Happy St Paddy’s Day (or as Charlie Sheen calls it, Thursday)! Complete with 5 Jokes.

Let’s get business out of the way. There are enough really smart people analyzing the goings on in Japan, as well some not so smart people, that we can’t and anything intelligent to that conversation. So please say a prayer with us for our brothers and sisters in Japan.

With regards to market structure, we’d like to point out a two pieces for you to add to your Market Structure Scrapbooks.

–       First we share with you this Reuters article about how the ICE exchange is defending high frequency trading in its house. ICE’s president, Tom Farley is tired of their “getting blamed for everything under the sun”, as he sees them minimizing volatility, and not increasing it. Please let us remind you that ICE is a highly derivatives oriented exchange; they trade options, futures, and credit default swaps. Which is where the high frequency puck is heading.

–       Second, we share with you Nina Mehta’s (Bloomberg) article yesterday on the CBOE’s latest expansion of its VIX products. The CBOE is introducing options based on its VIX methodology, but on individual indexes based on crude oil, as well as the stocks: AAPL, IBM, GOOG, AMZN, and GS. Yes these are new tools that will help them generate new revenues, as they are new things/games that their stat-arb HFT customers can play, as well as folks from home. Remind me to not be one of the folks from home.

Ok, now that those articles are out of the way, and you are all thoroughly stressed out from this week’s market action to date, we would like to share with you our Top Five St Paddy’s Day Jokes!

5) Finnegan’s wife had been killed in an accident and the police were questioning him. “Did she say anything before she died?” asked the sergeant. “She spoke without interruption for about forty years,” said Finnegan.

4) The Irish attempt on Mount Everest was a valiant effort, but it failed: They ran out of scaffolding.

3) O’Connell was staggering home with a pint of booze in his back pocket when he slipped and fell heavily. Struggling to his feet, he felt something wet running down his leg.  “Please, God,” he implored, “let it be blood!” 

2) Concerning bagpipes: The Irish invented them and gave them to the Scots as a joke, and the Scots haven’t seen the joke yet.

1) An Irishman, Englishman and a German are caught in Saudi Arabia drinking. “Under Saudi law you are sentenced to 30 lashes then deported. Before you begin you are entitled to something on you back, what would you like?” said the prison guard to the Englishman just before lashing him. The English man, being a bit of a cricket fan, asked for linseed oil. When they lashed him on a post and let him go to catch his flight back to London he groaned and crawled to the airport. Next came the German. “Under Saudi law you are sentenced to 30 lashes then deported. Before you begin you are entitled to something on you back, what would you like?” said the prison guard “Nothing” said the German and, after receiving his lashes spat on the ground, called the prison guards Schisers and started off towards the airport. The guards then came to the Irishman. “Under Saudi law you are sentenced to 30 lashes then deported. Before you begin you are entitled to something on you back, what would you like?” “Oh”, replied the Irishman, “I’ll take the German”.


Where we left off 4:00pm EST:

INDU              11,313.30                                -242.12

SPX                 1,256.88                                  -24.99

CCMP             2,616.82                                  -50.51

Futures now at 7:00 am EST:

DJA                             +60 

SPA                             +11.70

NDA                           +17.25

Key Data out today:


08:30:              CPI (expected 0.4%)

08:30:              Initial Jobless Claims (expecting 388,000)

08:30:              Continuing Claims (expecting 3,750,000)

08:30:              Initial Jobless Claims (expecting 388,000)

09:15:              Capacity Utilization (expecting 76.5%)

09:15:              Industrial Production (expecting 0.6%)

10:00:              Leading Indicators

10:00:              Philly Fed


Since the prior close, some key stories:


–       Futures rise on G-7 Speculation.

–       Wow USDJPY.

–       Helicopters, Water Cannons Troops Enlisted to Prevent Radiation (Bloomberg)

–       Bahrain cracking down on protesters.

–       So much ECON numbers this am… but folks are really watching for Japan Headlines.

–       Guess guides lower.

–       Herman Miller up on higher NA sales.

–       ON Semiconductor says Japan Quake can hurt revenue.

–       SANM cuts outlook, COO resigns. Rut Roh.

–       Ashland CEO to have colon surgery.

–       BofA, Citi, Barclays receive LIBOR subpoenas.

–       Groupon IPO Valuation $25 billion? That’s a lot of coupons.

–      Hoops!





After the Close: HIS, LDK, NKE, SEAC, SCVL


Significant Movers This Morning:

SWC +5%, LEAP +4%, EWJ +3.5%, COCO +3.5%, ATPG +3%, LVLT +3%, SANM -16%, KWK -9%, REGN -9%, ATU -9%, NRP -6%, SHAW -4%, CPN -4%, ETFC -4%