Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Stocks Higher into Final Hour on Rising Economic Optimism

BOTTOM LINE: The Portfolio is slightly higher into the final hour on gains in my Medical longs and Retail longs. I covered some of my (EEM) short and added to my (IWM)/(QQQQ) hedge today, thus leaving the Portfolio 75% net long. The tone of the market is slightly positive as the advance/decline line is higher, sector performance is mixed and volume is around average. NYSE short interest rose .62% from mid-December through mid-January to 9.68 billion shares. Short interest is now just off the all-time high of 9.74 billion shares set in October of last year. I suspect we will see another new record high next month.

Here are the 10 NYSE stocks with the largest percentage increase in short interest relative to their floats from mid-December through mid-January:

1. RGC +33.5%
2. NMX +23.7%
3. HEI +21.6%
4. EVR +11.3%
5. TOA +8.1%
6. CAO +6.9%
7. CCO +6.4%
8. NYX +6.2%
9. LNN +6.2%
10. WLK +6.2%

I expect US stocks to trade mixed into the close from current levels as rising oil prices and long-term rates offsets more economic optimism.

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