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Halftime Report: Commodities Break Free Of Dollar Stranglehold?

The S&P edged higher on Wednesday despite a stronger dollar dragging down natural resource names.

Will commodities ever break free and rally on demand?

Instant Insights with the Fast Money traders

I don’t believe in the commodity rally; 60% of the world’s GDP is slowing down, says Brian Kelly of Kanundrum. Copper stocks are at 5-year highs. For me, there’s plenty of supply to meet demand. I'd shortFCX and copper .

I believe that the demand for commodities in China is alive, counters Tim Seymour. But it’s for ore, steel and coking coal. Copper, however, worries me.

I think being short copper is a great trade, adds Joe Terranova. But as far as I’m concerned the move in commodities broadly is all about the unwind of the carry trade.

Speaking of the carry trade, I believe that Europe’s economies are continuing to weaken, and the dollar should continue to strengthen, adds veteran trader Gary Kamninsky. As a result I'm a seller of Euopean banks.

If you believe the dollar is going higher because of currency concerns, then I’d also be a buyer of gold , adds Tim Seymour.

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TOPPING THE TAPE: CITI

One shining star in Wednesday’s market is Citigroup, which traded higher after 13F filings revealed some of the Street’s biggest names established new positions in the stock last quarter; and that includes Jim Paulson, George Soros and Eddie Lampert.

Q4 HOLDINGS: CITIGROUP

ADDED TOTAL

GEORGE SOROS 95MLN 95MLN

JOHN PAULSON 507MLN 807MLN

EDDIE LAMPERT 31MLN 50MLN

What's the trade?

The move makes be very bullish, says Brian Kelly, as long as Citi stays above $3.15, I'm interested.

As far as I’m concerned, everyone of these guys is looking at Citi as an option and not as a fundamental investment, counters Gary Kaminksy.

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ANALYZE THIS: PRICE CHECK ON DUANE READE

Investors appear to be cheering Walgreen’s $1.1 billion dollar purchase of Duane Reade sending shares higher by mid-day.

What must you know?

There were so many players involved, it confirms my thesis that the M&A business is starved for deals, says Gary Kaminsky.

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MARKET MOVER: BROKER BOOM

You might call this Wall Street's untold growth story. Cantor Fitzgerald has expanded its capital markets business over last several years; Cantor continues to grow its prime brokerage business as well as its investment banking units.

And Cantor is one of the few investment banks that did not take TARP money.

We spoke with CEO Howard Lutnick about some of the most pressing issues facing financials; including the problems in Greece.

How does he see it playing out? Watch the video now and find out!

















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BIG MONEY: COMCAST

At around 10:50am Wednesday, a block of 250,000 shares of Comcast changed hands at $15.68 per share. This after the cable company was added to Citi's 'top picks live' yesterday with a $19 price target.

Should you follow the money?

I like the chart and the volume spike, says Brian Kelly. Now it's time to look at the fundamentals and see if I can get excited.

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TAKE YOUR POSITION: H-P

Only a short time left until H-P releases earnings after the bell Wednesday. How should you trade it?

I think the stock is still a buy, says Joe Terranova. I think it gets to $52.95. But personally I’m playing it through Dell . I believe the Street is underestimating the value there.

In the space, I’m concerned about FX headwinds on next quarters’ numbers, adds Tim Seymour. A great deal of revenue comes from overseas.

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ANALYZE THIS: STREET BETS BIG ON HOUSING

A couple of Wall Street upgrades gave housing stocks including Home Depot a boost on Wednesday. But contrarian investor Bill Fleckenstein says the move higher isn’t warranted.

Find out why he remains so bearish on the homebuilders trade. Watch the video now!














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EAR TO THE WALL: OIL

Oil appeared to shake off fears of a stronger dollar and traded around $80 on Wednesday. What must you know about this rise?

Don't underestimate the geo-political concerns in the Mideast, says Joe Terranova. Big investors are positioning for $90 oil.

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CALL THE CLOSE

Brian Kelly: I’m not a buyer

Tim Seymour: The euro will be weak but it’s not a disaster

Joe Terranova; I’m a buyer.

Gary Kaminsky: I’m expect the dollar gets stronger and hit hits US stocks. I’d sell European banks


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Trader disclosure: On February 17th, 2010, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s Fast Money were owned by the Fast Money traders; Seymour Owns (AAPL), (BAC), (INTC), (LVS), (MPEL), (AAPL), (BAC), (INTC), (MSFT), (CHL); Terranova Owns (JPM) (AAPL), (GOOG), (RIMM), (JPM), (QCOM), (IBM), (MSFT), (DELL), (EMC), (PALM), Crude Oil Futures; Terranova Is Long Dec. 2010 Oil Futures; Terranova Is Long Dec. 2011 Oil Futures; Grasso Owns (ABK), (AAPL), (ASTM), (BAC), (BGP), (C), (COST), (CSCO), (FAZ), (PFE), (PRST), (WMT), (V); Kelly Owns (ELX) Calls; Kelly Owns (QLGC) Calls; Finerman's Firm Is Short (IJR), (SPY), (MDY), (IWM), (SPY), (USO); Finerman's Firm Is Short SPX Puts; Finerman Owns (AAPL); Finerman's Firm Owns (BAC), (BAC) Leaps; Finerman Owns (BAC) Preferred, (BAC); Finerman's Firm And Finerman Own (GOOG); Fimeran's Firm Owns (IBM), (TGT); Finerman's Firm And Fnerman Own (WFC) Preferred; Finerman's Firm Owns (BDX); Finerman's Firm Owns (BSX); Finerman's Firm And Finerman Own (GGWPQ); Finerman's Firm And Finerman Own (JPM); Finerman's Firm Owns (WMT)

For Joe Terranova
Terranova Works For (VRTS)
Terranova Is Chief Market Strategist Of Virtus Investment Partners, Ltd.
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (CLB)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (DLR)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (EXR)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (IGE)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLY)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (DBV)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLP)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLB)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLI)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (SKT)

For Steve Grasso
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (AIZ)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (ABX)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (CUBA)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (GERN)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (GLG)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (HSPO)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (NWS.A)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (NXST)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (NYX)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (PDE)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (PRST)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (RDC)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (ROK)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (TLM)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (TOL)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (XRX)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Own (SDS)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Are Short (QQQQ)
Stuart Frankel & Co. Inc And Its Partners Are Short (CL)

For Brian Kelly
Kanundrum Capital Owns (BRCM)
Kanundrum Capital Owns (ELX)
Kanundrum Capital Owns (QLGC)
Kanundrum Capital Owns (QCOM)
Kanundrum Capital Owns (VMW)
Kanundrum Capital Owns (HOV), (PHM), (TOL), (C), (JPM), (EWP), (NBG)
Kanundrum Capital Is Long USDJPY, USDCHF, USDSGD
Kanundrum Capital Is Short (EWY), (TAO), (FCX), Copper

For Bill Fleckenstein
Fleckenstein Owns Gold

CNBC.com with wires

Symbol
Price
 
Change
%Change
S&P 500
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C
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CMCSA
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4331
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FCX
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HD
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HPQ
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WAG
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