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Trading in a Treacherous Market

NASDAQ turns positive midday. Cisco and Intel leading the tech advance off the bottoms. Other big names outside the NASDAQ have also turned green: American Express, Goldman Sachs, IBM and Caterpillar.

Symbol
Price
 
Change
%Change
CSCO
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GS
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IBM
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INTC
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This highlights a real problem traders have: this is a treacherous market to trade in. Traders have been heavily shorting the market all morning, but the Dow has cut its losses in half, moving from down 128 to down only 50.

In addition to the last day of a big up quarter, traders are having to deal with the uncertainties of the market in September and October, notoriously difficult months.

"It's like trying to trade in the Bermuda Triangle," one trader told me this morning.
"The Howlies are out!"

Was the Chicago PMI leaked? It depends on what you mean by "leaked." Several traders furiously demanded to know why the markets had dropped several minutes before the Chicago PMI came out at 9:45. Many insisted that the information had been leaked.

Go to the Web site of Kingsbury International, the organization that compiles the Chicago PMI and you will see this blurb: "Your subscription gives you access to this market-moving data 3 minutes before public release in addition to funding the business survey."

So for $200 a month you can get access to the info at 9:42 AM instead of 9:45 AM. Coincidentally, this was almost exactly the time the markets began dropping.

Mystery solved.

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