Market Watchers

Added on by C. Maoxian.

From December 18, 1954 ... by E.B. White:

ON OUR WAY TO WORK in the morning, we sometimes pass one of those temples where men sit meditating with their hats on, watching ticker reports projected on a screen. We stopped for a moment the other morning to kibitz: through the window we watched the watchers at their watching. The ticker was bringing news of cloudy conditions in the Middle West; rain was expected within forty-eight hours and might have an effect on winter wheat. The watchers, some of whom looked as though they were merely taking refuge indoors from a rain of their own making, absorbed this piece of information solemnly. One man, nursing a cigar, closed his eyes as he tried to conjure up the significance of the distant rain on distant wheat. What a strange little band of tardy pioneers they seemed, sifting the wind that failed to touch their cheeks as it blew across prairies they would never see! How sad they looked, these early-morning waifs — no parents, no homes, only a lighted screen on which prices rose and fell amid tidings of great gain!

LifeLock Drop, 1 Minute View

Added on by C. Maoxian.

First news I saw was CNBC at 14:13 ... scanner may have picked things up at 13:57 or 14:03 at the latest ... hard to say if you could find a borrow and get short ... always interested in talking with traders who caught this in real time. 

CF Industries Pop, 1 Minute View

Added on by C. Maoxian.

This I did see in real-time but too groggy to do anything about it ... hard to see if it would have been a good play ... when it came back down in the 13:20s to probe around the re-open low, that may have been a place you'd get shaken out ... not that wonderful unless you were one of the early birds in below $65 ... can't tell how many trades went off down there without a tick chart.

Crick to enrarge

Macy's Pop, 2 Minute View

Added on by C. Maoxian.

Late to post this, thus the two minute chart ... some "activist" said Macy's worth $125 a share ... quick day traders could have made at least $3 off of this pop, scanner willing. Can't see where the stop would go without a tick chart, but I assume the risk reward would have been decent in the end.

Twitter Pop, 1 Minute View

Added on by C. Maoxian.

Takeover story posted to fake Bloomberg site ... obviously the perpetrators loaded up on call options in advance and dumped them into the "news" ... I have no idea how people think they can get away with this ... it's so easy to track the purchases back to the broker and the individual accounts, crazy, they will all be caught in short order.

Anyway, as a day trader, you would see this and probably buy in ... say you paid $37.50 getting in, you probably would have lost money or a scratch at best, the whole up and down move was done in ten minutes. As always, I'm interested in talking with people who were involved with it in real time. 

Tanita Tikaram Channel

Added on by C. Maoxian.

First 50 tracks generated by the Pandora algo.

  1. Tanita Tikaram – Good Tradition
  2. Dido – Hunter
  3. Norah Jones – Come Away With Me
  4. Katie Todd – Leave
  5. Tanita Tikaram – Valentine Heart
  6. Suzanne Vega – Gypsy
  7. Norah Jones – Broken
  8. Edie Brickell & New Bohemians – Circle
  9. The Cranberries – Pretty
  10. Tanita Tikaram – Love Is Just A Word
  11. Natalie Imbruglia – Torn
  12. Enya – Only Time [thumbs down]
  13. Sonya Kitchell – Train
  14. Tanita Tikaram – All Things To You
  15. Adele – Make You Feel My Love (Live)
  16. Dido – Here With Me
  17. Suzanne Vega – Marlene On The Wall
  18. Elaine K. – Soft Skin
  19. Norah Jones – Wake Me Up
  20. 10,000 Maniacs – These Are Days
  21. Sarah McLachlan – Adia [easy listening quality to this one]
  22. Dido – I’m No Angel
  23. Tracy Chapman – Almost
  24. Holly Cole – Alison [covering Elvis dangerous]
  25. Julee Cruise – Falling [Twin Peaks theme song?]
  26. Etta James – At Last
  27. Norah Jones – What Am I To You?
  28. Tanita Tikaram – My Love
  29. Norah Jones – Be Here To Love Me
  30. Thea Gilmore – Have You Heard
  31. Dido – Sand In My Shoes
  32. Tanita Tikaram – Play Me Again
  33. The Cranberries – Dreams
  34. 10,000 Maniacs – More Than This [not Natalie singing]
  35. Tori Amos – Sorta Fairytale [anodyne, thumbs down]
  36. Tanita Tikaram – One Kiss
  37. Norah Jones – Nightingale
  38. Dido – White Flag [top 40 hit?]
  39. Edie Brickell & New Bohemians – Nothing [another hit]
  40. Tanita Tikaram – Wonderful Shadow
  41. Norah Jones – The Long Way Home
  42. Julee Cruise – Floating [more Twin Peaks sounding stuff]
  43. Natalie Imbruglia – Leave Me Alone [one hit wonder with Torn]
  44. The Cardigans – 03:45 No Sleep
  45. Dido – Life For Rent
  46. Suzanne Vega – Straight Lines
  47. Cary Brothers – Ride
  48. Sting – Fields Of Gold
  49. Norah Jones – Humble Me
  50. Jennie Devoe – Don’t Forget To Breathe

TripAdvisor Pop, 1 Minute View

Added on by C. Maoxian.

TRIP popped at 12:33 PM ... not sure if the scanner would have picked up on it, but it surely would have seen 12:37 PM. 

As I've said time and again the one minute chart is not particularly useful for seeing where you could realistically enter and place stops, you need a tick chart for that, and my buddy @HCPG kindly provided me with two ten tick charts below:

You can see that it would have been tough (for the scanner) to spot between 12:32 and 12:37 ...

It's during the 12:37 bar that activity really picks up and it would be sounding multiple alarms ... even with a "bad" entry of $79 (better at $78) things would have worked out into the close, risk versus reward worthwhile (said with the benefit of hindsight). 

StockTwits stream, usual suspects NewsHedge_Squawk and OpenOutcrier ... Moench first to notice at 12:34 which gives me hope that the scanner would have bleeped, beating the pack. 

Beijing Restaurants -- Tribe

Added on by C. Maoxian.

Finally got over to this place, not sure how long it has been open, months maybe? It's near Hooters ... I had to ask directions at Gung Ho Pizza since I was walking down the shady side of the building; a kind waiter at Gung Ho actually *walked* me over to Tribe, which was great service!

I sat downstairs, in a spot that had a bit of an air con draft, but that was my fault.  There was an upstairs with some cozy tables for two, but I was dining solo.  Ever since it was discovered that I'm not the spoiled son of a Chinese-American medical doctor, my dating pool has shrunk dramatically.

Place has a crunchy granola vibe, must be some California thing they're imitating. There's a chain called Wagas, and a local place called Moka Bros., which are tapping into the same thing... ya know, light wood, chalk boards, healthful food ("grain bowls"), waitstaff in black t-shirts.

T-shirts with slogan

The whip-handed foreign boss was on site, which pleased me. I believe he is an American though he was speaking Chinese to his workers. He also had the good sense, given his balding pattern, to keep his hair very short and some designer stubble on face.  The staff seemed happy.

Glossary of Righteousness

Nice design element on the kitchen door, a slot in the shape of the Tribe 'T' logo ... those are the thoughtful touches I look for. Waitress was friendly (they all are, with *me*) and appeared to have that rarest of all things among Chinese girls: a shapely ass.  Food came out in good time, not too quick, not too slow, just as Goldi likes it.

My Twitter buddy @murdochsj recommended the lamb meatball sandwich, but they were out. So I got a chicken tandoori salad wrap (68 kuai, US$10.95) instead.  I also got some beet hummus (48 kuai, US$7.73), an Australian beer "Pure Blonde?" (38 kuai, US$6.12), and a carrot cake doughnut (25 kuai, US$4.03) for dessert. 

Wrap tap on wood, as Bobby Short sang.

My wrap was too dry. The filling to wrap ratio wasn't right. The filling itself wasn't bad, there just wasn't enough of it given the amount and dryness of the wrap. I like the idea of healthful food, but it has to be expertly done, and this fell short. Of course I'm an American pig and prefer things that drip.

Looks like tomato paste but it's hummus, not enough crisps

The hummus was a lovely color (from the beets) and it tasted good, but the texture was too smooth for me, too goy. Nothing compares with the hummus I ate during my year in Lebanon as a UN "peacekeeper." And the hummus didn't sit with me very well, not sure why, just a brief moment bouncing along the scooter later where I thought, "hmmm." They crisped and salted some cut-up wrap to scoop the hummus with... I had to ask for a second helping of the crisped wrap (no charge) to finish the bowl of hummus -- again a ratio problem.

Vegan schmegan, nuke that bad boy and hand it to Homer

They nuked the carrot cake doughnut (those are coconut flakes on top), which was nice and warm and the electromagnetic radiation negated its vegan quality (I hope).

Grand total 179 kuai, US$28.83, so it ain't cheap. They were doing good business on a Tuesday lunchtime, so the rising middle class in China is not suffering from price shock. Take credit cards, quick with fapiao.

Pitbull Channel

Added on by C. Maoxian.

First 50 tracks generated by the Pandora algo: 

  1. Pitbull -- Feel This Moment
  2. Enur -- Calabria 2008
  3. David Guetta -- Crank It Up
  4. Enrique Iglesias -- I Like It
  5. Pitbull -- Hey Baby (Drop It To The Floor)
  6. Flo Rida -- Whistle
  7. Nina Sky -- Move Ya Body
  8. Kat Deluna -- Whine Up
  9. Mark Ronson -- Uptown Funk (feat. Bruno Mars)
  10. Pitbull -- Bon, Bon
  11. Don Omar & Lucenzo -- Danza Kuduro
  12. DJ Snake & Lil Jon -- Turn Down For What
  13. Enrique Iglesias -- Bailanda (English Version)
  14. Pitbull -- Give Me Everything
  15. Sean Paul -- Temperature
  16. Jennifer Lopez -- Dance Again
  17. Usher -- Scream
  18. Robin Thicke -- Blurred Lines
  19. -- Scream & Shout
  20. Black Eyed Peas -- The Time (Dirty Bit)
  21. Flo Rida -- Low
  22. Havana Brown -- We Run The Night
  23. Jason DeRulo -- Talk Dirty
  24. Usher -- DJ Got Us Fallin' In Love
  25. Far East Movement -- Like A G6
  26. Prince Royce -- Back It Up (feat. Pitbull)
  27. Flo Rida -- Wild Ones
  28. Sean Paul -- (When You Gonna) Give It Up To Me
  29. David Guetta -- Sexy Chick
  30. Usher -- More
  31. LMFAO -- Party Rock Anthem
  32. Flo Rida -- Right Round
  33. Enrique Iglesias -- Bailando (Spansih version)
  34. Enur -- Calabria 2007 (MIMS Remix)
  35. Jennifer Lopez -- Live It Up
  36. David Guetta -- Titanium
  37. Usher -- Yeah!
  38. Sean Paul -- We Be Burnin' 
  39. Enrique Iglesias -- Tonight (I'm Fornicating With You) [SUBTLE!]
  40. LMFAO -- Sexy And I Know It
  41. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis -- Thrift Shop
  42. Sean Paul -- Get Busy
  43. Pitbull -- I Know You Want Me (Calle Ocho)
  44. David Guetta -- Where Them Girls At
  45. Jeremih -- Tonight Belongs to U! (feat. Flo Rida)
  46. Rihanna -- We Found Love
  47. Pitbull -- Shake Senora
  48. Nelly -- Just A Dream
  49. Jeremih -- Down On Me
  50. Ying Yang Twins -- Shake

TrueCar Transaction Revenue

Added on by C. Maoxian.

From the latest 10-K:

"During 2014, we generated revenues of $206.6 million and recorded a net loss of $48.4 million. Of the $206.6 million in revenues, 92% consisted of transaction revenues with the remaining 8% derived primarily from the sale of data and consulting services to the automotive and financial services industries. 

Autodata estimates that in 2014, OEMs spent $46 billion in incentives to induce consumers to purchase their vehicles. This is an increase of nearly 15% over 2013. Incentive spending now represents approximately 9% of industry transaction revenues.

Revenues consist of fees paid by dealers participating in the Company’s dealer network with which the Company has an agreement (“TrueCar Certified Dealers” or “Dealers”). TrueCar Certified Dealers pay the Company fees either on a per-vehicle basis for sales to Auto Buying Program users or in the form of a subscription arrangement.

The Company recognizes revenue for fee arrangements based on a per-vehicle basis when the vehicle sale has occurred between the Auto Buying Program user and the Dealer. Under the contractual terms and conditions of arrangements with its network of participating TrueCar Certified Dealers, the dealer is required to pay the Company upon the sale of a vehicle to an Auto Buying Program user that has been provided to the dealer by the Company. Recognition of revenue from the sale is not contingent upon verification or acceptance of the transaction by the dealer.

Upon a user deciding to proceed with the user’s vehicle purchase through the Company, the user provides his or her name, address, e-mail, and a phone number during the process of obtaining a Guaranteed Savings Certificate, which gives the Company the identity and source of a TrueCar introduction provided to a specific dealer prior to an actual sale occurring. After a sale occurs, the Company receives information regarding the sale, including the identity of the purchaser, via the Dealer Management System used by the dealer that made the sale. The Company also receives information regarding vehicle sales from a variety of data sources, including third party car sales aggregators, car dealer networks, and other publicly available sources (collectively, “sales data”) and uses this sales data to further verify that a sale has occurred between an Auto Buying Program user and a TrueCar Certified Dealer, as well as a means to invoice the Dealer shortly after the completion of the sales transaction. Actual vehicle sales data is reported on a daily basis shortly following the date of sale.

The Company also recognizes revenue from dealers under subscription agreements. Subscription fee arrangements are short-term in nature with terms ranging from one to three months and are cancellable by the dealer or the Company at any time.

Subscription arrangements fall into three types: flat rate subscriptions, subscriptions subject to downward adjustment based on a minimum number of vehicle sales (“guaranteed sales”), and subscriptions subject to downward adjustment based on a minimum number of introductions (“guaranteed introductions”).

Under flat rate subscription arrangements, fees are charged at a monthly flat rate regardless of the number of sales made to users of the Company’s platform by the dealer. For flat rate subscription arrangements, the Company recognizes the fees as revenue over the subscription period on a straight line basis which corresponds to the period that the Company is providing the dealer access to the Auto Buying Program.

Under guaranteed sales subscription arrangements, fees are charged based on the number of guaranteed sales multiplied by a fixed amount per vehicle. To the extent that the actual number of vehicles sold by the dealers to users of the Company’s platform is less than the number of guaranteed sales, the Company provides a credit to the dealer. To the extent that the actual number of vehicles sold exceeds the number of guaranteed sales, the Company is not entitled to any additional fees.

Under guaranteed introductions subscription arrangements, fees are charged based on a periodically-updated formula that considers, among other things, the introductions anticipated to be provided to the dealer. To the extent that the number of actual introductions is less than the number of guaranteed introductions, the Company provides a credit to the dealer. To the extent that the actual number of introductions provided exceeds the number guaranteed, the Company is not entitled to any additional fees.

For guaranteed sales and guaranteed introductions subscription arrangements, the Company recognizes revenue based on the lesser of (i) the actual number of sales generated or introductions delivered through the Auto Buying Program during the subscription period multiplied by the contracted price-per-sale/introduction or (ii) the straight-line of the subscription fee over the period over which the services are delivered."

Would like to see a revenue breakdown on the per-vehicle auto buying program versus subscriptions, and a further revenue breakdown among the three types of subscriptions.

Beijing Restaurants -- Ippudo

Added on by C. Maoxian.

Ippudo is a chain noodle restaurant out of Japan, I guess. I think there are two branches in Beijing, one in the Kerry Center and one in Oriental Plaza, I visited the latter.  There are lots of chain noodle restaurants around (Mian Ai Mian, Ajisen, Kang Shifu, etc.) but Ippudo is a little more upscale than those. 

Masters of redundancy

They pull out your chair for you and give you a glass of water immediately. I went a little after the end of the lunch hour, so it was fairly empty and service was quick and friendly. Seats feel a bit low to me but I'm larger than the average Japanese. I got the "Special Sapporo Miso" (RMB58, US$9.35), a small serving of extra noodles (Kae-dama) (RMB3, US$0.48), a small mug of Asahi draft beer (RMB30, US$4.84), and caramel pudding for dessert (RMB16, US$2.58) (a bit of sweetie at the end of every meal is the law).

Chicken broth was garlicky (which I liked), but way way too salty.  Could be a plot to make people order more mugs of beer (I resisted). Noodles were al dente, the way they should be. Caramel pudding was cold and came in a cute little jar that was tough to clean out (a barbarian might employ the digit usually reserved for nose picking to do this). I could hear an exhaust fan somewhere and they had some frantic jazzish music going, maybe to encourage diners not to linger.

Paying nine bucks for a bowl of chain store ramen means you're a sucker. But it's well lit and appears to be clean and gives you that homogenized, globalized, mall-based corporate blah restaurant feel that induces the anomie (am I in Santa Monica or Beijing?) which we all love. And it was better than the other places I mentioned above; of course it should be for the price bump. 

You pay on the way out. No service charge, they take credit cards and were quick with shousi fapiao. Grand total, RMB107 (US$17.25).

Special Sapporo Miso -- two types of pork, bamboo shoots, soft boiled egg half, seaweed

48 cents for 84 grams of extra noodles -- good idea for when you run out of noodles but still have broth

cold pudding, cute tiny portion