suggestions was actually investigated after the report.) * BAU suggests [redacted] several meetings/interviews. [full sentence redacted]. The purpose of these interviews to develop additional leads…[>2 lines redacted]. As mentioned by BPD, [redacted]. These interviews should take place in a non-threatening environment. [2 lines redacted] In an effort to generate further leads, investigators should carefully review [2 lines redacted]. Rivera’s family members (brothers, sisters, parents) should also be re-interviewed regarding his health. (per the Netflix documentary, we know the family does not believe he was suffering from mental delusions.) * BAU recommends [>3 lines redacted]. FBI Baltimore may be able to assist BPD…[>3 lines redacted].* BAU recommends determining [redacted].* BAU recommends requesting forensic testing [redacted]. BAU understands that [redacted] during the investigation [> 2 lines redacted]. BPD should also determine [redacted]. * BAU recommends requesting forensic analysis of the computer printer where the letter was found. [>3 lines redacted]. FBI Baltimore’s Computer Analysis Response Team can assist with the analysis of Rivera’s computer [>3 lines redacted]. * BAU offered to [redacted]. It is recommended that BPD provide BAU with [redacted]. * BAU recommends that BPD [>2lines redacted]. ------------- Things being used to defend this deteriorating mental health theory are:
his wife noticed him paranoid and stressed the weeks leading up to his death.
The note that he allegedly left - more details below at 2a
The FBI said it was NOT a suicide note, discusses it could be characteristic of someone with Bipolar Disorder BUT Rey did not exhibit these characteristics.
There is no evidence to prove the note was placed by him or that it wasn’t planted.
This note has as much evidence proving it was a code as it does that it was "rambling"
Some valid connections have already been made on this note by Reddit posters in the google doc by TrueCrime Pyrex and others
The only name repeated over and over again in the note is Porter’s name
Recent Researching of Freemasons
1a. paranoia - Rey had real reasons behind his paranoia. Rey Rivera was working for a shady financial firm and making millions of dollars. These firms are notorious for having connections to powerful underground criminals. He was hired by this firm to “clean up their image” and write the Rebound Report one year after the SEC had filed a complaint against Stansberry & Associates for giving false advice on stocks that later tanked. So, a filmmaker with no finance experience was hired to write about suggesting cheap stocks that were supposedly going to make a quick turnaround. People were angry and had lost millions of dollars after the SEC filing. There is an article about the exact details below. Additionally, Rey's friend who also worked for Agora - Hickling- had died just a couple months before Rey’s death allegedly in a car accident in Zambia. Rey had two tripped alarms in his house (suggesting attempted break-ins) in the nights leading up to his death. He had valid reasons to be paranoid. There were valid reasons for people to be after him, and there were valid reasons for him to be concerned and protective of his wife as many times these criminals will come after the person closest to them instead of the individual themself. 2a. The note- Many film creators have said the note looks not similar, but exactly like a tone reel. Also hypothesized are that it could have been a code for something or that it could have also been planted there, since there were 2 tripped alarms at his house. Many who have attempted to piece together the note from screenshots also point out that there are multiple versions of it, suggesting that if he did write it, it was written over a longer period of time than a day. In my opinion, all these theories have the same validity/amount of evidence as the delusional theory. Some theories and opinions on the note: many made by Reddit users under the google doc that TrueCrime Pyrex started (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1CUynVxK37ReWqJ2r3jyue0hUMh36GfiRAzYXG-Q8IE8/edit#)
“Along with myself, these players would be made 5 years younger by the council”
5 years before 2006 was 2001 and the devastating year the WTC was attacked (9/11). It was one of the world’s most active stock trading buildings; The SEC complaint against Agora for defrauding investors was in 2003.
A poster on the Google Docs note (lmk if you want your name mentioned here) stated:
Porter Stansberry works for Agora which is the newsletter company that provided the alibi for the 9/11 put options.
The treasurer of Agora was found dead (ruled suicide) in the woods behind his home. He was good friend with Buzzy Krongard, exec dir of the CIA on 9/11.
Porter got married on 9/11/04 and had his first child (induced) on 9/11/07.
" Again, well done to all who participated. I expect the council has invited all the players who gave their lives to this pursuit back so they may join us here: Thom Hickling a, Rayburn b, Batchelder c, Joan Tellini d, Stanley Kubrick.
All these people are deceased. Thom Hickling worked at Agora and allegedly died in a car crash in Zambia a couple of months before Rey’s Death. Thom Hickling had signs of trauma to the back of his lower head. Other connections made in the Google Doc.
In an Unexplained Death, Mikita Brottman writes:
"Some have suggested to me that Rey's death was connected to the death of a gentleman named Thom Hickling who worked at Agora. Rey had become especially close to Hickling, who was killed in a car accident while visiting his daughter in Africa. His death is often mentioned as a turning point for Rey, who apparently found it suspicious. Rey's mother told me that Rey and Hickling were good friends. "Rey liked him very much," she said. "He talked to me about him. He said he was a real person. Honest. And this guy died somewhere overseas- I don't remember where. All I remember is that it was a very weird situation in which he died And Rey got very concerned."
"To arrange for future transactions you should visit me at of any of the properties that I will resume control of: My primary residence which includes a beautiful piece of property in Northern Argentina , and I'm told, (has) biggest mansion in Buenos Aires. Well done, Porter. (Referring to Porter Stansberry)In Europe you can wait at the flat in Nice or in Madrid . Although if I'm in Spain I'll probably be at the (cadiz). In Asia you will be able to find me in Thailand. Another job well done, Porter." (Referring to Porter Stansberry)
Bill Bonner, founder of Agora, the umbrella company of Stansberry & Associates owns two chateaux in France and is a large landholder in Argentina, and Agora International has offices in Madrid and in Thailand.
Searching this book, Where in the World Should I invest: An Insider’s Guide to Making Money… the author says,” He’s been around much longer than me and has been investing in places like Thailand long before it showed up on any…the person who hired me to do what I do more than 20 years ago, Bill Bonner, is also a large landholder in Argentina”
Bill Bonner also wrote a book titled Financial Reckoning Day:Fallout
One line simply states: "Porter Stansberry, if he didn’t do it himself." I believe this to be a very important line. Porter’s name was also the only name repeated over and over in the note.
"Brothers and sisters, our land of attachments has seen many ideas become new innovations since my game began:
Digital music players (portables and otherwise)
Computer Operating Systems
Portable Data Assistants
Horizontal Drilling for (word) (word)
(Fracking?) gas to drill in shale In both versions
[----The are more listed (discrepancies in Netflix shot of note versus older versions of note) and then...] "The rights, patents *, and proceeds for all of (them) (should) have been transferred to me by now. I know that our friend, Porter Stansberry has (caused) a way for you to do so."
Whats listed above was a lot of up and coming technologies for the first decade of 2000. Rey was writing a financial newsletter recommending stocks that should make investors a large amount of money. I wonder if in him listing these there is an association with their parent companies for the above listed technologies, and their patents, profits, and possibly insider information/insider trading that had to do with the corruption going on within the company. This is a theory does anyone have any thoughts/know more about this stuff?
3a. Freemasons. The act alone of researching Freemasons does not indicate a psychotic state. In the book, An Unexplained Death, Mikita Brottman writes: "Stein learns from a Master Mason that Fred Bealefield, who was the chief of detectives during the Rivera case and later police commissioner, is also a Master Mason. This news does not surprise me. Many policemen are members of the Freemasons; it does not make either the police of the Freemasons especially sinister. I often invite Master Masons to speak to my classes about the history of their organization, which I have come to see as a benevolent fraternal charity with an archaic structure and hierarchy, not a malevolent force running the universe, or even the city. In other words, I think the Masonic angle is a red herring. I believe Rey's interest in the group was part of his research for something new he was writing." ---- Per those close to Rey, their theory is that has something to do with the Rebound Report, and the fact that the company had just come out of being fined 1.x millions dollars for misleading investors. (Also The Rebound Report may not have been accurate?) I believe looking into these reports would provide further information. Also mentioned, If Rey were to go meet someone at the condominium he allegedly jumped from, he would not have worn flip-flops and track pants. He was going to go see someone he knew. ---- Circumstantial and direct indicators of foul play/cover-up: - In An Unexplained Death, Mikita Brottman writes: 'An anonymous comment on an article about the case by Stephen Janis posted at the Baltimore Examiner website puts this theory in a nutshell. "Rey was a very inquisitive man, a truth-seeker. He had information that threatened something larger than himself and was murdered for it." ' 'Others have suggested that Rey's death may have been connected to developments in Nicaragua, where Agora owns a large stretch of coastline. Those who have studied the case often refer to "Nicaragua" in cryptic terms.'
does anyone know what this cryptic term is?
currently, one of The Oxford Club member options in the "Oxfordian Hotel Collection" is Rancho Santana in Rivas, Nicaragua.
Oxford Club was originally called The Royal Society of Lichtenstein which was promoting a business called Goldcor, which turned out to scam investors with their gold-extraction methods in Costa Rica. Goldcor President Brown was found with a bullet in his head in November 1991.
Options Hotline and 9/11: In the investigations following 9/11, the SEC determined that an unusual number of investors had purchased put options on American Airlines immediately prior to September 11, 2001. Further investigation found Agora'sOptions Hotlinenewsletter and its editor Steve Sarnoff as responsible for faxing some 2,000 subscribers the recommendation to buy put options on American Airlines on September 9, 2001.Sarnoff was investigated for insider trading with the SEC eventually concluding “all suspicious trades were checked out, and the SEC satisfied itself that the traders had no advance knowledge of 9/ll.”
The more I google this case, the more I see old articles and blog posts referencing Baltimore news sites or Stansberry’s website, only to click on these links and find that the pages are no longer available - why?
Even if you defend that Stansberry was simply trying to defend his shady activities, why have websites like CBS Baltimore, WBAL TV , and others remove their articles about Rey Rivera’s death?
Why was the main LE nvestigator removed from the case when he started suspecting murder?
Why didn’t police follow up on many suspected leads, as suggested in the final FBI report investigation into Rey’s letter?
Why are so many names and people listed in the FBI report as possible follow-ups for leads redacted from the report but Ray's family members and Allison listed ?
articles / blogposts with links that have since been deleted. One example: https://invanddis.proboards.com/thread/5923 where it discusses more about the cameras than what I have read anywhere else- it wasn't simply a malfunction:
cover-up: “the cameras malfunctioned”. An article since deleted but referenced in the linked blogpost states:
"Bizarre is also how Allison Rivera describe the obstacles she encountered trying to help police search for clues. Confident that her husband’s death was foul play, she hired a private detective who accompanied her to The Belvedere to review the video surveillance. But Allison soon discovered that the surveillance system malfunctioned on the day her husband disappeared. “Somebody put 'protect' on the day of the 15th that consumed about 85 percent of the hard drive,” she recalled learning. “Somebody hit 'protect' on the system; there is button on the key board in the concierge areas, and there is a computer in the back.” The timing of the erasure is troubling, Allison said.“If it was on May 1, that's an accident but if it's on May 15, that is a totally different story.”An employee of the former hotel who has knowledge of the camera system but asked to remain anonymous could not confirm Allison's allegations. The employee said that police had confiscated the hard drives." ------------------------------------------------------- Below here are a few news article links and old posts from disgruntled investors regarding the shady practices of Agora and possible motives for killing. Many article links have since been removed from the internet. Please bear in mind I am not citing below things as facts, although many have since proven to be. I find it interesting and possibly relevant to Rey Rivera's death
The complaint alleges that Frank Porter Stansberry, the company?s owner, sent an e-mail in 2002 that said investors could "Double Your Money" by investing in a company that was alleged to be on the verge of signing a contract to dismantle "nuclear warheads" for Russia. The newsletter offered the name of the company for$1,000, the complaint said. The complaint alleges that "the information was false." Karen Martinez, one of the SEC attorneys who filed the complaint against Stansberry, said **investors who paid for the tip are angry. "**Many investors testified in discovery that they lost substantial amounts of money based on the investment advice of the company," Martinez said. "Investors said they were very unhappy," she added.
From the desk of Porter Stansberry: When my best friend, Rey Rivera, disappeared last year, we had to find his car (and then his .... Porter Stansberry Baltimore, Maryland December 21, 2006 ... Porter Comments:'The Baltimore sheriff is after me…'-Porter Stansberry
Other Poster's comments:
And Porter Stansberry was by his very admission,a suspect in the murder of his own friend and employee Rey Rivera.The U.S.SEC itself has admitted that his and Agora Inc.'s CIA connected Agora Inc.'s Rebound Report that Mr.Rey Rivera was editor of before his mysterious death was a fraud and I know from personal experience that James Dale Davidson's,Porter Stansberry's and Agora Inc.'s illegal pumps and dumps were covered up and in fact removed from SEC litigation against Agora by corrupt Utah SEC attorneys Brent Baker and Karen Martinez - thus guaranteeing that Stansberry and Davidson would go free yet again after decades of gold,oil,real estate and myriad stock fraud scams against American investors,all of which sent and continue to send dollars out of the U.S.economy to offshore accounts of international criminals,albeit elite criminals.
On this page is also a letter by Tony Ryals to Alex Jones of all people (Alex Jones has some youtube videos with STansberry and Associates- look them up).
I found the letter interesting(included relevant parts only but you can read the whole thing at the above indy link) :
Dear Alex Jones,
If I ever had any doubts whatsoever about your corruption and cover up and disinformation propaganda re 9/11…your promotion of Agora Inc.'s stock fraudster and murder suspect,(in the case of his 'friend' Rey Rivera of Agora Inc Rebound Report fraud,etc.),has ended all that. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were also part of Agora Inc.'s fraud that helped send the housing market and government subsidized housing loans crashing as well.Also when it did ex SEC Chairman Christopher 'WMDS' Cox lied about Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac shares being 'naked shorted',a term that can be tracked back to Agora Inc.'s and National Taxpayers Union founder James Dale Davidson himself. Both Stansberry, Davidson and Agora scumbag Bill Bonner have a UK connection and their association with with the U.K.'s Lord or Lard William Rees-Mogg guarantees a Rothschild connection…I no longer have any doubt even an idiot such as yourself, with your far right women's rights denier Ron Paul connections, that you know you are in cahoots with the CIA because his and your pals at Agora Inc have CIA and George Tenet connections…Sincerely, Tony Ryals Corrupt SEC attorney Karen Martinez who along with SEC attorney Brent Baker removed all charges against Stansberry and James Dale Davidson regarding their illegal pumps and dumps of biotech penny stock frauds **Endovasc and Genemax in 2003 tries to blame or insinuate the probable murder of Rey Rivera was done by defrauded investors such as myself mno doubt.**And I myself suspect that Stansberry's and Lila Rajiva's invitation to me to visit his office in 2005 was either as a set up or to murder me as well .Shortly after removal of all charges against James Dale Davidson and Porter Stansberry regarding their promotion of worthless Endovasc and Genmax shares Brent Baker 'retired' from his SEC job and was rewarded or bribed by Patrick Byrne of Overstock.com and himself began to openly promote the lie that Overstock shares were like the other penny stocks a victim of 'naked shorting' or naked short selling by some unknown entity. Byrne even claimed it was a or the 'Sith Lord' ! Davidson's NAANSS or National Association Against Naked Short Selling' was disapeared from the internet in 2005 and replaced with NCANS or National Coalition Against Naked Shorting with a number of lieing websites claiming a huge amount of stock frauds were really victims of 'naked shorting' ! In 2008 even the ex SEC Chairman lied on the sec.goc website about Fannie Mae,Freddie Mac,AIG,UBS and even Goldman Sachs shares collpsed in value due to 'naked short selling' ! -Tony Ryals Missing Baltimore Man Getting National Attention - wjz.com23 May 2006 ... It's been a week since a Northeast Baltimore man was last seen, and police say there is still no sign of 32-year old Rey Rivera. http://www.wjz.com/topstories/Rey.Rivera.Missing.2.422531.html Suicide Or Murder? Evidence Reviewed - Baltimore, Maryland News ...BALTIMORE -- The mystery behind a Baltimore businessman who fell to his ... http://www.wbaltv.com/13334811/detail.html http://washingtonexaminer.com/local/man-found-dead-belvedere-worked-comp Man found dead at Belvedere worked at company that had SEC complaint By: Stephen Janis 06/01/06 2:00 AM Examiner Staff Writer Karen Martinez, one of the SEC attorneys who filed the complaint against Stansberry, said investors who paid for the tip are angry. "Many investors testified in discovery that they lost substantial amounts of money based on the investment advice of the company," Martinez said. "Investors said they were very unhappy," she added. An official speaking on behalf of Stansberry Associates said they had no comment on the SEC complaint. Martinez said Stansberry denied the allegations in court and that the case was pending, awaiting the judge?s decision, she said. Who killed Rey Rivera? | What's Inside Our Brains6 Feb 2010 ... suicide of Rey Rivera, whose body was found on a roof of the Belvedere building in Mt. Vernon in 2006. As I recall from the original ... http://www.whatsinsideourbrains.com/?p=292 LAND OF THE UNSOLVED - The last days of Rey Rivera10 Aug 2009 ... But the patch over the bituminous paving atop a second-floor office at The Belvedere hides a secret the widow of filmaker Rey Rivera thinks ... http://www.investigativevoice.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=:the-land-of-the-unsolved-the-last-days-of-rey-rivera&catid=25:the-project&Itemid=44 Working links: Baltimore Crime: Rey Rivera10 Aug 2009 ... can see Rey Rivera's 'friend' and employer Porter Stansberry invited me to visit Agora Inc. and Baltimore in 2005. ... http://www.baltimorecrime.blogspot.com/2009/08/rey-rivera.html “I briefly quote and provide link from Bill Bonner's Baltimore co-author Lila Rajiva herself who wrote an article about her employers' Goldcor connection and the strange 'suicide' of Goldcor President Richard Brown who was found with a bullet in his head in November 1991 as Goldcor began to unravel.” http://baltimore.indymedia.org/newswire/display/11382/index.php …link no longer works either http://neworleans.indymedia.org/news/2010/03/14797.phpDeath In Baltimore:Agora Inc.,Rey Rivera,Porter Stansberry,James Dale Davidson,Bill Bonner “This post has to do with the mysterious death of Agora Inc employee Rey Rivera in 2006 who was committing stock fraud for his own personal gain and more so for the profits of his bosses at Agora Inc that included his evil 'friend' of years past,Porter Stansberry, as well as Bill Bonner,James Dale Davidson and the evil Lord William Rees-Mogg of UK who founded or who have been behind Agora Inc stock fraud and money laundering operation for decades. .”
*NOTE\* The goal of this DD was to provide a cohesive and whole picture of Chegg as a company, taking into account the booming growth they’ve been experiencing during this past quarter. There’s been a lot of talk of Chegg on this subreddit lately but I want to explain why I think it’s about to be the last, best time to buy in before earnings. If you disagree then I urge you to tell me how I’m being autistic and which crucial elements I’m overlooking. In my personal opinion, I believe that Chegg is a solid play in the short term based off both the technicals and the environment in which Chegg exists. As we lead up to Chegg’s earnings on 8/3/2020 and as more people realize Chegg’s continued demand throughout 2020, I believe there will be a substantial run up to play off of (or maybe even multiple as we’ve seen over the past month). OVERVIEW: Chegg is the leading student-first interconnected learning platform, which is on-demand, adaptive, personalized, and backed up by a network of human help. They provide textbooks, 24/7 tutoring, and solutions for a multitude of subjects. Key notes: · Leading direct-to-student connected learning platform · Large addressable market with compelling market trends · High growth and high margin model · Competitive moat given brand, reach, data, and propriety content Chegg is focused on an online, on-demand approach to providing education to students. This has become especially useful with COVID which is going to affect students through the rest of 2020. Chegg’s earnings report is supposed to be on 8/3/2020. I plan on playing off of this run up which I don’t believe is fully factored into the pricing of this stock. Let’s dive in! RELEVANT NEWS: Mass Arbitration: Source If you are/were a student like I was during these years, you may remember the huge Chegg data breach that occurred in 2018. The fallout of this data breach is still affecting Chegg. In April 2020, Z Law filed a class action lawsuit for more than 15,000 individuals asserting a claim of $25,000 for each Chegg customer. Reportedly in June, the American Arbitration Association (AAA) instructed Chegg to pay about $7.5M in fees to launch the arbitrations. Rather than pay these fees, Chegg argued that the customers included in the lawsuit had ‘breached their user agreements by asserting frivolous or improper demands for arbitration.’ Now I don’t have a law degree but this just sounds like a Catch 22 that won’t necessarily hold up in court, and it doesn’t look like it will. It should be noted that all of this information is from a principal at Z Law since Chegg has not responded to requests for information on this issue as of yet. It is likely that this situation will come to a head soon with these latest updates being in the past couple of months. Schools Closing: We are seeing a number of states, or at least counties, mandate that children not go back to school yet this Fall. I believe that this will be a catalyst for increased demand of Chegg’s services. Between their online classrooms, tutoring, and problem solutions, Chegg is in a perfect spot to take advantage of what’s happening for continued growth throughout 2020. FINANCIALS: Market Cap growth vs. Revenue Growth Source · Chegg revenue growth for quarter ending 3/31/2020 was $0.132B, a 35.09% increase from 2019 · Market cap during this period went from $4.4B to $4.19B, a -4% decrease from 2019* * It should be noted that while it’s a great sign that Chegg’s revenue growth is outpacing it’s market cap growth, since last quarter’s earnings were so good, market cap blew out to $8.69B as of this past week, which results in a 67% increase from last year’s 7/15/2019 market cap of $5.20B · Chegg’s annual EPS has been slowly growing by around 30% per year, with the earnings in March 2020 representing a 25% increase since the previous year to $-0.05 EPS. · Chegg’s current P/E ratio is 75.26 TECHNICALS: Source Chegg currently has a resistance of $79.48 with its nearest two supports at $70.15 and $66.76. With the downward trend of the stock market this past week, we saw the share price kiss the first support Tuesday morning when the price dropped but then it slowing gained back throughout the rest of the week. RSI Analysis: Current RSI Level: 63.34 We’ve seen the RSI stay around this level ever since Chegg’s earnings report in March, only breaking out to overbought occasionally before coming back down to near neutral levels (as we saw this past week). In fact, the correction that occurred last week offers a perfect, and quite possibly the last, best set up as we head towards earnings a few weeks from now. *Note: Stochastic oscillator is closer to 50 currently but I’m choosing to evaluate Chegg based on RSI since this stock has been booming all year and strongly trending upwards. MACD Analysis: As of market close this past week, the MACD is currently just barely below its signal line. This is inherently a bearish signal, but the signal line and MACD have been dancing on either side of each other since last earnings, providing lots of opportunities to play these short run ups. The only reason the MACD is below the signal line is because of the correction that occurred last week, meaning that we’re in a perfect spot to take advantage of the next run up. The current signs that I’m seeing that tell me that the train is on its way to tendie town: 1) As of Friday, the stock is trading in an upwards direction above both the EMA and SMA lines indicating very solid price strength 2) The MACD is on the verge of crossing back over its signal line which is a bullish sign to buy and 3) the RSI doesn’t yet indicate that the stock is overbought (but it is heading in that direction). That being said, current resistance levels are set at $79.48. Over the past month, Chegg has been reaching its resistance, falling back, then shooting up past its resistance again – just look at the past month’s chart for Chegg. Past resistance was $75 so I feel confident that this’ll climb to at least $80 but likely higher once the earnings run up starts getting priced in. Once the MACD gives the signal, I will be looking to buy call options at $5 above its last peak of $75.02. This is purely based on my own risk tolerance, I’m sure that higher options would be profitable too though. I’m choosing $5 above since that’s the pattern I’ve been seeing with resistance lines since the last earnings report, but I won’t be selling until I see a downtrend. This could easily go $5-$10 past resistance in anticipation of earnings. It’s also worth noting that the stock has already climbed $3-$4 in the past few days after dropping. That’s a few dollars of growth that we’re missing out on, but that’s the price we pay for confidence. The price strength is finally looking strong enough to buy in which is why I’m sending out this DD. EMA: The current 20 day EMA is $69.06 which it fell below earlier this week but quickly rebounded back on top of it and has been growing steadily ever since. tldr: Long term investors: Hard to tell if the pump this year will continue as COVID inevitably dies down. Past this year I highly doubt that Chegg can continue this growth. But honestly what do I know. Mid term investors: Chegg looks to be strong and growing. The school year will offer a surge of revenue in Q3 but at the same time it’s hard to tell if this same level of growth will continue. You should also be on the lookout for negative catalysts such as this arbitration lawsuit. Short term investors: All systems are a go for some 8/21 $80c. Once we’re locked in, I’m expecting slow and steady gains for the next couple of weeks. If you buy in then I urge you to monitor RSI levels and be on the lookout for a sell off, especially as it approaches $80. If anything, at least set a trailing stop loss. But on the likelihood that this puppy shoots past resistance, we’re looking at a share price of anywhere from $80-$90. Conservatively estimating 50-120% profit depending on how fast it climbs and when it starts to sell off, ideally hold till right before earnings though.
*** Updated Research SWK provides an amazing opportunity to take advantage of the bull market in precious metals at an undemanding valuation with excellent operational momentum. Environment: Precious metals have had a phenomenal ride lately; both due to fear arising from COVID-19, and coordinated monetary policy stimulating economies at an unprecedented level. The graphic below shows the recent parabolic move in GLD (overshadowed by SLV) and reflecting upon the 08 crisis and the numerous QE policies that followed, this upward trajectory may continue further. GLD vs DJIA (2006-Present) With rises in commodity prices, the logical next step is to get some operating leverage and purchase the gold miners. No doubt, this second level thinking has been handsomely rewarded albeit encountering the sovereign and FX risks with many of the global miners domiciled in South Africa and Russia: DRDGold, Polyus and Polymetal (April 20 - Present) Since many of these miners are in the process of expanding production, cash flow won't be realised for several years and operating margins may not improve as much as managements' forecast (i.e. ASX: DAC). Further, since the market has drawn the logical connection between commodity prices and miners, these companies have run a very long way in the last few months. Company Overview: This is where SWK provides us with a cheaper and lower risk opportunity to gain access to this thematic. SWK provides drilling services to large miners of metals (i.e. nickel, silver, gold etc.) in US, Canada, Europe and Australia. Specifically, they use specialised drills to extract samples, which they analyse to then assess to the viability of a site. Increasing demand for mining exploration will, intuitively, increase drilling utilisation and drilling rates. SWK also entirely owns Orexplore, which provides mobile sample analysis to determine the characteristics of extracted cores. This improves the efficiency of examining the quality of a site by removing cost (transportation and storage), timing (it can be conducted on-site), and operational risk (damage in transit) all of which further benefit the mining co. and embed SWK into the exploration process. Competitive Advantage: SWK’s competitive advantage is being able to a world class cost effective and efficient underground drilling. For example, their development of DeepEX allows for longer hole from underground that are cheaper than many shorter surface holes. Their recent contract extension from BHP at Olympic Dam despite competitors (i.e. MSV and BLY) rigs being used onsite is testament to their value proposition. SWK has also invested heavily (~$25mn) into their Orexplore technology in an attempt to move up the value chain away from high-capital intensive drilling into a higher margin business. This technology removes significant operating expenses (employees and equipment), reduces lead time (can be built and shipped globally within 2 weeks), is very simple to use (technical training is not required), and most importantly, is currently being purchased for free and is the main catalyst in this investment (more on this later). Furthermore, SWK has made a concerted effort to increasingly diversify their product offering to different miners (with exposure to various commodities), and geographically. Their global and diversified footprint has provided them with a world-wide footprint, with costs to build their global business already incurred (most recently in Pogo – Alaska), further encouraging a buyout (more on this later). FY19 Financial Report H1 2020 Financial Report Catalyst and Valuation: Exit Options: The primary catalyst for a revaluation in SWK is a huge macroeconomic tailwind providing momentum that might facilitate a sale of the drilling business to a strategic buyer. Without doing too much crystal ball gazing, I view the exit opportunities as follows: 5% - Amazing sale of drilling business = >100%+ returns; 65% - Solid sale of drilling business = 50-100% returns; 20% - No sale and general re-rate = 25-50% returns; 10% - Languishing business and capital destruction = -25%-0% returns. Given management’s firm guidance towards the sale (https://www.openbriefing.com/OB/Swick-Mining-Services-Ltd/2020/2/25/Swick-HY20-Results-Conference-Call/3716.aspx at ~08:00) I will focus on our base case that entails: (i) selling or closing surface drilling business as it’s the lowest margin / weakest vertical; (ii) selling underground drilling business; and (iii) refocus towards Orexplore either through taking the business private, IPOing a new entity or rebranding SWK. Given shareholders have been frustrated with SWKs delay in progressing the business towards a sale and having difficulty commercialising Orexplore it has been important to wait for a noticeable inflexion point in the business to attempt to “time” entry as much as possible. Let’s see how the inflexion point is here beyond the macroeconomic environment above. Miners around the world are aggressively looking to expand their operations due to increasing commodity prices and SWK's services become front of mind. Recent news is ticking all the boxes and adding huge momentum in the stock to catalyse a re-rating.
Reinstatement of dividend payment and share buyback program showing prudential capital management and a positive outlook relating to future financial position. This is a double-edged sword as management raised capital at 23c and bought back shares from 12.5c through to 17.5. By buying now, we have avoided this dilution although acknowledge this was not the best form of capital management. On the other hand, it does suggest management are flush with cash and happy to redistribute to existing shareholders before a possible sale; that is, we get paid to wait:
Contracts are being extended, new contracts being won, and guidance on FY21 figures. Management are highlighting clear intention to demerge and growth is providing EBITDA growth for a better sale price:
The Orexplore website (https://orexplore.com/the-orexplore-review/) has received increased attention with far more activity within their “Review Blog” section leading towards commercialisation. Posts are being made almost weekly increasing its awareness:
MSV as the strategic buyer for the drilling business has shown intent to inorganically expand their operations. Deepcore had an EV of ~$44m (excl. additional earnout payments), revenues of ~$50m p.a., and an EBITDA of ~$12m with approximately half the rig number of SWK. This purchase confirms the “fair value” multiple for a drilling business is ~4x EV/EBITDA, even for a significantly weaker private business due to utilisation, profitability, scale and contractual certainty.
https://preview.redd.it/jumpn58y2dh51.png?width=602&format=png&auto=webp&s=ad650e7b63b341e06ddd0a8bff88121249a03925 Valuation: Ok, so let’s turn our attention to the forward guidance and conservative estimates for SWK. SWK against mostly all metrics is very cheap. Management have forecast EBITDA to be ~$25mn in FY20. Although I think we can conservatively estimate this to grow significantly throughout FY21. The improvements to EBITDA will come from the following: (i) commercialisation of Orexplore = $0.5-1mn, (ii) ~$3-4mn in reaching steady state (20%) margin from the Pogo contract as costs normalise and backdated earnings flow through; (iii) ~$2mn in operating expense reduction during COVID-19; (iv) the $120m increase in the order book between 30 July and 14 August implies $120/5 = $24m p.a. at a slight discount to target margin of ~15% gives another $3.5mn EBITDA. Putting this all together FY21 EBITDA might be ~$35mn. In addition to the purchase of Deepcore, we can use the current valuation ratios of MSV and CAPD as a guide. Currently competitors trade between 3.5x (CAPD) and 4.5x (MSV) EV/EBITDA multiples. If we use 4x as a reasonable multiple on current EBITDA, this would imply an enterprise value of ~$100mn (or a 30% upside) whilst paying nothing for Orexplore. Upon conservative forward FY21 EBITDA figures, the enterprise value could easily reach ~$150 (or a 100% upside) again paying almost nothing (only $1mn / $35mn in EBITDA) for Orexplore. By way of reference, SWK with similar metrics in 2011/12 was trading at a ~100% premium (i.e. ~40c (market cap $90-110mn) whereas now it is ~$20 (market cap $50mn). A decade ago, it also did not have the same existing clientele and large-scale contract wins (see 3a above with a forward order book of $363mn (relative to current revenues of ~$150mn). The cherry on top of this investment is Orexplore, which we buy for free. None of the revenue and earnings multiples above include any real impact from Orexplore. On 14th August the commercial viability of Orexplore was been partially validated with their first contract win. Although its value is only $700,000 over 6 months this call option like payoff comes entirely for free. Further, the true profit margins of SWK has been hidden due to the losses incurred from Orexplore, which has to date cost $25mn in R&D (or equal to almost 10yrs of earnings), the amortisation of associated software development, and continued global expansion (Portugal and Europe before North America) each requiring initial costs prior to achieving target margins. Even better we get a first glimpse at how attractive Orexplore might be. Combining discussion in the latest conference call (https://www.openbriefing.com/OB/Swick-Mining-Services-Ltd/2020/2/25/Swick-HY20-Results-Conference-Call/3716.aspx 04:30 - 06:30) with the recent contract we can conclude the following: (i) 3 machines at Sandfire will generate ~$3.6mn in revenue covering approx. 50% of cash flow with nearly no operating expenses; (ii) $700,000 for 6months scanning 1500m of core per month implies ~$75/m (against an estimated $100m from guidance). As per guidance, if we assume Orexplore machines can scan ~$4m/hr ($300hr) and total costs may include one unskilled technician and minimal overheads ~$50mn this provides a gross margin of ~75% (or almost 4x undergrounding drilling). Due to the profitability of Orexplore, 15-20 operational machines on yearly contracts would provide greater earnings than SWK’s entire business. Hopefully the publicity of Orexplore at Sandfire can attract some attention, and in turn some additional contracts. Risks: No investment is without its risks, and for SWK they fall into: (i) capital mismanagement; and (ii) poor communication / delays. Firstly, the recent capital raise at ~23c followed by aggressive buybacks at ~12.5-14c-17c seems unwise. Although buying now avoids this dilution, it is unclear why excess capital was required if dividends and buybacks were announced shortly thereafter. Secondly, the share price has historically languished due to a lack of publicity and detail on the transformational Orexplore. It is likely that management were unwilling to oversell the Orexplore narrative before genuine contracts were won and the technology was established. Now that these are in place, hopefully the corporate restructure can take place and the upcoming strategic review can provide a clearer picture for the near term.
Hey guys, fairly new to the option trading game and want to know a bit more on how the value of far ITM and OTM LEAPs work compares to buying the stock on margin. PROS? CONS? Of course there is the risk of Vega in the options but how does Vega compare for OTM vs ITM? I feel like this is a bit of a safer way to play options but want to know everyone’s thoughts and options on it.
[Comic Books/Batman] A Death in the Family, or: How DC Comics Let a Phone Vote Kill Robin.
DC Comics has published literally thousands of Batman comics in the character's eighty-odd years of existence, but few are more infamous than A Death in the Family, when DC let fans decide whether Jason Todd, the second character to use the identity of Robin, lived or died. An apology in advance: many primary sources for this drama have been lost to the annals of history: this was the 1980s, the Internet wasn't really a thing yet, so fan discussion around comics mostly took place in Usenet newsgroups and comic book letter columns, both of which are very difficult to find archives of today. I've reconstructed the story as best as I can, but I wish I could find more quotes from fans at the time. Also, SPOILER WARNING. There are unmarked spoilers for Batman comics from the 1980s below this line. Don't say I didn't warn you.
Who was Jason Todd?
Jason Todd was a character introduced in 1983's Batman #357 by writer Gerry Conway and artist Don Newton and under the auspices of editor Len Wein, as a replacement for Dick Grayson as Robin. Grayson had outgrown the pixie boots and scaly shorts of the Robin identity, and graduated to his own identity as Nightwing, over in The New Teen Titans. But Conway felt that Batman still needed a Robin, so Todd was born:
Gerry Conway (writer, Batman and Detective Comics, 1981-1983): I always felt that Batman worked really well with a sidekick like Robin. My interest in the character was the version of Batman as a detective, the version of Batman as a guardian of Gotham. This was prior, I believe, to the deep-dive into the “dark knight” kind of concept of Batman, so, for that end, the idea of a younger sidekick who could bring out a little more levity in the character seemed useful. But Dick Grayson as a character had grown into a young adult and was integral to the Teen Titans series, and had his own life and his own storylines that were developing separately from Batman, and [he] couldn’t really play that secondary role that I was interested in exploring. 
Todd was introduced as the son of two acrobats who had been murdered by Batman's enemy Killer Croc, in a striking similarity to Dick Grayson's origin written forty years prior. Todd would officially become the new Robin in Batman #368, published February 1984, and would continue to go on adventures (written by Conway and then by Doug Moench) with Batman until 1986's Batman #400. During this period, he's probably best remembered for a. being involved in a custody battle between Batman and a vampire, and b. getting the drop on Mongul in the classic Superman story "For the Man Who Has Everything" by writer Alan Moore and artist Dave Gibbons. But then the Crisis happened, and everything changed for Jason.
You don't have a comic book company for almost fifty years without running into some hurdles along the way, especially where characters and continuity are concerned. In 1954, psychologist Frederick Wertham published Seduction of the Innocent, a book asserting that comic books were harming the children of the day, causing them to turn into delinquents. As a result, the bustling superhero genre of comics at the time slowed to a crawl, with most of DC's (then known as National Periodical Publications) characters, such as the Green Lantern and the Flash, ceasing publication and being replaced with comics about talking animals, romance stories, and giant alien monsters. Just a few short years later, in October 1956, creators Robert Kangher and Carmine Infantino would introduce a new version of the Flash in Showcase #4, and the Silver Age of comics had begun. Eventually, the Golden Age Flash was reintroduced, and it was established that the Silver Age characters resided on Earth-One, while the Golden Age characters were from Earth-Two. Everything was fine and dandy, until DC decided things had become too confusing and that they needed to kill their multiverse. In 1986, DC published one of the very first comic crossover events - Crisis on Infinite Earths, an earth-shattering story that pitted almost every hero in company history against the threat of the Anti-Monitor. The outcome was that all the characters and stories from Earth-One, Earth-Two, and several other alternate Earths that had appeared over the years were consolidated into a single, streamlined universe, and with that came changes for several other characters, Jason Todd among them.
The New Jason Todd
After Crisis, new blood was in the Batman editorial offices. Former Batman writer Denny O'Neil had taken over as editor of the Batman family of titles, and he had a different opinion on Robin than that of Wein and Conway before him.
O’Neil: There was a time right before I took over as Batman editor when he seemed to be much closer to a family man, much closer to a nice guy. He seemed to have a love life and he seemed to be very paternal towards Robin. My version is a lot nastier than that. He has a lot more edge to him. 
In keeping with the desire for a darker, edgier Dark Knight (it was the 1980s, after all), this version of Batman debuted without a Robin by his side. Dick Grayson was still Nightwing, but Jason Todd was nowhere to be seen. This darker interpretation of Batman was only solidified once Frank Miller put his touch on the franchise with "Batman: Year One" in Batman #404-407, and the standalone graphic novel The Dark Knight Returns, the impact of which cannot be understated.
The Dark Knight Returns was a pivotal moment in the formation of what we would consider a recognizably “modern” incarnation of Batman, someone who is brooding and dark, a loner who isolates himself from society to obsessively carry out his one man crusade by any brutally violent means necessary. It was also an important milestone for comics a medium when it landed on top of the Young Adult Hardcover New York Times bestsellers list—a feat it only qualified for thanks to its release as a trade paperback in bookstores. For the first time, mainstream audiences were zeroing in on Batman, and not because of a popular TV show or serialized movies, but because of a comic book. 2
Immediately following "Year One," O'Neil asked writer Max Allan Collins to reintroduce Jason Todd as Robin into the continuity, in a storyline titled "Batman: The New Adventures" starting in Batman #408. The new Todd was a delinquent orphan, caught by Batman when he tried to steal the tires from the Batmobile and taken in and trained to be the new Robin. At first, the change was controversial among the fandom, especially given the wildly contrasting takes between Mike W. Barr's softer portrayal of the Dynamic Duo in Detective Comics and the harsher portrayal from creators such as Collins, Jim Aparo, and Jim Starlin (best known now as the creator of Thanos) in Batman. But nobody was clamoring for his death yet, and the intensity of debates around the new Jason Todd, fought out through comic book letter columns, were milder in comparison to those around whether there should be a yellow oval on the Batsuit or not.  Over the next few years, fan hatred for Jason began to grow, as the new incarnation of the character was not only a replacement for a highly beloved character, but also had a lot of anger issues to sort through. But then came the boiling point - Batman #424, written by Starlin and pencilled by Mark Bright, released October 1988. In that story, Todd confronts Felipe, son of a South American diplomat who was heavily involved in the cocaine trade. Batman reasons that, because Felipe has diplomatic immunity, there's nothing he can do to stop him, but Todd thinks otherwise. Felipe falls from a skyscraper to his death, leaving Batman to wonder: "did Felipe fall... Or was he pushed?" (Starlin, for what it was worth, hated Todd from the get-go, and specifically wrote this story to play to the controversy:
Starlin: In the one Batman issue I wrote with Robin featured, I had him do something underhanded, as I recall. Denny had told me that the character was very unpopular with fans, so I decided to play on that dislike. 
He had also tried to have Todd killed beforehand, of AIDS:
Well, I always thought that the whole idea of a kid side-kick was sheer insanity. So when I started writing Batman, I immediately started lobbying to kill off Robin. At one point DC had this AIDS book they wanted to do. They sent around memos to everybody saying “What character do you think we should, you know, have him get AIDS and do this dramatic thing” and they never ended up doing this project. I kept sending them things saying “Oh, do Robin! Do Robin!” And Denny O’Neill said “We can’t kill Robin off”. 
A Death in the Family
By 1988, though, O'Neil had changed his tune. Alan Moore and Brian Bolland's The Killing Joke had left longtime supporting character Batgirl crippled and confined to a wheelchair, to major praise from fans and critics alike, and there was blood in the water. Sales for Batman were at levels not seen for over a decade thanks to the works of Miller and Moore, Tim Burton's Batman feature film was on the horizon, far removed from the camp aesthetic of Adam West and Burt Ward and entirely Robin-free, and fan hatred for Todd was at an all-time high.
Jenette Kahn (publisher, DC Comics, 1976-1989; president, 1981-2003; editor-in-chief, 1989-2003) : Many of our readers were unhappy with Jason Todd. We weren’t certain why or how widespread the discontent was, but we wanted to address it. Rather than autocratically write Jason out of the comics and bring in a new Robin, we thought we’d let our readers weigh in. 
O'Neil and his team of editors brainstormed how they could remove Jason from the story, and the answer was clear: kill him, just as Starlin had suggested time and time again. Recalling the success of a 1982 Saturday Night Livesketch in which Eddie Murphy let viewers vote via phone on whether he would cook or spare a live lobester, O'Neil proposed a similar system to Kahn, who loved the idea. So, A Death in the Family began in Batman #426, written by Starlin and illustrated by Jim Aparo. When Jason receives word that his missing mother is alive, he follows a set of leads across the world to find her, only to discover that she was being blackmailed by the Joker. Jason's mother hands him over to the Clown Prince of Crime, and that's how Batman #427 ends. On the back cover of that issue, DC ran a full-page ad, proclaiming: "Robin Will Die Because the Joker Wants Revenge, But You Can Prevent It With a Telephone Call" and giving two 1-900 numbers: one to call to save Jason, and one to kill him. Two versions of issue #428 were written and drawn. One where Jason lived, and another, where he died. Both went into a drawer in O'Neil's desk, and the fans would choose which one would ever see the light of day. The fans went rabid. One letter, published in Batman #428, read as follows:
"Dear Denny, I heard some of what you are planning for "A Death In the Family" story line, including the phone-in number wrinkle, and I don't want to take any chances whatsoever. Kill him. Your pal, Rich Kreiner."
From 9:00 in the morning on Thursday, September 15, 1988 until 8:00 in the evening on Friday, September 16, fans could call in to either of the two numbers for fifty cents a call and cast their vote. In the end, the votes were tallied: 5,271 voted for Todd to survive, and 5,343 voted for him to die. By a margin of 72 votes, Robin died in the pages of Batman #428, beaten to death with a crowbar by the Joker. The image of Batman cradling Robin's dead body became immediately iconic.
Fan reaction to the story was mixed, despite the seeming fervor for Todd's death and the blood that was on their hands. The letters pages for Batman #430 (1, 2) show a mixture of celebration over Jason's death, remorse over individuals' decisions to vote for death, and hope that Robin's absence would lead to more mature Batman stories in the future. However, every issue of A Death in the Family was a best-seller, and a collected edition was rushed out in early December of 1988, only a week after the final issue in the arc was released to stores. But now that the fan feeding frenzy was (mostly) over, the media feeding frenzy had begun. You don't just kill Robin and get away with it without media attention. USA Today and Reuters ran articles on the story, and DC was besieged with interview requests from radio and TV stations.
O’Neil: I spent three days doing nothing but talking on the radio. I thought it would get us some ink here and there and maybe a couple of radio interviews. I had no idea—nor did anyone else—it would have the effect it did. Peggy [May], our publicity person, finally just said, “Stop, no more, we can’t do anymore,” or I would probably still be talking. She also nixed any television appearances. At the time, I wondered about that but now I am very glad she did, because there was a nasty backlash and I came to be very grateful that people could not associate my face with the guy who killed Robin. 
Internally at DC, there were suspicions that the vote had been rigged in some fashion.
O'Neil: "I heard it was one guy, who programmed his computer to dial the thumbs down number every ninety seconds for eight hours, who made the difference." 
But regardless of whether it was or not, Jason Todd was dead, and he would remain dead for as long as O'Neil stayed at DC - long enough for the phrase to be coined: "nobody in comics stays dead except for Uncle Ben, Bucky, and Jason Todd." But he wouldn't remain dead forever.
Jason would be succeeded by a new Robin, less than a year after his death. In a crossover storyline between Batman and New Titans written by Marv Wolfman and illustrated by George Perez and Jim Aparo, entitled "A Lonely Place of Dying", the character of Tim Drake would be introduced. Unlike Todd and Grayson before him, Drake would challenge the assumptions made about the character of Robin - he figured out Batman's secret identity on his own, and deduced that Batman needed a Robin by his side, to ensure he wouldn't take unneeded risks. Gone were the short pants of yesteryear - Drake wore a full-body suit with an armored cape, and was more of a detective than a fighter. He debuted to mixed reactions, although fans soon grew to love him under the pen of Chuck Dixon, who would be one of the major architects of Batman in the 1990s. Todd would get a second chance at life seventeen years later. In 2005, writer Judd Winick wrote the storyline "Under the Hood," published in Batman #635-641, 645-650, and Annual #25. There, it's revealed that Todd returned to life thanks to an alternate version of Superboy punching reality (it's comics, don't ask) and the aid of R'as al Ghul's Lazarus Pits, and donned the identity of the crime lord the Red Hood in his quest for revenge against the Joker. Todd, as the Red Hood, persists as a popular character today, a lasting symbol of Batman's failure, as he operates as a pragmatic vigilante, willing to take risks Batman isn't. More recently, in July 2020, DC announced a Death in the Family animated interactive feature film in the vein of Black Mirror's "Bandersnatch" - again, viewers can choose whether Todd lives or dies, among other options. Edit: fixed a typo.
Intro: Bought into M1 Plus from a $60/yr Promotion 2 months ago. I had an investment account already, and even one of the first spend accounts. I had declined the offer for M1 Plus at $125/yr. This is a first review of M1 Plus after two months of use and a bit of a dive into the value of its features from a financial and user experience point of view. Value: This is a pretty simple one. Do the math. The interest vs. your other checking account multiplied by the amount of cash you’d be keeping in there for M1 Spend. If you’re borrowing from M1 too, the 1.5% difference (or whatever difference there is between M1 Borrow and your next best offer) multiplied by the amount of money you’d like to borrow. If all these add up to greater than whatever annual fee is offered, go for it. Otherwise, it’d be a very expensive metal card. But if 4 waived ATM fees go a long way to save you money, that should be worth considering too, however, there are tons of cards and products that’ll waive said fees, some even for unlimited transactions and no upfront cost. Just because M1 is offering this benefit as part of a premium package doesn’t mean it’s impossible to find for free somewhere else. XP: It is a great experience. I constantly invest lumps of $500 into my portfolio all the time. It’s quick, easy, and immediately fulfilling. Not that other brokerages don’t do this. But M1 is clearly focused on showing you your long term progress on your investment goals. It uses a money weighted return formula so that you know how much your capital has been making you to easily compare to the return of bank accounts and investments. There’s a reason their product is called “Invest” and not “Trade”, more on that later. But this means it’s primarily suited for this purpose. During the Covid crash, I took to Robinhood to place my Put Options on the S&P because high frequency derivatives trading and M1 basically speak different languages. All this to say, it feels amazing to watch your investments accounts slowly creep up as you continue to dollar cost average into the market, but this has some drawbacks. Pies. While fun and easy to build, mix and match, they are not a very common mechanic to implement on amateur portfolios. Selling stocks can be quite the process on M1, and the platform will try its darnest to discourage you from making any but the most basic adjustments to your portfolio. Its really only suited for the “set it and forget it” mindset, which is not to say you can’t mess around with your money as you please, but it’s just so perfect for investing and watching your money grow with a long time horizon. The plots will show you your progress and encourage you to keep a regular deposit schedule. But try trading into and out of a stock, or a set amount of shares, or even thinking about playing with derivatives and other financial instruments: slim pickings. The numbers make a lot of sense, too. I’ve been investing for about 5 years now, and my latest craze has been leverage. I’ve read about how the optimal leverage ratio for the S&P on average was 2.0 or 100% levered up, and looked up the historical comparisons to corroborate. Shopping around for margin accounts and available capital, it’s tough to beat the 2% rates at the moment. I’ve been slowly levering up during the latest market rally to great effect and the low interest really pumps up those numbers. Having this much cheap capital, not just for leverage, but also for life is worth more than just the time value of money. I would make the point that this is made even more valuable by having all your financial services on the same platform, as you really get to do with your money as you please and move it around to withdraw it to your hearts content. My real issue was with Spend. Not a problem with the product but myself, in trying to justify the annual fee. I weighed how much money it would make sense to keep in Spend as opposed to an online savings account. To keep cash a couple of months ago, it made more sense to opt for ally or marcus as they were offering close to 1.55% on cash. But as their rates have plummeted, getting 1.0% on a CHECKING account has been an absolute godsend in this crazy economy. This account works for just about anything with the notable exception of checks... in a checking account which I suspect is the reason for the “Spend” branding the product was marketed with. When it’s hard to even find 1% on a savings account, a 1% APY on checking is no-worries approach to cash investment. Ultimately, having all of these balances displayed together on the Transfers tab is huge in terms of consumer experience. This, however, should not be a replacement for true “Dashboard” that could show an overview of all your money moves and account balances. Ideas: M1 Trade. Admittedly, I do see how this can be very contrary to the philosophy, product and experience that M1 has worked to create. That being said, thinking that your customer will always prefer to have their money invested into automatically allocated pies is a little short-sighted. Opening a much more DIY Trading product on M1 would of course have them incur tons of costs in handling and verifying transactions of all the individual financial, but many places already offer such services for free, some are even profitable at it. An M1 Trade product would also need integrating the Invest product because regardless of what you’re doing on the platform, you still consider your money your investments and want to see it all together. Pies and individual Buys would have to play nice together, and that does sound like a difficult endeavor. I keep a couple of accounts with different mixtures of my pies for all my purposes. I also handle the investments for a few of my family members, which will become relevant shortly. You can obviously set up as many accounts as you wish and move money into them as you desire, but this can get you into some warmer water. If two of your pies hold most the same securities and you just want to have a different pie for a different account, you’ll have to call up to pause trading so that your pies have a chance to get to know each other and not force you to sell and buy right back into the same assets just to incur the taxes. It’s a bit of a hassle, and I would argue, on purpose. For Pies themselves, I often find myself wanting to make small tweaks to pies but then quickly let it go as removing slices would automatically trigger a massive sell off that incurs taxes. From a conversation with tech support, I gathered that the best way to do this was simply pause trading on your account, and change the pie you want all your money to go into. Editing pies is fine and easy, but completely swapping a pie for another one led me to believe that it would sell put of all my holdings even if the old and new pie had many of those same holdings. If this is me being stupid, good, if it’s a gap in features, I hope M1 lets you simply swap a pie for any other and gives you the option either sell everything, sell only what is 0 in the second pie, or sell nothing and simply continue aiming for the allocation of the new pie without touching your previous investments. Lastly, an iPad app. I’m a big fan of the iPad and the iPad Pro in particular. I’ve found myself using it far more than my laptop which is now strictly reserved for long work sessions (I write and edit for a YouTube Channel) and watching content in groups of people (15” MBP Speakers are the stuff of legend). But for anything else, I subconsciously grab the iPad. It’s annoying to have the website be the best M1 experience on the iPad. I understand that making a compelling iPad investing app is its own mountain to climb, but a lot of the Mobile app’s functionality can be ported over without too much of a hassle. Charles Schwab has an iPad app based 99% on the iPhone app that still performs all the same functions, just on the bigger screen, which is the whole point of the iPad in the first place. While it’s not a top shelf iPad app (there are only a select few) the Schwab app is lovely and I’m begging M1 for anything that doesn’t force me to use my iPad in portrait mode to use a blown up iPhone app. Again, this app doesn’t have to be a world beater, just a decent looking and bigger version of the iPhone app that would go a long way to boost the M1 customer experience. Closing Remarks: Obligatory YMMV disclosure: it’s about the math, I won’t bore you with my own, but I was just over the line when it made sense for me to opt into the $60/yr promo. That being said, M1’s value has been a lot about the experience. The future of finance is free. No brokerage should be making money on transaction commissions or administrative fees, it’s a relic from the before times when you needed people who knew people on wall street to do your trading. At this point its not even worth any perceived convenience. The clever ones reading this will point out that, while true, many brokerages already offer a wide variety of free services. Many of them, even, that M1 doesn’t offer. The true spirit of this review is to express my personal opinion on the value of M1 Plus and how the customer experience is its edge in the ebrokerage market. Rates are competitive, but it is a brand new way to consider finance and its role in your life and society. TL;DR Spend is pretty competitive for a checking account, and as long as you’re not using checks too often, its a no brainer for anyone with close to $10,000 in cash just sitting somewhere. Invest is beautiful, but the free version is exactly as good, more windows means very little with the limited trading you’re allowed to do anyway. Borrow is brilliant, hella flexible and competitive rates. 8/10 Would recommend to a friend.
Options trading is already complex enough but when you start looking at margin trading with options you are adding a whole new dynamic to it. However, once you have a solid understanding on how options work with margin then you will be in a position to execute strategies that have a statistical advantage like credit spreads and selling calls and puts. The day trading margin requirements can give you a leverage of 100:1 and overnight margins can use leverage as high as 25:1 and as low as 6:1. Futures and options are instruments that can actually be profitably traded. Option Levels 1 and 2 are reserved for nonmargin accounts. These are basic but still useful, strategies such as covered calls, cash-secured puts, long calls and long puts. When you are upgraded to Option Levels 3 and 4, you are now trading on margin and moving into the more advanced options strategies. Options brokers define five trading levels based on the risk of the transaction type. Levels three to five require a margin account because you may lose more money than you invest in the trade. A margin account allows you to use all of the funds in your account as collateral for such trades. Options trading is not stock trading. For the educated option trader, that is a good thing because option strategies can be designed to profit from a wide variety of stock market outcomes. And that can be accomplished with limited risk. The Balance does not provide tax, investment, or financial services and advice. The information is presented
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