Posts From Brad Tompkins

Brad Tompkins
Brad Tompkins has been actively investing for over 20 years. He has an Economics degree and a professional background in accounting, business management, and computer programming. Brad currently trades futures markets concentrating on equity indices, the energy complex and treasury bonds. He also heavily trades in the option markets to generate short term income and manage long term risk. Brad is a technical trader with an eye towards big picture macro fundamentals. He enjoys reading and discussing all things related to markets, financial history and economics.
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Apple Options Trading Idea into Earnings

By Brad Tompkins Since we’ve now entered another earnings reporting season, I thought I’d take the time to layout a nice options cash flow trade. The basic strategy is a Put Spread Collar which pairs a covered call with a protective put spread. For this exercise, we’ll look at an Apple options trading idea. The goal is to take advantage of the extremely high volatility leading into the earnings announcements by selling

Nasdaq 100 Symmetry: Potential for Several More Weeks Consolidation

By Brad Tompkins Back in September, I wrote a piece detailing the difficult trading period we experienced following the sharp drop last summer (Read: Technical Patterning Like Trying to Hit a Change Up).  Well, it’s déjà vu!  The current Nasdaq 100 index chart is forming an eerily similar pattern with the mirror image drop, then consolidation while the 20 day moving average curls back up to retake the 100 day moving

EEM Chart Note: Emerging Markets Breaking Out

By Brad Tompkins It has been a month since we last visited the iShares MSCI Emerging Markets (EEM) chart (previous article) just as it broke lower to retest the 200 day Exponential Moving Average (EMA). As it turned out, it was a short-lived breakdown that coiled enough energy to propel the index on an impressive jump higher. In fact, the momentum from the move has pushed the index above the top

IWM Chart Note: Nearing Important Price Zone

By Brad Tompkins I was running through some charts late yesterday and noticed that IWM (Russell 2000 iShares) is nearing an important support/resistance confluence zone. The reaction over the next week or two will tell us more about whether or not we’ll see a year-end rally. So keep an eye on the small caps. See chart below. ————————————— Twitter:  @BBTompkins and @seeitmarket     Facebook:  See It Market No position in any of the securities mentioned at

Emerging Markets (EEM) At Key Price Level

By Brad Tompkins The Emerging Markets ETF (EEM) closed at a pivotal price level yesterday,  just below its 2 month range and between the 50 and 200 Day Exponential Moving Averages (EMAs). This area around 40.50 is an important confluence of support. With this in mind, it wouldn’t surprise me to see a fake out jab lower (to fill the early September gap at $39.75) followed by a very important attempt

Forecasting the S&P 500 from GDP Data and What It’s Telling Us Now

By Brad Tompkins Last week the commerce department released their estimate of 2012 third quarter’s GDP growth rate. The preliminary 2.0% growth was better than 1.3% the previous quarter (revised down from 1.7%), but not much to celebrate. We’ve also now heard a little over half of the earnings announcements for the quarter. Ongoing projected GAAP earnings for the S&P500 is still on track for $90 per share for the year

Media Market Forecast: Positively Sunny with Chance of Torrential Downpour

By Brad Tompkins If you are trying to determine the current market disposition through popular financial media, you are hearing a great deal of contradiction. For instance, if twitter streams were able to produce a market weather forecast it would be something along the lines of “Positively Sunny with a Chance of Torrential Downpour.” The voices coming from the news and opinion feeds are definitely not in synchronized harmony and volume

Options Basics: Using a Call Spread to Fine-Tune Risk/Reward

By Brad Tompkins So far in this series we’ve introduced option fundamentals along with a speculative bullish call trade, explored protective put options as a way to hedge portfolio positions, and saw how writing covered calls can be used for protection and income. Buying calls or puts are great ways to establish very bullish or very bearish positions while strictly defining risk and limiting capital outlays. On the other hand, selling

Overbought or Not Overbought: Does It Really Matter?

By Brad Tompkins There has been plenty of media coverage recently related to whether the stock market is overbought or not. It is interesting and certainly entertaining.  But is it relevant information we need to know as traders? Let’s frame the discussion with two points: ·         How do you measure overbought or oversold? ·         What is the appropriate trading reaction? The chart below shows the S&P 500 index with a couple common ways

Nasdaq 100 Technical Patterning Like Trying to Hit a Change Up

By Brad Tompkins Most technical traders have a favorite chart pattern that is the trading equivalent to a “fat pitch” in baseball. We see it setup and then swing for the fences. This 4 month Nasdaq 100 Index (NDX) day chart below displays a repeating pattern that is the opposite of a favorite pitch. It is more like a wicked change-up that results in an embarrassing whiff as the batter is