[CNBCfix Fast Money Review Archive, December 2012]
[Monday, December 31, 2012]

Guy Adami is already forecasting the 2013 Trade of the Year

John Harwood told Monday's Fast Money, "We are going over the cliff tonight," but of course, no one really cared.

Tim Seymour called Monday's rally "amazing," especially given that he was hearing nothing but "tax, tax, tax" in the deal details.

But, "We were oversold," Seymour said, in his usual cover-all-the-bases commentary.

Brian Kelly said he'd "take some off the table" from this rally but then indicated it will continue through Wednesday morning, when money managers don't want to risk starting the year off behind and you can still "buy it on the open."

"I think you gotta take profits," said Steve Grasso.

Guy Adami said the cliff news over coming weeks will be "probably on the margins positive for the market" and help it push toward 1,500, but down the road there's no solution for "revenue growth," and "I think the trade of the year will be getting short this market early."

Scott Nations was less skeptical than anyone, saying the details coming out Monday are a "bigger win" than people expected Friday, a deal "more comprehensive than we would've thought."

Nations also mentioned the alternative minimum tax as something important to be dealt with, even though it's patched absolutely every year.

Tim Seymour’s was the most obviously and annoyingly predictable

Brian Kelly, perhaps as a Halftime makeup call, was given a majority of the discussion time on Monday's Fast Money to offer his trades for 2013.

Those included the Hong Kong dollar, buy it, EWH, "this is the Ackman trade."

Kelly also likes gold above $2,000, and euro over 1.50.

Guy Adami could only suggest silver goes north of $40.

Steve Grasso predicted, "I think the market's gonna sell off 10%" in the 1st half of 2013.

Tim Seymour said, "I think emerging markets are gonna outperform in 2013."

Scott Nations was way too conditional, saying it's "50/50" rates go up by late 2013.

How exactly does a regular Joe play Dennis Gartman’s Trade of the Year?

Dennis Gartman told Monday's Fast Money that he's long gold in yen terms the day's rally was "probably a bit overdone" but the details of the cliff are, "on balance, not bad."

Gartman then went on to point out that a century ago, a house cost about 600 ounces of gold, and it's 90 ounces right now, so the inference would be housing's cheap and gold's expensive, and he says one trade is to get "out of gold stocks and long housing stocks."

But Gartman saved cotton for his "trade of the year," saying it's "built a base, doesn't want to go down."

Tim Seymour, as hapless as ever in the GFI/FCX sphere, assured viewers, "Gold miners to me look like a great trade here ... I like GFI, we're long here." He also said of FCX (and pointed out the recent gain as this page did while Joe Terranova buckled on the trade too quickly), "copper is going higher."

CLF: ‘I think it goes higher’

Tim Seymour said on Monday's Fast Money that CLF is a "very impressive stock to look at ... I think it goes higher," citing renewed strength in iron ore.

"I'm afraid of this level in Cliffs," said Steve Grasso, but Seymour insisted that iron ore prices generally aren't believed right away because it's not traded on an exchange.

Grasso said he will "take another look at the utility stocks" in 2013.

Grasso said that "37 seems to be the bottom in the name" in M, but "I'd stay away" until there's cliff clarity.

Brian Kelly cautioned against chasing MAS; "I do think it's a bit long in the tooth." Guy Adami said to sell BBY when it gets over 12 or 12.25.

Adami: YHOO over AAPL

Guy Adami, asked to pick between AAPL and YHOO for 2013 (which was a great question by the way) on Monday's Fast Money, said, "here comes the hate mail, I can see it now," and went on to pick YHOO.

Brian Kelly backed that, saying buyers will "probably have a trading opportunity here in Apple," but "I'm with Guy on this one."

Steve Grasso said he likes YHOO also but "just be careful" because it's had trouble with the 21, 21½ level, and to exit if it gets below 19.20.

Colin Gillis blustered onto the set to declare EBAY a "brand new marketplace" with "lots of purchasing, instead of bidding," which is why he likes the stock for 2013; meanwhile PayPal is "still tremendous," and by the way the company has "also positioned themselves for mobile."

All well and good, until Gillis suggested you could "pair it up on the short side with Amazon ... the trade worked in '12."

Gillis had to fend off Tim Seymour's concerns about EBAY lacking international growth by saying the U.S. is stronger than Europe.

Guy Adami said he likes EBAY, but "Amazon probably continues higher."

Melissa Lee invoked the Bob Seger Trade in her remarks.

‘I’d fold Tesoro’

Guest Ben White told Monday's Fast Money that President Obama may not want to negotiate much on the debt ceiling but he'll have no choice.

Meanwhile, White indicated Republicans had leverage on Monday because even though the wealthy tax bracket seemed a done deal, Democrats still wanted to wrap things up before there could be market turmoil on Wednesday.

Scott Nations reported a "giant put-buyer in the XLF," specifically 31,000 March 16 puts for 58 cents. "This is pure protection," Nations said.

Tim Seymour called BAC a "hold 'em" and for the first time in a while noted they "stole Merrill Lynch."

Seymour complained that since Farm Aid, "the farmers basically have been stealing from us."

Jane Wells predicted Apple would have a TV by mid-year, and that MSFT will never hit 40, which prompted a sell-MSFT Final Trade from Scott Nations.

Brian Kelly called S a "hold 'em," while Steve Grasso said "I'd fold Tesoro."

Tim Seymour's Final Trade was RSX. Guy Adami said NFLX, Steve Grasso said MO and Brian Kelly said GLD.

Melissa Lee observed all those people in Times Square, "trapped with no bathroom in sight."

Dr. J still trying to convince himself it was wise to get out of the market

Jon Najarian, having made a rather over-the-top and regrettable declaration last week that for the first time in 31 years he's completely out of the market (except, he said Monday, for that new position "into the close a little on Friday" based on the VIX), got trapped in one of those have-to-keep-defending-this-ridiculous-view-because-I'm-the-one-who-said-it on Monday's Halftime Report, arguing that whatever happens in D.C. will be an "anorexically thin deal," and that Congress will "once again punt this thing down the road."

Both of which may be true, but doesn't really support Najarian's newfound stay-out theory, when in fact it's anything but as the market wants the can kicked down the road.

Judge Wapner seized on this near the end of the program, telling Najarian some such as Michael Santoli see a sell-the-news on a deal, but is the Dow really going to plunge if that happens?

"I think the market rips to the upside, but then it's a screaming sale," Najarian insisted, stressing the debt ceiling.

Sigh. Whatever. Some folks think the Redskins will actually win their playoff game.

Stephen Weiss predicted a "decent size deal" and a "short pop in the market," but he's "not getting carried away." Josh Brown agreed with Wapner, saying without this political machination going on, stocks would be "probably be at all-time highs" in every index except the Nasdaq, and the notion of a 10% correction, "I just can't see it."

Najarian did say at the end of the program that if indeed stocks pop on the cliff, "sell into that pop." Stephen Weiss added, "I agree with that."

Weiss made the better argument

Stephen Weiss actually made a fairly eloquent case for GMCR on Monday's Halftime, rattling off the list of new management and asserting, "I gotta believe they did a proctological exam" on the financials before assuming their positions.

And, it's got high short interest and has done well the last few quarters, Weiss said.

Bear-case-maker Josh Brown said short interest is no catalyst, but "Starbucks is a huge issue for this company" and that Kraft has a device also.

Brian Kelly, asked to opine, had already prejudged the case, complaining that Weiss had made a good argument but the stock is already "up a hundred percent in the last couple months," and why not wait for a pullback.

2013 ‘pretty good year’

Thomas Lee told Judge Wapner on Monday's Halftime Report he sees "a pretty good year for markets" in 2013, though the 1st half will be "pretty tricky."

Judge, pointing to Lee's emphasis on cyclicals, said, "That sounds like risk-on all the way to me." Lee agreed, saying cyclicals have a "lot of relative strength ... I think it's risk-on, I think you wanna buy the dips."

During a cogent go-round on how the markets do indeed seem to stop being scared of these crises once the crises start to linger a while, Stephen Weiss contended that "most of the selling pressure's already taken place."

Lee said he likes MCD as a "global story."

Judge does an excellent job of challenging Gross over not being bullish enough in recent years

Bill Gross, not really a Fast Money/Halftime guest (he usually leaves that to Tony Crescenzi or Neel Kashkari), affirmed to Judge Wapner on Monday's Halftime Report that he thinks stocks and bonds will both do worse than 5% in 2013, saying the "tailwinds" of low rates are absorbed by now.

Judge Wapner's rightful questions about Gross underestimating the markets for more than a year were answered in the form of a Brag Trade, "The Total Return Fund has done 10%-plus," and then, "We're not curmudgeons here; we're not looking for the end of the world."

Gross, who had to defend the cult of equities comment by insisting it wasn't as big of a deal as people said it was, contended that the Fed has been "spinning straw into gold," and it's a question of "how long that'll continue."

Basically, it's an extremely conservative (in terms of making waves) and irrelevant forecast.

Stephen Weiss said he thinks that by the 2nd half of the year, Wall Street will see a "flood from bonds into stocks and see a much higher market."

A year ago at this time, it was FB, FB, FB

In what might make our year-end list for biggest understatement, Judge Wapner told Jon Najarian on Monday's Halftime Report that AAPL is going to be the most talked-about stock in 2013, because "you can just feel it."

Dr. J said it's the most-talked-about stock virtually every hour, and he predicts it "kicks off 2013 very strong," and will "outperform in the 1st and 2nd quarters."

Stephen Weiss said he'd still buy M and prefers it over BBY. Josh Brown said there are "all kinds of issues here" at CHK; maybe CVX could buy it or part of it, so "it's not something you wanna be short ... It's not my cup of tea."

Brian Kelly said not to be scared away by the CLF gain, in fact if you like the iron ore buildout story, "the play right now is this Cliffs Natural."

Kelly backed HPQ, which he said had "probably purged all the bad news in this stock," then even suggested ORCL buying it and Mark Hurd taking over. "I would buy right here," Kelly said.

That prompted a "wow" from Judge Wapner.

Brian Kelly, who was barely heard from in his makeshift setup, told Judge well into the show, "good to be here," and "I like Mosaic here."

Kate Kelly tallied up the year's IPOs and noted VIPshop, Proto Labs and Intercept Pharmaceuticals were big winners. But whether Twitter goes public in 2013, "who's to say."

[Friday, December 28, 2012]

Stephen Weiss says ‘off to the races’ 2 or 3 times

According to Stephen Weiss on Friday's Halftime Report, as long as you can stomach the sausage-making that occurs this weekend and perhaps beyond, you'll do fine.

Stay in "high-quality names," Weiss said, because you "wanna ride it out," and once there's a cliff deal, "I think the market's OK, it's off to the races."

Jon Najarian predicts that not just a thin deal is coming but an "anorexic" one, and admits that shorting the market this weekend "would be very dangerous." But Najarian contended there will be "panic during those first 3 weeks of January" that includes a "whoosh down."

Pete Najarian predicted a pop on "any kind of a deal" and said it would add "500 points to the stock market." Mike Murphy suggested 4-5% on the S&P.

Stephen Weiss said a deal represents "minimal downside."

Pete has trouble with definition of ‘conservative’

Michael Santoli, who doesn't really have the boldest stock calls, told Friday's Halftime Report that his theory last week that a cliff deal is sell the news now depends on what the market has done in advance, and so right now after this week, "I think it's actually kind of neutral."

Santoli said Wall Street isn't as interested in tackling long-term debt and entitlements as others are and that the market has "pushed aside" those concerns; he just doesn't agree with the notion that it's "melt-up time" on a deal.

Stephen Weiss said he doesn't agree with the notion mostly promoted by Jon Najarian that debt ceiling matters; "we've been there before with debt ceilings," Weiss said, and he is correct. (Translation: It's going up; now we know to ignore the rhetoric beforehand.)

Guest Alec Young dispensed the helpful wisdom that the short-term market matters only because "frankly the worse it gets here, the better" the entry point for buying. Young predicts 2013 will be a "high-single-digit" type of year with a 1,550 S&P target.

Stephen Weiss found that level "conservative" and stressed the "off to the races" thing again. Pete Najarian curiously first said of Young's number, "I don't think it's conservative at all," then, "I think that 1,550's conservative."

How come nothing about YHOO monetizing the Asian assets?

Few cliches are more tiresome on the Halftime Report than the 1%er from Silicon Valley who tells Judge "sure there are some challenges ahead" but "omg there are SO many companies doing SO many things right and ONCE they monetize mobile, omg…"

So Friday, viewers were treated to Ann Winblad, who stressed that FB's mobile app developers are "really building a great platform."

Winblad expects Twitter to be smartly independent next year and be an IPO candidate and Amazon to benefit from bigger cloud spending.

DELL, on the other hand, is seen by Winblad as being in "transformation phase next year," while "HP is slightly opaque to me right now" with "very slow-moving parts." (Translation: Those are the ones that suck.)

Wonder when the analysts will start incorporating ‘way uncool,’ ‘digital etiquette’ and ‘human decency’ into the FB models

Mike Murphy tangled with Stephen Weiss on Friday's Halftime Report over FB, arguing that according to Boy Genius, Instagram actually has been gaining users, and Murphy's bullishness is "really a valuation call," before explaining he really likes the "want buttons and their gift buttons" and thinks the stock will touch the IPO price next year.

Weiss scoffed at the importance of the IPO price, "that's only a benchmark actually for the company screwing something up," that the company is prone to "alienate their customers" and the advertising is "unbelievably expensive," meanwhile, there are "so many buy recommendations on the Street."

Jon Najarian explained, "I'm not a fan of Facebook," he got out of it in the low 20s, and "I just don't buy the story."

Later during a related discussion, Weiss said "Amazon to me is egregiously overvalued" but he'd be willing to pay up for FB if the strategy gains traction. Murphy said FB will be a much tougher call around 31 or 32 than now. Pete Najarian, who at one point actually said "I still like Intel, sure," was convinced enough to make FB his Final Trade.

Nobody actually said to buy HLF before it started going back up

Once again, a show called "Fast Money" (er, in this case Halftime Report) has missed the trade of the week.

That appears to be HLF, based on the post-Ackman bounce that traders only decided to talk about after it happened.

"I think you've got a real shot here," said Jon Najarian, who admitted he "liquidated" his position at 28 but that there's potential with the company hiring David Boies to go after Ackman. "I think this is a big deal," he said.

Mike Murphy said to take money off in FAST, while Stephen Weiss said WLT is a name to be long if you believe in the resurgence of the global growth story.

Pete Najarian said NOK is only experiencing a "little bit of a pullback." Mike Murphy said he began to take "some of our money off the table" in HOV after he noticed Ara was selling. Stephen Weiss mentioned a book.

Anthony Grisanti said if there's no cliff deal, "you're gonna see Treasurys a lot higher." Stephen Weiss said that's the "last hurrah" for Treasurys and if there's a a market pop he'd start to short bonds with "both hands."

Doc: Watch C March 44 calls

Boris Schlossberg, master of the soundbite at the 51-minute mark, told Judge Wapner on Friday's Halftime he would buy dollar/yen at 85.50 but concedes it's a "crowded" trade.

Jon Najarian said "I love McDonald's down here at these levels," though Stephen Weiss is cautious on the name.

Pete Najarian said he'd hold all 3 of BAC, HD and JPM. As Judge Wapner asked the panel to rate the year's losers, Jon Najarian cracked that he was expecting a "picture of us." Stephen Weiss said "why gamble" on HPQ.

Mike Murphy's Final Trade was V. Stephen Weiss said BAC, and Jon ("I'm out of everything") Najarian said March 44 calls in Citigroup.

[Thursday, December 27, 2012]


OMG — Mel, Seema practically
wearing the same outfit

Good thing they both weren't at the Nasdaq, or we'd be talking serious clash, and people would be wondering should I stay or should I go.

Viewers of Thursday's Fast Money were treated to a pair of gorgeous burgundy dresses when Mel Lee invited Seema Mody to report on the Twittersphere.

Mody elicited a bull call on RL from Anthony Scaramucci, who said he likes the stock "for the long term."

Mike Murphy said snow and heavy short interest help DECK. Jon Najarian said he likes KORS over COH and that KORS is seeing "unusual activity" in options to boot.

How to get ahead:
‘Just follow the market’

Jon Najarian reiterated on Thursday's Fast Money he's out of the market, in hopes of dodging the "whole bunch of bad heading our way."

Stephen Weiss agreed with that sentiment but said he merely "shaved" some of his BAC and F.

Mike Murphy said he was buying the VIX in the morning, then took it off as the market recovered. Murphy noted the S&P 500 held 1,401 and said 1,418/1,419 is the key level to take your cue from; "just follow the market."

Anthony Scaramucci said right now stocks are a "short-term coin toss."

Stephen Weiss accuses guest of only retelling part of another guest’s story

Larry McDonald outlined a rather ambitious 2-part trading plan for the fiscal cliff negotiations on Thursday's Fast Money.

McDonald advised viewers to "trade the inflection points," meaning, expect a Bobby Walden special, er, "a 30- to 40-yard punt ... a deal without an extension of the debt ceiling," and then as the market rises, "sell that rally hard" before the nitty-gritty of the debt ceiling comes into play.

McDonald referred to his systemic Lehman indicators and said things aren't bad now; "this is economic risk; it's not systemic risk."

Curiously, McDonald's cliff theory was used by Barry Sine to bolster Sine's own technical-selloff-ahead theory, claiming the details McDonald sees from a deal are pretty bearish for equities.

And then Sine got to the bona fide mumbo jumbo, claiming the "presidential-cycle theory" and explaining 2013 will be a "down year for stocks," with the S&P reaching 1,330.

Stephen Weiss challenged Sine not just to "cherry-pick Larry's comments" but to address the other element of fighting central banks around the world. Sine claimed the banks' infusion is already here, and in fact Barack Obama's fiscal proposal is taking liquidity out of the markets.

Sine told Melissa Lee that 1,400 is a key support level which, if it holds, would negate his retracement theory. Mike Murphy said 1,418, 1,419 are the key. Jon Najarian said he won't start buying until the VIX is in the mid-20s.

Anthony Scaramucci’s impressed that a CEO knows his strike price

Lions Gate bigwig Michael Burns must have another big movie coming out, given that he spent a few moments talking about the strength of his business on Thursday's Fast Money.

Burns shrugged off Goldman Sachs' recent research concerns by stressing GS' $18 price target and said his company has "hit critical mass," has improving margins, and "I think we're gonna massively delever."

Melissa Lee's "questions" proved a bigger game of softball than what Jim Belushi put together in "About Last Night," but then Anthony Scaramucci took it to an even higher level by pointing out Burns' awareness of his $16.09 options-strike level as something that should be "very motivating as an investor," of course it doesn't hurt to be speaking with movie moguls with relatives entering the business.

Mike Murphy was the lone grounded individual in this segment, pointing out that if a blockbuster film is a miss, it "could really hit the stock."

Weiss hangs 10 on JCP

Stephen Weiss reiterated on Thursday's Fast Money his bearish outlook on JCP: "It's got 10 bucks written all over it," Weiss said.

Mike Murphy said JCP is a name he wants to short, but with half the float short, "this is a tough name to be short."

Anthony Scaramucci said no one's talking about the effect of a longshoremen strike on the economy.

Mike Khouw said bold players willing to try the airlines can try DAL; "if you're willing to tread there I'd actually buy this one," Khouw said.

Anthony Scaramucci defended JPM and said, "Don't fight the Fed." Mike Murphy said X got a needed pullback and is "still in a bullish formation."

Anthony Scaramucci actually suggests Randi Zuckerberg episode could be hint that feds will ‘ultra-regulate’ Facebook

Clearly, the most quotable person on Thursday's Fast Money happened to be the Moochmeister, Anthony Scaramucci.

Scaramucci actually suggested completely seriously that the Randi Zuckerberg photo flap could be another brick in the wall toward a move by feds to "ultra-regulate" the site.

Scaramucci also argued, as few are these days, to "get long the yen."

Mike Murphy revealed, "We actually bought more Ford today," then said to stick with his M Fast Fire (though, like everyone else, he was more concerned about wearing the same shirt in the old clip).

Jon Najarian said he likes GD in the defense space and pointed out its gains have come post-election. Mike Khouw said someone bought 5,000 January 50 calls in JWN for $2.40.

For stock "lottery picks" (and Joe Terranova says it's the viewers who are "deficient" in risk management), Jon Najarian suggested SGMS as a play on mobile gaming, Stephen Weiss suggested NIHD as an emerging markets wireless play on the "potential they get acquired." Mike Murphy offered VTG, for the "value of its land."

Amelia Bourdeau, who always turns heads on television, advised buying dollar/yen at 85.60 with a target of 87.50.

Mike Murphy's Final Trade was TGT. Anthony Scaramucci said RL. Stephen Weiss said short XLE, and Jon Najarian (who's out of everything but apparently doesn't recommend that to others) said long ANN.

Murphy: AMZN could see 199

For whatever reason, despite its staggering success of the last decade or so, AMZN tends to regularly tempt the shorts on Fast Money.

Including Mike Murphy, who revealed on Thursday's Halftime Report, "We shorted more of it again today ... I think there's too many things working against Amazon."

Murphy said the stock could sink below 200.

"I think he's right," said Jon Najarian.

Dr. J apparently knows the cost basis of every AAPL transaction this week

Judge Wapner asked the contestants on Thursday's Halftime Report to declare what will be the best sector of 2013 (Herbalife apparently not considered a category unto itself).

"It's all about financials," said Joe Terranova, though he didn't say "generational buy."

Jon Najarian predicted technology. Mike Murphy said industrials, specifically IR, and Josh Brown said health care, based in part on the "secular trend of people getting older."

Najarian assured Judge that the AAPL sellers aren't taking baths, but rather they are selling now to "take those gains. Not losses. Gains."

No buying blindly

Guest Jason Pride, perhaps recalling that now-infamous September remark of Brian Kelly about buying everything that's not nailed down, insisted on Thursday's Halftime Report that this is most certainly not a market where you can go in and "blindly buy."

Pressed to identify specific dividend-paying giants that aren't part of the expensive lot mentioned by Josh Brown, Pride mentioned PM, CL and YUM.

Joe Terranova said that what Pride is describing is a "bond-friendly world," but Joe doesn't think we can have another year of bond and stock strength; "something's gotta give."

Dr. J made stronger case

Thursday's Halftime Report debate pitted Jon Najarian (bull) against Mike Murphy (bear) on, of all things, DAL.

"Stock's going higher," Najarian asserted, citing baggage fees, the airline's decision to get bigger planes on some of its regional routes, and the price of oil.

Murphy said oil may be stable but it's stable at a high level, and that the stock has jumped too fast. "To me, it's extended," Murphy said.

Josh Brown, who had prejudged the case, sided with Najarian.

Jim Iuorio told Jackie D that "I don't think it is a good time to get in gold." Joe Terranova flat-out declared, "The love affair that hedge funds have had with gold is over."

Brown: Good riddance to WMT

Jon Najarian told Judge Wapner on Thursday's Halftime that the reason AAPL was being sold on Thursday is because "the day ends in 'day'."

Najarian even predicted the stock would dip under $500 by year-end.

Mike Murphy told Judge that BBY is more likely to draw capital than RSH and JCP, primarily because of the purported plan already reported.

Murphy also predicted that CLF could get a "nice pop" through 40.

Stan Humphries — not the quarterback who saved the '94 Steelers from a Super Bowl embarrassment, but the Zillow economist — told Judge Wapner, "The housing market is definitely seeing a strong recovery at this point," and doubted Robert Shiller's reservations; "I believe he's wrong."

Josh Brown was Fast Fired for recommending WMT on 10/12 and admitted he gave up on it. "I would not be back into Wal-Mart at this point ... pretty much broken at this point."

Cute Kathy Lien said to buy dollar/yen at 84.75, with a target 87. Joe Terranova said to look at TM and KMTUY.

Joe Terranova's Final Trade was SWN. Jon Najarian said FST, Mike Murphy said ADT and Josh Brown said JNJ.

A 31-year first for Dr. J

Quite frankly ... honestly ... it just seems a little over the top.

Jon Najarian declared on Thursday's Halftime Report, "For the first time in 31 years in the market I'm completely out of everything."

But, Najarian quickly conceded, there's "no reason to get short either."

His colleagues Josh Brown, Mike Murphy and Mr. New Land/World (with a Grand Canyon joke that didn't work) were much more circumspect; nobody doing any cheerleading, but indicating this isn't exactly September 2008.

Nothing wrong with Najarian's position. The problem is, every time this market looks avoidable/shortable, it becomes face-ripped-off land; you're fighting the Fed and a massive government-central bank approach to boosting stocks, and we're just a handshake away from Barry Bannister land, so might as well endure a few days of long pain for the spike that's coming.

More from Thursday's Halftime later.

[Wednesday, December 26, 2012]

Another NFLX debate in which nobody actually explains the real reason the stock tends to go up

As a roundup of events affecting NFLX stock in the last, oh, 3 months, it wasn't a bad feature.

As a catalyst of any sort for buying or selling now, it was a bust.

That would be Wednesday's Fast Money bull-bear debate on NFLX between Guy Adami and a seemingly-not-particularly-interested Moochmeister, Anthony Scaramucci.

Adami pointed out (Zzzzzz) short covering, Disney deal, the Carl Icahn "wild card" as reasons to stay long; "I'm wrong below 84," he said, but it can "easily trade up to 105, 110."

Yeah, but, "This thing is priced into 2025, 2030," Scaramucci grumbled.

Adami said in the 200s, the stock was a different story than it is now.

Scott Nations sounded bearish, complaining about how Netflix is, like the Qwikster debacle, "making a hash out of the business," and it has to raise eyebrows to be dependent on its No. 1 competitor, AMZN.

Josh Brown argued both sides, claiming "what Amazon is doing with Prime is a game-ender" but then agreeing with Adami, "above 85, this things in bull mode."

Once again no one mentioned the real reason for the stock's movement and the only argument that matters (and right now given the range it's easily in Adami's favor): For whatever reason, there's a core group of people who love this stock, and every so often there's a mating season of sorts when they go wild and start buying it, and then eventually that subsides and it spends a couple months plummeting, then a couple more months flat, and then we get the mating season all over again...

Dennis Gartman reaffirms yen trade (but says nothing about that Sept. 18 thing about the gold miners finally being more appealing than gold the commodity)

We were hoping, as we always do, that Dennis Gartman would mention his long-gold-in-yen-terms trade on Wednesday's Fast Money.

But no. Dennis merely spoke of selling yen vs. dollars.

"I'm short of yen against dollars generally," Gartman said, referring to U.S., Canadian, Aussie, kiwi. "I can remember trading dollar/yen at 256 yen to the dollar," so a move up isn't really a big deal, Gartman added.

Gartman was long-term bullish on Japan stocks. "I think the Nikkei is on its way to 15,000 over the course of the next several years," Gartman said.

Josh Brown said the only thing he doesn't like about the long-Nikkei trade is that since March 2009 there have been "no less than 5 false Nikkei breakouts ... when you get these things wrong, it hurts."

ETF watcher Matt Hougan said he likes DXJ because it's not, like the EWJ, "inherently long the yen," and thus is "definitely a solid pick for next year."

‘Very high curb’

Anthony Scaramucci suggested on Wednesday's Fast Money that there's "a lot of money on the sidelines until we get this resolved."

Which will be about 2 days, and then we're talking Barry Bannister-land.

Guy Adami said he's in the "long-term lower camp" but "short-term buyer camp."

Josh Brown claimed it's "garbage time right now" and that there's not much to take seriously in market action this week.

Jon Najarian had the most pointed commentary, saying that when the rubber meets the road in the fiscal cliff, "this'll be like going off a very high curb ... I would sell, both hands."

Guy finds it ‘painful’ to assess AAPL’s chart

Guy Adami assured viewers of Wednesday's Fast Money it "pains me to say it," but AAPL at 513 is in "sort of no-man's land ... right here I think you're flippin' a coin."

Jon Najarian trumpeted that there's no wash-sale concerns for the Apple sellers (ignoring the ones who bought a couple months ago around $700), which is what makes it appealing. Josh Brown said he'd rather be long than short going into the next AAPL earnings call.

Guy Adami said RIMM's rise Wednesday gives holders "another opportunity to sell this thing." Adami also predicted an extended tumble in AMZN; "I think we're headed down to 240."

Anthony Scaramucci has higher expectations for FCX and JCP than most

We hadn't even been to Burger King yet Wednesday when Anthony Scaramucci served up something of a whopper on Fast Money.

FCX, Scaramucci said, "can easily trade with a 45, 50-level target."

(Presumably, that's over an extended period of time.)

Josh Brown said X has been moving since mid-December; "I think you can stick with the trade."

Scott Nations said the "momentum is clearly higher" in GNW, not exactly a difficult assessment to make. Jon Najarian, as indicated at lunchtime, is not high on COH; "I think this thing goes lower Melissa."

Josh Brown said he'd rather miss a JCP bottom rather than fail at picking it. "I'd rather buy this thing higher," Brown said. But Anthony Scaramucci argued there are a "ton of shorts in this name, they seem to have gotten the strategy figured out now."

Jon Najarian hailed February 13 call volume in F; "we're following that smart money in Ford." Anthony Scaramucci added, "I still like the Ford story better than GM," predicting a "resurge" of the Lincoln brand in 2013.

Sounds like Matt Hougan is calling a generational bottom without using the term

ETF watcher Matt Hougan told the crew on Wednesday's Fast Money that the EMLC is a "no-brainer ... not just for next year, but for the next 10 years."

Hougan also likes GXC and IEMG instead of some of their more famous rivals.

Anthony Scaramucci advised viewers holding RLGY to "stay in the position for now." Scaramucci also told Seema Mody, "I do like Verizon."

Guy Adami said if you've been long PBI, "not sure what you've been waiting for." Adami also predicted the VIX would be "north of 25" in the first couple months of 2013.

Scott Nations said someone was rolling out of the GD 62½ puts into the 65 puts. Nations also told Seema Mody he doesn't see FB at $35 but if it starts posting 80 cents a share EPS, that would take it to its IPO level.

Josh Brown once again touted the DVYE.

Brown's Final Trade (every panelist just barely beat the tight clock) was QCOM. Guy Adami said NFLX, Anthony Scaramucci said FDO and Jon Najarian said DISH.

Scaramucci said he needed a "barf bag" for the mall shopper who told Jane Wells (by the way how come we never have the good fortune to run into Jane Wells at the mall?) he was out buying even more gifts for his wife. Wells said she agreed with someone that Brad Pitt in those Chanel ads may not look so great compared to previous Brad Pitt, but "not compared to the rest of humanity." Jon Najarian said, "That's an indictment of that mall."

Guy Adami made a couple of classless puns directed at Mel about the tattoo-ad shirtless guy that this page won't repeat.

This page was right: Joe needs to put himself in Penalty Box® for bungled FCX mea culpa

This page sucks at trading.

But sometimes, we're a step ahead of even the vaunted Fast Money crew.

Case in point being Joe Terranova's curious merry-go-round on the head-scratching FCX plunge of early December.

It started with something not even on the show — a tweet Terranova sent Dec. 5 suggesting buying that day at 32.80 would be a "solid move" in a month or two, which incidentally this page totally agreed with.

Yet, a day later on Halftime, Terranova flipped. "I think it is gonna be in the Penalty Box® for some time ... not something you're gonna buy today and flip it in a month or two."

As this page pointed out (just PgDn), the stock only fell for one more day; Joe was merely a bit early, and not even wrong — had he just stuck by it for 3 weeks, he'd have people thanking him for finding them an extra 5% at the end of the month.

We're not sure why this page has a bug up the you know what about that particular stock; it was something about the amount of the initial selloff that was just so stoopid, like (fictional example) lopping $40 off IBM just because they say they're going to buy Research in Motion or something like that.

FB sounds a bit like
the 2012 Atlanta Falcons

Wednesday's Halftime Report provided a pop culture treat to viewers, and woulda thunk that the deliverer would be Joe Terranova.

"Reed Hastings should be singing (a staple of Patty Edwards' iCloud) 'Looks Like We Made It' by Barry Manilow," Terranova said, citing the "very good timing" of the Christmas Eve outage when no one (except Joe) was trying to stream "Road House," which won't derail the stock's climb "above a hundred."

Honestly, we're not aware of another version of "Looks Like," so the Manilow reference was a bit superfluous (like all the folks who feel the need to clarify "It's the Rodney Dangerfield of so and so ... it doesn't get any respect"); perhaps not our favorite tune, but in fact, this is a 1976 tune, and there is absolutely not a single bad 1976 tune ever produced, (nor 1975, 1974, 1973 or 1972; it's a bit dicier when you branch beyond that), so it's got that going for it.

The thing about Barry, you can dance, so when you're at the Michael J. Fox Foundation annual banquet and when the band strikes up the Manilow catalog, you can tap Melissa Lee for a foxtrot, and Mel in fact might even do a foxtrot with you.

Pete Najarian said he'd pick AAPL (it's just tax selling) over GOOG from here, and that FB might be a "one and done" for him unless it sustains robust growth. Joe Terranova said Amazon faces headwinds compared with other tech giants with its "entrenched platform" spending (#hewasbetterdeliveringbarrymanilowlines).

The COH debate: Looks like nobody really made it

Joe Terranova argued against Stephen Weiss on Wednesday's Halftime Report that COH is a buy apparently because all the bad news is out there.

It's "got the sell attached to it," Terranova said; "tell me something that I don't already know."

Terranova claimed this is a trading call and that COH has emerging markets potential and could see some kind of reversion with the Marlboro of elite retail names, KORS.

Stephen Weiss scoffed that COH is projecting 30% of sales from its Legends line (whatever the heck that is), which to him puts it in the category of a "fashion stock," and meanwhile, "I think Coach is old news." He'd go elsewhere, but not KORS because of its valuation.

Terranova tried to claim, "I think we're saying the same thing in essence." (Translation: You win.)

Weiss added, "I'd rather go to Nordstrom."

Terranova insisted COH is a way to "lose less" in a challenging retail environment.

Pete Najarian, having clearly prejudged the case, decided, "I'd have to this time go with Stephen Weiss," offering his own non-bottom argument for COH; "we're not even at the 52-week lows yet." Jon Najarian had also prejudged, saying COH's bottom is more likely 50 than 54; "I'm waiting for that washout here."

Flash: Pundit on CNBC says you can’t plunge broadly into retail but have to pick them company by company

Tom Stemberg told Wednesday's Halftime Report that he sees a "very, very sloppy retail environment" (obviously he hasn't dabbled in KORS) and claimed to be "shocked" that retailers were as strong as they were in recent weeks.

Stemberg a couple times stressed that success in retail isn't broad-based but a "company to company thing," and then suggested a couple names we've 1) never heard of and 2) don't believe are public companies at all, DavidsTea and "J. McLaughlin" (must be a cousin of J. Crew).

Most interesting was Stemberg's assertion that if the Amazon taxation playing field is leveled, you'll see more interest not in retail shops, but in the Web sites of companies such as WMT.

Joe Terranova hazarded a guess that 24% of retail spending is from the mid-Atlantic and Northeast, which may or may not require a correction later but we have neither the time nor the inclination to look it up.

Pete Najarian insisted he too goes company-by-company in retail and likes TJX, NKE, HD and LOW; "I would stay away from all this higher-end stuff."

Joe Terranova suggested being long TIF/short KORS, "it's all about mean reversion," prompting a "Wow" from Judge Wapner.

Stephen Weiss suggested M. Jon Najarian referred to "Stephanie" and felt obliged to inform viewers that means Stephanie Link, then said he would like to get TJX maybe around 40.

Judge made a reference to the "Heat game" that went way over our heads.

Another day or two of this, then it’ll be Barry Bannister time

Joe Terranova argued at the top of Wednesday's Halftime Report that "I think capital's coming out of consumer discretionary ... (and) moving into that materials and industrials space. That looks like the trade."

In fact, short XLY vs. long XLB was Terranova's Final Trade.

Jon Najarian said retail was the "only sector in the market" on Wednesday with decent volume.

John Stoltzfus told Judge that (Blondie reference time) one way or another, the fiscal cliff "has to be gotten through," and he doesn't think politicians are "that adamant" about sinking the economy.

But, "It doesn't look like they're gonna repair this thing before New Year's Day." (#sowhatoncetheyannounceitS&Pwillopen2013like2012)

Pete Najarian said, "I see the financials going a lot higher." Joe Terranova said there is "tremendous demand" for anything on the debt side from financials.

Panel’s best debate is over English translation of Joe’s surname

Sweet Jackie D introduced Anthony Grisanti and Jim Iuorio on Wednesday's edition of Gold Now Futures Now, with Grisanti contending that the crude strength "definitely is short-covering," but "I think it's a little overdone to the upside."

Iuorio used a lot of dialogue to indicate he's doing nothing but waiting. "Now it's decision time," he said, with 91.25 being the key level and if it can't break through, he would short, to 86.20.

Brian Sullivan in a report on CLF pronounced himself chef and said the Halftime gang are the diners, which prompted a go-round on whether "Terranova" means "New Earth" or "New Land" or "New World."

Paul Richards advised viewers sell the dollar/yen at 85.70. Mr. New Land insisted this matters to viewers, "they should care."

Pete Najarian said F options are hot and the stock "could very easily test the 52-week high." Stephen Weiss said he would hold GM and also F.

Pete Najarian predicted EMN will hit the 70s not real long from now. Pete's Lucky '13 pick was USG, Joe said RF and Jon Najarian said VMW on an unhitting of the pause button.

Pete Najarian's Final Trade was BAC. Stephen Weiss said TBF, and Jon Najarian said to short puts in AGQ.

[Monday, December 24, 2012]

No Halftime scheduled

It's Christmas Eve, and stock trading will be brief and likely quiet.

If not, it appears the Halftime/Fast Money gang won't be available to opine on it anyway, seeing as CNBC scheduled Closing Bell from noon to 2 p.m. Eastern, and then it's on to the canned holiday material.

We wouldn't be surprised to see Stephen Weiss, Stephanie Link or one of the Najarians buzzing in Monday on one of the programs, but we likely won't be keeping score.

While we understand Fast Money taking the day off, we're a little perplexed about pro football, especially given that Dec. 24, 1977, was one of the most exciting days in NFL history, even if at least one of those outcomes was a little troubling.

Michelle Meyer’s 2 recent CNBC appearances go unnoticed by this page

Sometimes, the schedules around here aren't exactly in synch with the most important CNBC moments.

Such as, the Squawk Box appearances made recently by Michelle Meyer, The World's Cutest Economist®.

The latest was Monday, Dec. 17, when Meyer was pinned down on a fiscal-cliff prediction by savvy Andrew Ross Sorkin, and proceeded to stammer: "I don't think we go past January 1st, but I do think it matters."

[Friday, December 21, 2012]

Bill Gurley basically too nice to say aloud that Andrew Mason’s CEO tenure is facing uphill odds

Judge Wapner tried to goad Bill Gurley into saying something interesting elicit dynamic comments about the technology space from Bill Gurley on Friday's Halftime Report but came up empty at least thrice.

First was Facebook, in which Gurley said he was "quite bullish" on the gift program while acknowledging the company was viewed as pricing itself "extremely high" for the IPO.

Gurley asserted, "This is a company you have to own if you're a large, you know, tech fund," but didn't seem convinced it was heading to its 38 IPO level, prompting Judge to suggest Gurley was not saying "buy," but then Gurley insisted it's "quite possible" the stock can get to 38, maybe in "2-3 years."

Judge also tried to get Gurley to bite on Instagram offending customers Netflix-style, but Gurley resisted that; "I don't fear that in this case."

Finally, Judge asked if Andrew Mason would still be running GRPN at this time next year. That wasn't really answered but dubbed an "interesting question"; "I'm not quite sure where they go from here," Gurley said, before predicting a "battle royale" in mobile payments.

Gurley also referred to Silicon Valley as a "microcosm," which we don't think was the term he intended in that particular usage.

Pete Najarian backed FB. "I do think it's going over $30," Pete said.

Joe Terranova said that in mobile payments, he likes V, MA and EBAY, then astutely fended off Judge's curious insertion of dreadful PAY into that conversation.

Stephen Weiss pays no attention to the debate he was supposed to evaluate

The Najarian brothers debated themselves over Research in Motion on Friday's Halftime Report and left viewers with basically no convincing argument in either direction.

Pete's first argument was that the stock Friday seemed to experience "kind of that flush kind of a volume," and that the service-revenue story is ongoing.

Jon insisted "the trends are weak," if the BlackBerry 10 is not a blowout, look out, and by the way the company is changing the way it gets service revenue.

Stephen Weiss was asked to declare a winner, but of course had already prejudged the case, making a curious if interesting point that market share isn't everything, the post office has tons and Porsche has little but only the latter makes money. Weiss backed RIMM, touting the BlackBerry 10 "I think it's going to be a very good device" and explaining he "started to buy it back today."

Joe Terranova, who didn't point out as this page has that the mythical takeout price has mysteriously fallen the more the story is being recalled, noted that Jon Najarian said last year that RIMM would get taken out in 2012 and now he's bearish, which means it gets taken out in 2013.

Joe struggles with brand names for flu medication

Pete Najarian said on Friday's Halftime Report that he'd wait to buy NKE on a pullback below $100, but in any case, "I like this stock a lot."

Jon Najarian predicted RHT would be up $5 on the day if there wasn't a steep market selloff going on; "they're doing just about everything right."

Najarian said the run in LOW and HD is not over. "I think this is at least a 2-quarter story into 2013," Najarian said, adding that if you want beta, try USG.

Stephen Weiss said "I like CVS a lot better" than WAG, and here's to a great flu season.

Joe Terranova reported that it took him "5 different CVS trips" to find some "Thermaflu" (sic), which as far as we can tell doesn't exist. "Thank goodness for Genentech and Roche," Terranova said, which must mean he was referring to Tamiflu, as opposed to Theraflu.

Couldn’t CNBC have just hired Santoli, rather than having to make a deal with Yahoo?

Michael Fredericks assured viewers of Friday's Halftime Report that "we've been running very low levels of risk, that he sees value in emerging markets stocks yielding over 4%, and he's also selling upside calls, a point that resonated with Pete Najarian.

Michael Santoli said that stocks in the mid-1,400s were poised to sell off on negative news and that the TLT might be back in vogue soon.

Joe Terranova chipped in, "I still think it's a bond-friendly world," and suggested LQD and HYG.

Judge forced the panel to opine on AAPL. Joe Terranova said he would "continue to own," even though the stock is a "little bit of a casino." Jon Najarian said, "I like it to outperform in the early part of 2013." Pete Najarian said "Wait until January to buy it," and Stephen Weiss concurred, specifically Jan. 22.

Boris Schlossberg understands the need for brevity in giving Judge a currency trade 50-plus minutes into the show and offered long euro/pound at .82.

Joe Terranova's Final Trade was VZ. Jon Najarian said WDC upside calls, Pete Najarian said BAC and Stephen Weiss said both BAC and AIG.

Joe: Buy the first week of January

Steve Liesman suggested on Friday's Halftime Report that John Boehner and Harry Reid are just as disheartened as Wall Street bulls.

"Nobody wants to be here," Liesman posited.

Stephen Weiss said it looks "increasingly likely" that we're going over the cliff, but you can "start nibbling away at high-quality companies."

Moments later, Weiss expressed caution about retail (in a debate over consumer confidence vs. spending with Steve Liesman), saying, "I don't think you buy right now."

"I think this is pure math right now," said Joe Terranova, pointing to the "drag" ($250 billion or whatever) from the cliff results and arguing there's a Plan C in the works, but wait for the volume to return to plunge back into stocks, "that's your time to buy, the first week of January."

Jon Najarian made a clumsy description of how David Tepper would look at the VIX, and given Friday's level, "now he's probably looking to buy."

But Najarian's most important pronouncement was that last Friday's close was 1,413, and "if we don't break through that, then yes you buy this dip."

"They look like clowns," Najarian said of Washington.

Pete Najarian's lone point on the subject was that it's "all about the fiscal cliff."

More from Friday's Halftime Report later.

This is one situation where Tim and Karen more readily than Dr. J recognized what’s going on

Jon Najarian on Thursday's Fast Money had harsh words for the sentiments expressed by Bill Ackman toward Ackman's short of HLF.

It sounds like someone who doesn't short much, Najarian said, in fact "only his 2nd big short," which is why Ackman's commentary was "lame."

"You don't apologize for it any more than you apologize for beatin' a team 72-zip. If they're bad, you stomp 'em," Najarian explained.

"Don't apologize for making money," Najarian advised. "He's apologizing here for making money."

Tim Seymour though, pointed out "It's a very cleveler (sic)- clever, self-serving, little, kind of, you know, play the violin here ... it reinforces that 'this guy's gotta be right, because he really doesn't wanna do this'."

Karen Finerman agreed, pointing out money is "fungible" when it comes to giving to charities (translation: He might've been planning on giving X million next year, and so this could constitute the X million, as if anyone would be auditing this promise), and that Ackman's statements are "clever."

Mike Khouw said there was a big buyer of January 30 puts for $1.30.

Tim Seymour is buying the same market he’s taking profits in

Tim Seymour outlined his strategy at the top of Thursday's Fast Money as only he can, first saying he's a "seller, taking profits," and then by the end of the monologue, "I'm a buyer of this market."

Seymour was forced to admit that what he really meant was, he's took profits Thursday, "but it's not because we don't like the market."

Steve Grasso said it's "prudent" to take profits, because "we're still waiting on fiscal cliff ... I think the market is poised to sell the news event here."

Karen Finerman explained a theory that actually sounded simple even to us — people selling now to lock in 2012 capital gains rates — then felt compelled to expound on it as though it was a major revelation, that it doesn't involve a wash sale because a wash sale "doesn't apply to gains," and that this notion fascinates people; "my husband actually loves that kind of thing."

Jon Najarian said it makes sense to sell some winners now, such as AAPL, HD, GLD, and that we're looking at a capital gains rate of 20%.

Steve Grasso chipped in that you can sell your losers too.

This time Steve Grasso actually fails to mention it needs to be scored by the CBO

Ed Mills told Thursday's Fast Money gang — just hours before John Boehner's nixed vote sank the S&P futures — that the markets will be "sanguine" as long as some parliamentary 72-hour clock starts before the end of the year even if the legislation takes longer.

Steve Grasso actually felt compelled to point out the themes that victorious candidates "ran on."

Mills said there's a better than 50/50 chance we go off the cliff. "I'd put it at about 60% ... probably have to bungee-jump the cliff," Mills said.

Jon Najarian chipped in, "I think overall that uh, we are not going to see a market crash."

A comparison is made to PALM in a flattering way

Eric Jackson presented a bull case throughout 2013 for, of all things, Research in Motion, on Thursday's Fast Money.

"I think you stay with the trade," Jackson said, because there's "room to go." He said normally he'd consider it a trade, but he's actually more inclined to hang on next year because a lot of people are negative on it, and when you ask them which phonemaker will be No. 3 they might be underestimating RIMM, it's the "best shot of anyone out there."

Mike Khouw doesn't see it that way, pointing to HTC instead and saying, "I just don't see where RIMM is gonna be competing in this space a couple years from now."

Jon Najarian congratulated brother Pete for being long RIMM.

Judge Wapner announced HPQ as the "worst trade" of 2012. Steve Grasso actually did well on it recently and said he's waiting for a pullback to get back in.

‘Benign’ cliff possibility

Bruce Kasman told Thursday's Fast Money that the U.S. economy still faces some "heavy lifting," and so next year, it's starts with the "China-Korea-Taiwan story ... that's what moves first. What moves 2nd is Europe."

He said the U.S. faces a "pothole" in the hit from the end of the payroll tax break (with a description about first quarter quantifiable effects that sounded accurate but we didn't have the energy or wherewithal to verify), even if you have "benign" judgments about the cliff.

Kasman said China looks headed for the "mid-8s" in growth. Tim Seymour said he likes CHU, CHT and BIDU (but probably isn't a buyer of the China market).

Brian Shactman pointed out that NKE is feeling the effect of "double-digit negatives in China." Tim Seymour pointed out that was already in the shares, and "this stock actually looks like it's breaking out."

Karen not familiar with the catalog of Burl Ives

Gordon Johnson's bear case (below) on FSLR just took another hit.

While Johnson advised viewers a day earlier to short the name after a January analyst meeting, Melissa Lee was compelled to tell viewers on Thursday's Fast Money that this purported January meeting "is not the case," and in fact the company says it will provide 2013 guidance after the February earnings call.

Which kinda makes you wonder how thoroughly Johnson scouted out the next leg of this trade.

Jon Najarian waffled on BBBY, saying, "There are no 1-day events," but to "hold it today," and you could be buying soon.

Steve Grasso said to hold DPZ, up 460% in 3 years.

Steve Grasso said HFC is one of those names where people aren't taking year-end profits, and so maybe there's another 3% upside. Jon Najarian said GME was stung because shooter games are not popular now. Tim Seymour said KMX is boosted because used-car margins now are better than new-car margins. Mike Khouw said that when "Visa didn't roll over as Discover did," he covered his V short.

Opining on a Singaporean pizza, Steve Grasso accomplished what every male dreams of — getting laughs out of Melissa Lee and Karen Finerman — dubbing it the "lard of the rings."

Karen Finerman said she had never heard of FOLD until her day's Pops & Drops assignment, but that's a good name for it.

Then Karen was heard to ask "who is this" regarding the singer of the "silver and gold" song.

Jon Najarian said there's been a lot of heavy activity in silver and gold, which he attributes to "a lot of people front-running Paulson."

Karen Finerman said she's doing Portfolios with Purpose competition for charity (there's that concept again), this one being the Michael J. Fox Foundation of which Karen and her husband have been such generous supporters that if/when you hear about the next Parkinson's breakthrough, you'll probably have them to thank, and suggested FINL.

Tim Seymour called that stock "sneaky," which didn't quite elicit a laugh and prompted Karen to regard it as "not quite lard of the rings."

Steve Grasso said if GS holds 129.82, it's got a shot at 140; that was his Final Trade. Mike Khouw said BA, Tim Seymour said GFI, Karen Finerman said C and Jon Najarian said SBAC.

Few things would look better on Melissa Lee than the Pajamagram leopard hoodie-footie, but no color — none, and we've been noticing these things for years — looks better on Mel than blue, including Thursday's exquisite top.

Gus Sauter didn’t exactly save his greatest soundbites for his last interview

In an example of something being a little overpromised and underdelivered, consider that Judge Wapner on Thursday's Halftime Report trumpeted Gus Sauter's final TV interview almost like it was a Paula Broadwell get.

But, about all Sauter would say is that in 2013, "we expect volatility," though he's "reasonably optimistic" about stocks. "We're more concerned about bonds, we do think that there's a bubble in the bond market," Sauter added.

And, he managed to say it's a good year for (surprise, surprise) index funds, a not-so-good year for actively managed funds, except Vanguard's actively managed funds are actually flat.

He may talk about it a lot, but Joe’s LPX kicks butt

Bob Pisani offered a prediction on the NYSE-ICE (that rhymes if you say it in a certain way) tango on Thursday's Halftime Report: "My bet is that sometime in the ... year, 2 years from now, they're gonna spin off or sell the cash trading, uh, stock trading business..."

Mark your calendars accordingly.

Anthony Grisanti told Jackie D that "this is tax-selling, this is profit-taking" in precious metals, while Rich Ilczyszyn predicted "more selling pressure" in silver and said it needs to close above the 200-day, which is now resistance, for him to get long.

Grisanti concluded, "On January 1st, I wanna own silver."

Joe Terranova got a chance to revisit 2 of his favorite themes — LPX and mid-continent refiners — in the latter half of Thursday's Halftime.

Reminding viewers that regarding LPX, "I've talked about this throughout the year," Terranova advised, "I think you stay with it," though move from the equity to the options.

Later, Mr. New World said HFC is part of the appealing mid-continent refiner space.

Stephanie Link refused to play the hold 'em or fold 'em game on BBBY and instead opted for a self-Fast Fire, "I was wrong on this name ... definitely a show-me story." Link said that at AIG, "the story gets very clean here," and the stock is "very cheap." Simon Baker said MRK could take a hit from something going on overseas. Mike Murphy said, "I'm a buyer of Greenbrier."

Be honest — have any of these people on Fast Money/Halftime actually visited a JCP store-within-a-store?

It's a sudden fad.

During the same episode of Thursday's Halftime Report in which "pyramid" was discussed in regard to a certain investor's opinion of a certain stock, guest Steve Kernkraut claimed JCP's store-within-a-store results amount to "cooked-up numbers that aren't realistic."

Under the theme of year's worst stocks, Kernkraut said JCP "probably will continue to be a disaster ... the stores are still empty."

Mike Murphy said the problem was that Ron Johnson overpromised, and now that the stock has been slammed, his inclination to put on a trade "would be to the long side."

Kernkraut acknowledged they might have better comps, "but can they make money."

Kernkraut told Judge not to expect a change at the top; "I think Ron is there for the long term," he said, predicting the stock would "trade in a range."

Sohn conference apparently doesn’t have the cash for a decent camcorder

Dylan Ratigan (boy, been a while since we've mentioned that name) used to be quite good at demanding of the Fast Money panelists, "What's. The. Trade."

Judge Wapner didn't exactly do that regarding HLF on Thursday's Halftime, but managed to elicit a couple of interesting thoughts anyway, primarily from Mike Murphy.

"I think the short interest is over 25%; I think you could get a short-covering rally," Murphy said.

Joe Terranova wasn't screaming "buy" but did suggest, "I think you cover the trade," then asserted, "Ackman made a mistake here in the language that he used" because the terminology he's using "implies stock's going to zero," such as an Enron.

Stephanie Link backed off, saying, "You can't be involved in this name," even though it's "probably oversold," because it has no "visibility."

Kate Kelly, who has done excellent reporting on this subject for a couple of days, acknowledged the clip of Ackman speaking was "not a great quality of video."

Joe buys GS, MS

Mike Murphy told Thursday Halftime Report viewers "I think you stay long," but the prospect of no cliff deal is not priced in (how's that double negative), so "you have to have puts under your holdings."

Simon Baker grumbled, "I'm not buying anything today," and boasted that his shop is sitting on a "big pile of cash."

Stephanie Link opined, "The market actually wants to go higher," while Joe Terranova resorted to his second-favorite newfound cliche, the contrast between "create alpha" and "chase beta" and said he's buying GS and MS.

"Even on a pullback, I think you buy the market," Mr. New World said.

More from Thursday's Halftime/Fast Money later.

[Wednesday, December 19, 2012]

She didn’t use the term, but it almost sounds like Karen is calling a generational buy in GM

Apparently feelin' it from the Halftime Report stock debates that started off pretty good but have stagnated in recent days, the Fast Money crew Wednesday did their own kind of battle again, this time Guy Adami (bear) vs. Karen Finerman (bull) on GM.

Adami's first argument was from the realm of the bizarre, wondering why some division of government would, if there's going to be a fiscal cliff deal, "sell a portion of their stock ahead of it ... maybe they know something that the rest of us folks don't know."

Then, Adami argued, "It's effectively the same company they were before the government bailed them out," which actually makes a decent amount of sense.

Finerman said she had a list of bullish reasons but preferred to just unload on the arguments Adami made; "I listen to those and I think, that doesn't make any sense to me ... I cannot believe that one hand of the government knows what the other one is doing and is front-running the fiscal cliff talks."

And, Finerman argued, "It is a different company," with a different cost structure that will allow them to profit, as well as a different industry.

But the money quote was Finerman's comparison to another bailout: It might be like AIG at 32.50; "we may not see that print again."

Brian Kelly halfheartedly refereed, "I personally prefer Toyota ... I guess GM's all right." Dan Nathan said, "I'm actually more on Guy's side here," predicting GM will be available in mid to low 20s. Mike Khouw said the tell to him is JCI, both in what the company said and that there was a big buyer of January 30 calls for 93 cents.

Karen: ‘Really isn’t anything wrong’ with Ackman telling people he’s going to short

Honestly, most of the HLF options analysis delivered by Jon Najarian and Dan Nathan on Wednesday's Fast Money went way over our head, but it was still interesting material.

The issue was whether the "massive put volume in this name" on Nov. 29, reported by Kate Kelly, was a sign of something nefarious connected to Bill Ackman's short announcement.

Najarian agreed "there was unusual activity," while Nathan confirmed, "The puts were sold, and stock was sold with it."

But each noted there could be hedging involved, and Mike Khouw stressed that the HLF premium was not as high as when it sold off on the Einhorn question(s), and this time the "short interest didn't spike," suggesting there's not a "really big buyer of puts."

Kelly said the battle is "likely to get even nastier tomorrow" when Ackman presents at a hastily arranged conference, and by the way Ackman will talk with Judge Wapner on Thursday.

Karen Finerman stated, in the form of a question to Kelly, that even if Ackman told his friends he was going to announce this, "there really isn't anything wrong with that."

Finerman revealed, "I like GNC," and suggested as her Final Trade buying it if it falls on this story, but "Herbalife, I'm not gonna touch."

Brian Kelly agreed that HLF is "a pretty difficult trade."

Steve Cortes’ analysis of solar is best, but they never ask him anymore

Ongoing FSLR critic Gordon Johnson is back at it.

Johnson, whose short FSLR calls had been some of the best on Fast Money, at least until June 2012, when the stock began its ascent, and he stopped being such a frequent guest, told Wednesday's crew that if you're short, hang in there, and if not, wait until after the January analyst day to get short.

The aggressive new management isn't to be believed, Johnson said; "they're saying things that are really just pie in the sky."

Johnson said one problem with the industry is that China keeps bailing out weak players. "You have massive oversupply in this market. You need companies to go out of business," Johnson said.

Johnson added his $.02 on the fiscal cliff, saying, "We actually do not think there's gonna be a resolution before January 1st," another element that will hurt solar, he said.

Brian Kelly said he agrees with Johnson to short FSLR after analyst day.

What happened to the 1,390?

The Fast Money gang wasn't terribly moved by Wednesday's market action, one way or another.

Brian Kelly said he's using options now because he doesn't want to be "holding the bag" if the cliff talks don't come through.

Guy Adami said that after the surge the last couple of days, "today was expected," but note that THC keeps working.

Dan Nathan said he's "cautiously short the market" and warned that there's a "level of complacency that could come to a head in the next few trading days" (translation: he's been listening to Jim Paulsen and Barry Bannister).

Karen Finerman said on Wednesday she was "net-net, probably a buyer," and isn't scared because even if stocks go lower from here, they should be higher at some point in 2013.

Mike Khouw stressed that the VIX is at "not exactly a depressed level," and he's a "seller on balance" the last couple days.

Flash: Gene Munster bullish on AAPL

Gene Munster told Wednesday's Fast Money crew not to worry about the iPhone, "we think December is fine," and then offered 3 reasons for a bullish case: increased dividend in April, presence of china Mobile, and Apple TV.

Permanent AAPL skeptic Dan Nathan said the 50 million expectations could lead to disappointment, and for those other 3 things, "what if they don't come by mid-year." Munster said he agrees that "if these things don't come through, we'd be negative."

Cable TV bull Chris Marangi said people talk about making money in stocks and cutting the cord with cable TV, but "neither one of 'em's probably true."

In fact, cable TV maintains a "broadband hedge" because people need the speed, Marangi said, and he's not even sure Apple is a foe of the cable companies. "Comcast has a lot of momentum," Marangi said.

Kelly’s winter drought play

Brian Kelly, identifying a little-watched agriculture development on Wednesday's Fast Money, made a spirited case for DBA, based on the Mississippi River drought, and/or "any type of weather shock."

Mike Harris said there's a positive "trend channel" in the stock market right now (tip: stocks have been going up), and so it's "smarter to be long than short here."

Karen Finerman dismissed the new hire or whatever it was JCP did, saying, "We are short, and long puts." Dan Nathan said NAV is "trading near the 52-week lows, you probably want to avoid it." Guy Adami said FDX may have another day, but "I would take this opportunity to get out of the name." Brian Kelly said AA would benefit if we're in the "very early innings" of a run on base metals. Mike Khouw said there could be "potentially a little bit left in there" of the KCG story.

Kelly declared VLO a "hold 'em" though he said he "wouldn't be surprised to see this pull back." Guy Adami gave mixed messages with GS; "I think you stay with the long position into their January release, and then you sell it."

Mike Khouw's Final Trade was to sell HFL puts if the premium gets high enough. Dan Nathan said short XLY, and Guy Adami said long WPI.

No ‘big boom’ in housing

Robert Shiller, apparently assigning himself the role of Mr. Anti-Irrational-Exuberance in the housing sector, told Judge Wapner by phone at the end of Wednesday's Halftime Report that we shouldn't expect another "big boom" in housing.

"I don't think that's in the cards," Shiller said; it's "not likely that we'll see a real boom."

"People pretend to know the future more than they do," Shiller complained, suggesting a lot of people (not the ones pretending to know the future) are resigned to renting.

Judge asked Shiller what it would take to get Shiller in the bullish camp for housing. "I'd like to see people getting optimistic again," Shiller said.

Brian Sullivan volunteers an opinion on Judge’s performance

Despite a weak afternoon of stock performance, Pete Najarian said on Wednesday's Halftime Report that "I continue to be in the banks ... I continue to be bullish."

Josh Brown said you could consider trying "broken stocks that have the chance to play catch-up," or his longtime favorite, "large-cap pharma."

Enis Taner said it's "much more of a micro market than a macro market." Jon Najarian said it's looking more like we're going to get a 20% capital gains rate.

Brian Sullivan tried to do this page's job, telling Judge Wapner, after being preempted 40 minutes by the White House press conference, that "this has been your best show, by far ... spectacular."

Enis Taner doesn’t have a whole lot of muscle behind his FDX bear case

Supposedly presenting the bear case, Enis Taner's comment on Wednesday's Halftime Report that China is the key to FDX proved enough — enough to convince Pete Najarian, if he hadn't already prejudged the case (which he had), that bullish brother Jon is correct on that stock.

"I do tend to be a bull on China," Pete said.

Taner argued that FDX is facing "margin compression," and complained about excuses citing an elementary teacher, "excuses are like..."

Dr. J said people had been penny-pinching, but "now I think express comes back," and Taner conceded that China could rev the stock.

Most viewers already had probably long since forgot the ORCL debate of a day ago, but Jon Najarian reiterated his support for Stephen Weiss' ORCL case; "I still believe he's right."

Pete still likes PSX

Josh Brown delivered the kind of praise you don't hear often during Wednesday's Halftime Report, calling DLPH "one of the most successful re-emergences from Chapter 11 reorganization that I've ever seen."

Enis Taner cautioned that STX is a "very cheap name but it might be a value trap."

Jon Najarian said that whatever GDI is doing, "It's not going as well as they'd hoped though," but the stock was actually climbing on the day.

Pete Najarian touted PSX despite the selloff. "Love this name ... I think it's a great opportunity," Pete said, also mentioning Lyondell.

Enis Taner's Final Trade was long CB. Pete Najarian said BX, Jon Najarian said HIG calls and Josh Brown said DVYE.

[Tuesday, December 18, 2012]

‘Short-term euphoric rally’

Matt McCormick told Tuesday's Fast Money that, given a cliff deal, he expects a "short-term euphoric rally in risk-oriented assets ... I would be a seller into that rally ... I think 2013's gonna be a bumpy ride."

A dividend specialist, McCormick likes JNJ, MCD and INTC.

He defended MCD for its cheap price points; "investors are buying down on food," and used the old Fast Money fertilizer argument that we haven't heard for a while, "people gotta eat" (so how come POT isn't at $375 right now).

McCormick added, "The only problem with Intel is it doesn't have an association with Apple right now." (Yes, because then it might be at a "generational" bottom.)


Guy Adami, observing a near-milestone birthday Tuesday, said on Tuesday's Fast Money, "The technicals say you have to be a buyer" of the market, and that suddenly 1,505 or even 1,545 looks to be within range.

Karen Finerman said, "We were a buyer." But Mike Khouw said, "We were a seller today," given the market being up 6% in a month.

Mike Santoli said he expects a "sell or a rest" on news of a fiscal cliff deal, and said the bigger issue isn't cliff details, but that "4th quarter earnings estimates have come down from expectations of 10% growth to 3 or 4% growth."

Tim Seymour, who along with Keith McCullough decided to talk all over the map even though it was Guy's birthday, said, "I think housing stocks are ridiculously expensive," then argued that if you believe in the cyclicals trade, transports and industrials have lagged while PHM looks "very, very expensive."

Keith McCullough said stocks and bonds have been in a "very predictable range," with bonds being oversold. But Tim Seymour insisted, "We are out of a predictable range in bonds." McCullough said that "bond yields made a series of, of basically higher lows."

McCullough said that in stocks, "hedge funds are shorting low, and covering high."

Guy Adami said LLL and LMT are names that work. Adami also said if you're long PCP, you can "hold 'em," "they seem to do everything right." Karen Finerman was heard to scoff that among the ways to play the hold 'em or fold 'em game, "you can just talk and never answer the question."

Once again, suspicions about the ‘generational’ word creeping in

Keith McCullough said on Tuesday's Fast Money that 550 is more likely for AAPL than 500. Karen Finerman said she's long AAPL and that she picks 550 only because it's an "easier bet" from this point.

Tim Seymour said 550 before 500, and Guy Adami agreed; "it's a momentum stock."

Keith McCullough said, with the dip to the low 500s, "I rarely get an opportunity to buy Apple and we did," except he has every opportunity in the world to buy AAPL from 9:30 a.m. Eastern to 4 p.m., 5 days a week, plus extended hours (unless he's talking about the "generational" thing).

Not just The Archies, but the Stars on 45

Tim Seymour, who did most of the talking on Tuesday's Fast Money from everything from sugar to Dungeons & Dragons despite it being Guy Adami's birthday, called ARCO a "great stock" and said, "I think you wait to buy it above the 50, 12.90."

Guy Adami said you can hang onto BHI, "I think there's a little more room on the upside." But Karen Finerman called ANF "just too expensive for me."

Keith McCullough, observing the TLT, said, "We cut our fixed income exposure to 0%." Mike Khouw said it's a "challenging environment for cigarette sales" and names like LO.

Guy Adami warned that while ORCL has been doing well it's approaching "35½, 36, which has been a top 10, 12 years ago," and maybe again back in 2009 or 2007. (Actually, 36 wasn't exactly the top 12 years ago, and most recently it was 2011, but we'll let it go.)

Karen’s argument had few catalysts, but Guy had even fewer in the opposite direction

Karen Finerman and Guy Adami conducted a debate on BAC on Tuesday's Fast Money that quite honestly, was hardly much better than the Stephen Weiss-Mike Murphy warmed-over ORCL discussion.

Finerman's argument, which included real estate strength and perhaps rising rates, essentially came down to, it's "still trading at a significant discount to book," and she dutifully revealed, "I still own it."

Adami admitted, "She makes a cogent argument," but he called housing data a "bit of a bogey" (and oh man, doesn't that make you want to visit the course even if Dave Tepper or Stephen Weiss is in your foursome), and questioned, "what about these delinquent loans on the books," as well as the "paltry" dividend.

Those didn't sound like great arguments, and Finerman even rebutted, "I think delinquent loans have continued to come down."

Keith McCullough sort of mocked the "boogeyman" argument and said this name is "underowned" by the institutions. But Adami said it's an "extraordinarily volatile stock for a bank," and it wouldn't surprise him to see 9½ or 10 in the name.

Mike Khouw reported a buyer of December 125 puts in GS for 80 cents. He said he'd stay with BAC, but he's not so sure about PHM.

McCullough: Buy the heavily shorted

Keith McCullough accomplished more than just (with Dennis Gartman, who wasn't on Tuesday's show while tending to his long-gold-in-yen-terms position while others are long gold in Jack in the Box terms) raising the male dress code on Tuesday's Fast Money while grinning from ear to ear throughout the program (must've made some money with the timestamps); he made a semi-interesting case for homebuilders, arguing it's a case of "Are you bullish enough?" He said the rally "can continue easily into the early part of next year," and most significantly, he's looking to "buy stocks that people are short ... it's a price-momentum game."

Tim Seymour suggested rather than doing that, consider his own good pick, TROX, which he said is "still very, very cheap" even after Tuesday.

Guy Adami cautioned that HD was negative on a big day for the market, but "I still think Home Depot works."

How soon until tablets cost $29?

Dan Ackerman visited the Nasdaq Tuesday to tell the Fast Money gang that cheaper tablets and devices are catching on.

"Everybody loves, for example, the Google Nexus 7, that's $199," said Ackerman, who said touchscreens are going to be/still are huge, expect more hybrid tablets/laptops, and look for 3D printing to be a hit.

Keith McCullough said FB has momentum because it's the "kinda stock you love to hate because it's expensive."

Seema Mody looked sooooo good, and told the Fast crew about things the Twitter crowd has learned this year. Guy Adami said this market is proof "the technicals matter ... they work," but didn't want to go into details. Tim Seymour (who else) started to say something about AAPL being seemingly invincible but was interrupted by Kate Kelly's breaking news on Getco and Knight.

Karen Finerman reiterated what has been a tremendous call for her and will undoubtedly make the year's top 20 list, RLGY: "I'm still long," Finerman said, calling it a cheaper housing play.

Finerman was then inexplicably Fast-Fired on a flat M call, with host Melissa Lee insisting (citing the crack team at Englewood Cliffs) that Macy's is donw 6% since Nov. 26. "It is not down 6%," Finerman insisted (she's right, try about 1%), and "I still like it."

Mike Khouw's Final Trade was to sell the February 19 calls in PHM. Tim Seymour said ARCO. Guy Adami said ROP and Keith McCullough said short XLE. The screen text curiously said Karen Finerman's pick was BAC, while she said either PM (which is what we think) or perhaps even "GM."

We missed Guy Adami's birthday (even though we actually knew when it was coming). We missed the start of Hanukkah, and several other Fast Money birthdays this fall/winter. If you've wondered whether it's a bit loopy for a Web page to try to track daily about 2 hours of TV stock market programming, you're not the only one wondering that; some times are busier and more difficult than others and that's kind of been the case in 2012, even worse when the news media is saturated with the kinds of stories we experienced last weekend. This page exists to talk stocks, review television, possibly point out impressive female TV appearances ("impressive" generally meaning about 100% of the time and there's no way to keep track of it all) and hopefully have a little fun. We're here because you are. Be safe, try to keep the holiday season as stress-free as possible, and keep coming back when you get a chance.

ORCL = weak choice for bull-bear debate

In what has become one of the best features of the Fast Money franchise — the Halftime Report stock debate, a big improvement over the old 30-seconds-to-make-your-case thing they used to do on Fast Money — Stephen Weiss touted ORCL on Tuesday with all the oomph of a Milk Dud.

Basically, Weiss said to buy because of valuation, and they have a knack for making good acquisitions.

Mike Murphy was skeptical, saying, "I think growing through acquisition, the stock's getting too much, uh, belief from the Street that it's gonna continue with good acquisitions," which quite frankly wasn't much of a bear case either.

Weiss responded by comparing it to CRM and saying he'd rather be long ORCL and "hope" it doesn't screw up acquisitions than own CRM and "pray" they don't screw it up.

Jon Najarian, as is getting to be the norm with all the observers, prejudged the case and said if the fiscal cliff is OK and Europe is or has bottomed, it's a "nice pick into 2013."

Basically what viewers should've taken away from this feature is that there is no compelling reason to do anything with this stock in either direction, and anyone who relied on this discussion to make an ORCL decision needs to find superior forms of entertainment.

Barry Knapp is probably overthinking things

Tuesday's Halftime Report gang was sort of split as to whether stocks will continue surging, with Stephen Weiss suggesting there's "maybe a day, maybe 2" left in the rally, and Joe Terranova offering, "I think the time to buy was a couple of weeks ago" before his now-standard cliche, concern about "reallocations out of fixed income."

Mike Murphy, said with a remarkable air of confidence that "we're not gonna get a sell on the news event," and that if we cross 1,450, then it's 1,475 and 1,480 in sight.

And, Jon Najarian said, "We keep moving to the upside."

Guest Barry Knapp however complained that people are overlooking the facts of what Washington figures to be doing; there's "way too much focus on the timing of the deal." He noted that Boehner's proposal seems to indicate taxes on small business going up, and that no one's talking about a payroll tax cut extension, which will lead to a "fairly significant fiscal drag."

"I don't see a short-term, kick-the-can-down-the-road, avoid-the-worst-case scenario as significantly different from our base case, which was a couple hundred billion dollars of fiscal drag," Knapp said.

Despite that comment, Joe Terranova asked Knapp to (re-)quantify the drag on the economy, and Knapp said $200 billion.

"I don't think that's very much," Terranova said.

Knapp cautioned, "I think the first move in 2013 will be lower," and disagreed with David Tepper's golf score macro view, saying stocks are trading at 15x trailing, and "virtually every metric you look at, over the last 30 years, the stock market is rich."

Terranova said, "If there is a correction, I think there is a tremendous amount of buying underneath the market that wants to step in."

Mike Murphy said he added to F, EBAY and V. Jon Najarian said he's long WFC and BAC and wishes he had gotten the BAC terms that Warren Buffett did.

Sounding suspiciously like we’re doing the ‘generational low’ thing again

One thing Tuesday's Halftime gang mostly agreed on is that AAPL is going higher.

Judge Wapner asked Joe Terranova whether it'll be closer to 550 or 500 at year-end.

"Interesting; I don't know the answer to that," Terranova said.

"Take a guess," Wapner prodded.

"I'm not gonna," Terranova whiffed, but he said the "beta trade" is actually in CRUS, QCOM and GLW; "I am long Corning."

Mike Murphy flat-out stated, "Apple closes the week closer to 550 than 500." Jon Najarian agreed and even suggested 575. Stephen Weiss said he agreed with the 550 but agreed with Terranova that QCOM is the superior play.

Terranova later claimed the AAPL bears will say they covered under $500, but they really didn't.

Cut a deal, get Cabinet promotion

The Ilchmeister, Rich Ilczyszyn, told Jackie D on Tuesday's Halftime Report that "if we close above 1,440, I think that opens up the door potentially to yearly highs" ... and then botched the Title Department by referring to "Secretary Boehner."

Anthony Grisanti started to talk about "austerity" concerns before he was drowned out into Shields & Yarnell land by an utterly rare and classic slow sound fade.

Ilczyszyn said he expected last year to see the rotation begin out of bonds into stocks and was wrong, and it's "way too early to say that" now.

NOK: The next RIMM?

Stephen Weiss on Tuesday's Halftime Report wasn't exactly complimenting Meredith Whitney for realizing bank stocks are going up; "she did a great job creating the bottom," Weiss said, adding, "I'm glad she's along for the ride, welcome to the party, got here a little late."

Joe Terranova suggested GS looks like it might take out 130.

Steve Grasso, who sold HPQ Monday, said he's looking to re-enter but waiting on technicals and/or a market selloff.

Jon Najarian said BYD was moving with "very fast activity" in the 6, 7, 8 calls.

Stephen Weiss said SWK was rising because it's "along for the ride" with the markets.

Mike Murphy said normally he'd say take profits in NOK, but you "may want to follow this name" because it might have recent RIMM potential.

Joe Terranova noted Carl Icahn's interest in ARII and previously GBX and said, "his only obstacle is gonna be a regulatory antitrust hurdle."

Francisco Blanch fails to make a gold call in a timely soundbite

Francisco Blanch insisted on Tuesday's Halftime Report that he can see Brent averaging 110 next year and WTI averaging 90, but it was his suggestion that a WTI fall to 50 in the next 18-24 months is possible that stoked the Halftime crew.

"I don't see it, there's no way it's gonna happen," said Stephen Weiss.

Blanch and Weiss then sparred over an extremely insidery exchange of Cushing vs. something or other before Blanch returned to the shale production theme and insisted, "Something has to give ... we either start exporting crude oil," or, presumably, the price tumbles.

Blanch struggled to make a point about gold in limited time, but was basically longer-term positive. Joe Terranova said he couldn't see a combination $50 WTI and $2,000 gold but said PXP and EOG are oil names to watch.

Cute Kathy Lien said "1.32 is a good level" to get long euro/dollar.

Herb Greenberg said Mark Pincus is his 4th-worst CEO of the year.

Jon Najarian's Final Trade was Elan, based on "very strong buying" of the January 11 calls.

Joe Terranova praised Najarian, "he's such a classy gentleman," and touted MA. Mike Murphy said ADT, and Stephen Weiss both rekindled the Floyd Trade (HK) and said he's bought YUM the last 2 days.

[Monday, December 17, 2012]

‘At least 12’ for BAC

National news being what it is, stock-trading can seem less than trivial. While far more important events are and should be on people's minds, this page, like the shows it reviews, will continue on, as straightforward as possible, if nothing else to offer diversion during some of the world's most grim moments.

The most effusive call of the day on Monday's Fast Money came at the very end, when Pete Najarian pounded the table for BAC.

"I don't think it stops until at least 12," said Najarian, who said he continues to own and continues to add.

Scott Nations said he's been "long Bank of America and Citi for a long time," and that the stocks still have a "long way to go." But Nations said best-in-class JPM is worth a look.

Tim Seymour was bullish on markets but not so much on banks; referring to Meredith Whitney's note, Seymour said, "I don't think it's game-on again," but there are macro reasons to get long the market, and if the 10-year yield tops 1.75%, "it's a very bullish sign."

Dan Nathan was about the lone skeptic (other than Chris Whalen, below), saying the banks have been "out of control" and that "there's a lot of good news in these stocks" already, and the U.S. banks still require confirmation from Europe. But Nathan said he expressed his concerns in the form of put-buying in the Q's at the end of the day, expecting "continued underperformance there."

Brian Kelly said "I was a buyer" of stocks on Monday, in part because while in the past money had gone out of bonds into nothing, "today you didn't see that" and the money actually went into stocks.

‘I know people on the Street who have put everything they’ve got into Bank America and Citi’

Chris Whalen, who now works for Carrington Holdings (it's a "large non-bank servicer/lender ... this is the future," he says), indicated on Monday's Fast Money that banks might be pricing in a too-rosy scenario as their mortgaging options morph into dividend stories.

With BAC at $11, Whalen said, "It's worth a buy if you go to the franchise value story, you like that story, and you think they're gonna escape the worst scenario with the litigation," Whalen said, explaining he wouldn't plunge into BAC and C in his own account, but "I know people on the Street who have put everything they've got into Bank America and Citi."

Whalen made some eloquent points about difficulties banks figure to have with foreclosures and the risk/rewards of issuing jumbo mortgages, particularly in states of pricey real estate. He agreed with Tim Seymour, "We've got a nightmare thanks to Elizabeth Warren."

$35 target on USG

New guest Bob Wetenhall delivered compelling commentary about the mortgage-interest deduction on Monday's Fast Money, saying the million-dollar threshold could be lowered to $750,000 perhaps with minimal impact, but $500,000 would be big trouble for housing, but don't worry, "our general view is, there has to be some kind of deal," and the mortgage interest deduction is "popular on both sides of the aisle."

Tim Seymour said continued low interest rates suggest in his mind a "bubblicious" scenario yet again in housing. Wetenhall said "you're absolutely right," but stressed, "I'm not sure we're frothy yet," and "We are very bullish on homebuilder equities."

Wetenhall said he thinks "pent-up consumer demand" will help USG; he has a 35 target and still sees "continued upside."

Scott Nations reported a big buyer of January 27 XHB calls for 37 cents.

‘More upside’ to NOK

It's been a long time, but somehow the much-maligned phonemakers are suddenly looking good to the Fast Money crew.

Pete Najarian said he doesn't care about emerging markets and "burner" phones, he thinks NOK has found some footing, and "I think this company has more upside."

Scott Nations, who famously called Research in Motion a take-under around $5 when it was far more than that probably about 2 years ago, reiterated, "I have been incredibly tough on RIMM," but now he thinks it will continue to rise. "This is a trade; I would not invest my 401(k) in RIMM," Nations clarified.

Dan Nathan suggested the new RIMM phone might be like the Windows 8 mobile story, trading up ahead of time, then stumbling; "I think you could see the same thing."

QCOM ‘great, great pick’

Tim Seymour said on Monday's Fast Money that he likes BIDU in the better-trade-than-AAPL department, calling the SEC probe of Chinese names "overdone."

Brian Kelly offered ORCL, using the Patty Edwards redundancy "at this point in time" and predicting, "if it can get through 32½, on a momentum basis, you can get a real nice breakout."

Dan Nathan said he took out call spreads in QCOM, a "great, great pick for 2013," and made it his Final Trade. Kelly added ARMH; "I like them as well."

Trumpeting TROX

Tim Seymour said on Monday's Fast Money that the move in JCP is "not that big of a move ... stay sale."

Seymour said HNZ is good; "I would hold this stock" for its dividend, and he also likes Mondelez. Seymour reiterated a good recent call, TROX, calling it "ridiculously cheap" and claiming "a lot of shorts are still bottled up."

Brian Kelly agreed with TROX, saying he'd "much rather own this than a Sherwin Williams ... how many rooms can you paint."

Kelly also tentatively endorsed HFC, "that's a hold 'em," saying there's "probably a little bit more to go in this," though he prefers oil. Kelly said AIG is "OK" but would take profits, and he made JJC his Final Trade.

Dennis Gartman said the new ETF isn't that important to copper's price, but global growth is, and he sees nickel and tin strengthening. Gartman also said he'd trade copper futures, not the ETF, but the ETF is OK to retail investors.

Tim Seymour said, "I'd play the diversified miners," namely BHP and also VALE. Seymour's Final Trade was WMT.

Pete Najarian said to relax with PHM, "I don't think you necessarily have to chase this name here." Najarian's WLT trade was recalled but he revealed, "I'm actually out of Walter now" and in CLF and ANR for higher beta; "I still like the coal space." Najarian took a double-hit for his pink-shirt bull call on PBR. "Awful call on that one," Najarian said, but "I still like the name."

Dan Nathan said the story in CBOU could "keep on going a little bit." Scott Nations said HPQ took a "double-whammy today." Nations' Final Trade was to buy "lightly" DFS.

Amelia Bourdeau advises going long dollar/yen at 83.40; "I think we can have another run higher."

Seema Mody asked the panel about airlines. Brian Kelly, amid a joke that didn't work about tiny bottles, said they've "had quite a run here," and he likes hotel stocks such as MAR and HOT better.

Melissa Lee, in blue, and Mody, in red, looked phenomenal.

‘They still see 15% upside’ in AAPL

Monday's Halftime Report crew took a crack at the quickly revised view on AAPL by the 3-headed Citi machine, and didn't sound too impressed.

"I don't know which of the 3 of them was more vociferous about downgrading," said Josh Brown, but neverthless, "it's an oversold name."

Stephen Weiss pointed out, "They still see 15% upside and minimal downside ... I like it long-term still, I don't own it."

Stephanie Link said some of Citi's descriptions "might be semantics," but in the low 500s, the stock is "very interesting."

Joe Terranova freely admitted, "My characterization of calling this a generational low was absolutely wrong," and he has sold half his position in quarterly increments recently, but based on data, "the iPhone story really is- is not that muted."

One of those Citi analysts, Glen Yeung, told Scott Wapner that when they were on several weeks ago, "the call wasn't especially positive," and then Yeung, so grim he barely managed a smile when Wapner filled in the blanks for Stephen Weiss' questions, quibbled over whether part of Citi's iPhone forecast is a "neutral" or "negative" view.

Brown doubts sell-the-news

Josh Brown said on Monday's Halftime Report that he disagrees with Joe Terranova and (from Friday) Michael Santoli in that he doesn't see funds already expecting a cliff breakthrough. "I don't think any of this is pricing in an actual deal yet," Brown said, and "I can't picture a sell-the-news reaction."

Stephanie Link said she agrees with David Tepper that the worldwide economy is looking up for stocks and advised viewers not to make bets on the cliff, "just buy the news. Period."

Stephen Weiss said "the only place I don't agree with Dave is on the golf course, because I know I'm a better player than he is," which doesn't make a large amount of sense, but Weiss said Tepper has zeroed in on housing and autos as fueling the economy.

Josh Brown said Tepper indicated there's a put in the form of lower ECB rates, and accepting that, "The obvious trade is, is, cyclicals, it's high-beta, it's smaller cap vs. larger cap."

Weiss said to just buy the S&P 500. Joe Terranova said to buy the S&P 500 only if there are flows out of fixed income. Stephanie Link said, "I think the commodities continue to do well."

‘You can own the airlines’

Josh Brown said on Monday's Halftime Report that the issue with JCP recently was a stock having run out of sellers. Stephen Weiss argued, "It's still egregiously overvalued," and chided Stephanie Link for recommending the stock, but Link insisted she recommended it lower, and "If you get traffic in the stores, that stock is going much higher."

Josh Brown wasn't so high on another controversial name, HPQ. "I see no reason to be involved in this name," Brown said.

Stephen Weiss praised JBLU and said, "I still think you can own the airlines." Weiss added, "I'm not goin' to a McDonald's, and I still don't like the stock," but he does like THC, "I think it's got a lot of upside from here."

Stephanie Link said SBUX is the name to watch on the CBOU news. Joe Terranova said the same for RHT on the CPWR news. Terranova also said LNG and CQP look good, "Own both those symbols."

High praise for BAC

Jeff Kilburg got to join Jackie DeAngelis' Futures Now during Monday's Halftime Report and wasn't asked to opine about gold, but Treasurys.

"Right now, I'm focused being short these Treasury futures, in the 10-year as well as the 30-year," Kilburg said.

Anthony Grisanti said he agrees with David Tepper that the bond market looks rich, and that 10-year yields, if a few things happen, could be 1.8 or 1.9.

Stephen Weiss touted BAC. "I still own it; I bought a little more last week ... buy the banks," Weiss said.

Josh Brown said that while there have been traders in BAC, it's establishing a base, "a lot of people are willing to make that multi-year bet" and not take profits.

Joe Terranova said he thinks what's moving bank stocks is that the "return to normalized earnings" (that phrase actually hasn't been heard in a while) is occurring faster than the Street expected, and to "stay with 'em."

CAT and the ‘rising tide’

Stephen Weiss and Joe Terranova sparred over CAT on Monday's Halftime Report; Weiss opened with not particularly exciting arguments that the company has "pressure on margins," and "Street estimates are way too high."

Terranova countered that CAT estimates were too high with the stock at 78 in July, but "now the estimates have actually come down," and in North America in fact, "they're gaining significant market share; they are just crushing Deere."

Asked to pick a winner, Stephanie Link conceded she wasn't fully impartial; "We own it," she said, and stressed that "margins actually positively surprised in their last quarter." Josh Brown said Weiss made good arguments but the stock is likely to move in an upward market with a "rising tide effect ... I have to go with Joe."

Terranova: Watch HIBB

Guest Bill McNabb of Vanguard didn't offer much in the way of stock picks on Monday's Halftime Report but did say he thinks the fund industry is placing a "real emphasis on costs," favoring the index format.

McNabb outlined a "20/20 by 2020" goal for government revenue/debt negotiators, and said he very much thinks stocks could average 7-9% over the next decade.

Josh Brown somewhat clumsily pointed out that "Marissa Mayer is getting the benefit of the doubt" at Yahoo; Scott Wapner asked, "Ya think?"

But Brown said "this could be mid-20s," and while it's an advertising stock, it's been a good year for media names. "Asia" (not even Alibaba) only came up at the end of the conversation.

Joe Terranova took a Fast Fire for DKS. "Bottom line? I got stopped out, which you know what that means, stock's going back up," Terranova joked. Stephen Weiss asked if the same could be done for Macy's because he needs that one to rise.

Stephanie Link's Final Trade was SLB. Joe Terranova said HIBB, Stephen Weiss said SCCO and Josh Brown said JNJ.

Review of Judge’s ‘Hotel’

While this weekend was sobering, to say the least, in terms of national news, this site is pledged for numerous reasons to review CNBC programming and business/media in general, and so we took a look at Scott Wapner's "Hotel: Behind Closed Doors At Marriott," which premiered last week.

Honestly — and we'd love to say otherwise — "Hotel" is flat, uninspiring, and the program's most important Q&A is ambiguous and botched. Either Marriott somehow made too good of an offer to refuse, or a CNBC scout picked the wrong company to profile.

Our review is right here, but as always, you should watch one of the airings and judge for yourself.

[Friday, December 14, 2012]

Sell the news on cliff deal?

Michael Santoli joined Friday's Halftime Report after the sobering news update and said he thinks the market is in "probably in search of a little bit of an excuse" for a selloff, and suggested a fiscal cliff deal could actually produce "more of a sell-on-the-news response."

Josh Brown said it's an interesting argument, but "my inclination would be a thousand-point Dow rally" on such a deal.

Santoli did suggest a stock regardless. "I like Johnson Controls," he said, as a "play on the global auto cycle."

Bellini: FB sentiment surging

Heather Bellini, who hasn't been on Fast Money/Halftime for a long time, visited with Friday's Halftime Report to trumpet Facebook.

"I do think sentiment has changed tremendously and their mobile strategy is starting to show signs of taking off," Bellini said, adding that "sponsored stories in general are gonna be a much bigger piece of the business in 2013."

JJ Kinahan asked if AAPL purported tax-selling is helping FB. Bellini said yes, but drew a bigger contrast to MSFT and GOOG, which she said on mobile are getting "lower revenue per unit," whereas FB is somehow getting "30 to 40 times the pricing that you get on the right-hand rail desktype- desktop-type ad."

Bellini wasn't too hot on GOOG, saying it will be a "challenge" to grow margins.

Simon Baker said he agrees with Bellini on FB but not GOOG. "I think Google is very very strong," Baker said.

JJ Kinahan said "I am long Facebook" and conceded it's been a "momentum stock, absolutely."

Pete: AAPL below 500

Pete Najarian on Friday's Halftime Report said there's concern that AAPL has been "overtalked," but "this selloff has been pretty extreme."

Najarian contended it's "for tax reasons," but admitted he's not plunging in yet; "I'm waiting ... I think it actually gets below 500."

Josh Brown stressed that the stock has been downgraded for a change for fundamental and not price reasons. JJ Kinahan said there's disappointment over no special dividend and that 505 is the "big level."

Simon Baker offered, "I think there could be a lot more downside momentum on this stock before upside."

Occasional guest Steve Milunovich explained the fundamental issue, "the production for the iPhone in particular is coming down again," but he also said, "for 6 to 12 months, we still very much think the stock will be higher."

Perhaps the hypergrowth is over, Milunovich suggested, explaining, "I think there's a maturation here and you just can't expect that 50% up every year in Apple stock."

Pete Najarian said the AAPL reports sound like positives for NOK and RIMM, "maybe they actually do have a chance." Josh Brown said he continues to like QCOM, saying that whatever phones are being purchased, there's a "very high likelihood, 9 out of 10 chance, Qualcomm's chip set is in the product," and he wants to own the "guts" of the product. But he conceded QCOM is pretty big itself; "we're not expecting a 50% upside move in Qualcomm."

Baker: WMT fading

Pete Najarian battled Simon Baker on WMT in another quality Halftime Report debate, with Pete offering 3 bullish reasons: "Neighborhood friendly stores," the company's shareholder-friendly approach, and the "real trump card right now is Vudu."

Baker's argument fizzled from the get-go when he brought up the Mexico bribery as an issue, when that's what kick-started the stock. He said it's been a "yield trade," and "that trade in my belief is gonna be over next year." But he called it a "good little company."

Josh Brown tried to play middle ground but ultimately judged Pete the winner; "this is a stock that people wanna own."

Scott Wapner suggested that Mike Duke complaining about the fiscal cliff is going to be part of a "parade of excuses" we'll be hearing from CEOs.

‘Important level’ for JCP

Upscale mall exec Bill Taubman told Judge Wapner on Friday's Halftime Report that shopping on Black Friday was robust but "substantially weakened right after Black Friday," and that retailers might have "pulled some business forward."

Taubman pronounced the mid-tier shopper as "solid" and said the NRF is projecting sales up 2-3% for the year, "I think that's probably right."

Simon Baker said he doesn't get a "cuddly warm feeling" about BBY.

JJ Kinahan said the FSLR pop is a sign "R&D is working and working very well." Pete Najarian called PAY an "opportunity." Simon Baker said "I'm a believer" in the China story's impact on X. Josh Brown said SLB is part of a lagging energy sector; "I really don't see any reason to jump into this."

Brown said the 21.43 level that JCP was at "will be a very important level." Pete Najarian said CLF is benefitting from the "reactivated" global growth story, and "I think there's a lot more left with Cliffs." Simon Baker said FDO "doesn't look so good."

Jim Iuorio subbed for Rich Ilczyszyn in the Futures Now hit, saying, "I'm short-term negative crude ... mostly that it hasn't rallied off China." Anthony Grisanti said "I like crude oil" and said it has "held up very well." Mandy Drury subbed for Jackie DeAngelis and looked wonderful in red top, but it's impossible to cheer anything on a day such as this.

Josh Brown's Final Trade was QCOM. Pete Najarian said ANR, Simon Baker said NVDA and JJ Kinahan suggested GS.

[Thursday, December 13, 2012]

Anthony Scaramucci: BBY deal gets done at 18-20

At least a once-a-week occurrence nowadays, the mythical BBY buyout once again surfaced on Thursday's Fast Money, largely to skepticism.

Tim Seymour doubted it, suggesting probably nothing until August 2013, and "I don't think the offer comes anywhere near where the bid is."

Guy Adami agreed; "I'm in the fiction camp."

Anthony Scaramucci though claimed he has come around on this one, changing his "fiction" call (from the bigwig conference) to "fact," predicting, "I think this thing goes off at 18 to 20."

Mike Khouw said whatever happens, there's a big buyer of the January 15 calls for 50 cents.

Sounds like Marc Chaikin was quietly making a Gundlach-esque case against AAPL

Marc Chaikin, whose previous Power Gauge picks on Fast Money have maybe been a little spotty, asserted on Thursday that the market has been living through 2012 on a 3-pronged formula of presidential-election cycle, being undervalued compared to Europe, and Apple, and "all 3 of those are gonna be missing in 13."

Chaikin never said, and no one ever asked, what kind of percentage gain/loss "missing" translates into for AAPL.

Anthony Scaramucci asked an excellent question, whether the Fed doesn't account for a lot of strength, and invited Chaikin to rebut. Chaikin didn't really actually rebut, saying it's a 4-year-old bull market and thus a "great time to play defense" amid uncertainty (which likely will be highly "certain" in about 2 weeks).

Chaikin said there's an "interesting unknown dichotomy ... retail stocks tend to underperform between Thanksgiving and Christmas." (Great, but getting a little late for that one.)

Meanwhile, the Chaikin Power Gauge is "very bearish" on TIF, "bearish" on COH and "very bullish" on YHOO, the stock that keeps going up though bulls can't even really explain why.

Where were all those enterprise software bulls when the stock was $12

Steve Grasso, cautioning viewers recently about YHOO's $19.15 level, revealed on Thursday's Fast Money, "I actually bought some today," his 1st leg of purchase, but suggests if the stock falls under $19, you should exit.

But Grasso's most effusive (by far) case was for HPQ, even suggesting mid-$20s for a stock that like YHOO is one the bulls are having trouble explaining why it's going up.

Grasso first suggested, "There's a lot going on here," then told Tim Seymour, who pointed out already "this is a massive move," that "I think it's the focus from going from PC to enterprise software."

Meanwhile, Guy Adami really likes NFLX, saying it overshoots to the downside and upside, but the latter's in play here. "Technically we're on the brink of that ... the stock is sort of in play here, wouldn't be surprised to see it north of a hundred bucks."

Walter Price evidently made an impression on Mike Khouw

Tim Seymour, who's paying way too much attention to Capitol Hill news reports these days, said on Thursday's Fast Money he finds the political "volleys" to be "quite pathetic."

Steve Grasso said a lot of people are waiting for a really "good flush" — which he defined as the S&P 500 dropping a 30-handle — before plunging back into the market.

Guy Adami said the range is still in play and we're "set up" for another visit to 1,390.

But in an assembling of back-from-the-brink trades (which sounds like Momentum City to be totally honest), Tim Seymour asserted "financials are going higher," Anthony Scaramucci backed BAC and RIMM, and Mike Khouw even saluted WDC, because "cloud storage is disk-driven," and he suggested a WDC call spread as a bullish bet.

What does counting wine bottles have to do with delivering an apartment?

Ben Silverman visited with the Fast Money gang Thursday to spotlight 2 stocks you've never heard of (ALSN, MHO) and 1 more (HBI) that Tim Seymour is well familiar with, based on the theme of insider selling.

Silverman, whose audio was a bit weak, said HBI chief Richard Noll has long been a buyer, but recently he finally unloaded some shares in an "out-of-the-blue sale."

Steve Grasso said what you've heard on Fast Money countless times, that there's many reasons for selling, but only one for buying.

Dolly Lenz, on location at the Nasdaq, said things are heating up in real estate: "It is so busy that literally last night I was in a wine cellar counting bottles at 1:20 a.m. to prepare the apartment for delivery this morning."

Ah. "Literally." (For those who thought she might be speaking metaphorically.)

Lenz said it's Americans, not foreigners, taking advantage of 2012 tax rates by offering year-end deals, while foreigners are buying stuff that isn't ready yet.

As a strong indication that Lenz deals with the 1%, she said it's not so much primary homes that are selling, but "2nd, 3rd, 5th, 8th, you know."

It's that "You know" category we strive for the most.

Next year, Lenz predicted, "Price-wise, we're higher. Volume-wise, we could be lower."

Yuge gains in PSX

Guy Adami, reiterating what has been a great call for himself and the Najarians, said on Thursday's Fast Money to stick with PSX, "I still think it's a monster ... I think the stock moves higher in the next week or so."

Steve Grasso said he got long GOOG below 700, and "I'm staying long."

Anthony Scaramucci, rather quiet on Thursday's program, said JCP is benefitting from a "classic short squeeze."

Mike Khouw, a veritable chatterbox this day, called SAM a "good company but not a good stock ... I wouldn't be a buyer here."

Tim Seymour, an uncontrollable chatterbox on most days, said "I like Wal-Mart right here on the chart," but Khouw knocked high-end retailers RL, SKS and TIF and decided "I guess I'm just a Grinch."

Seymour advised "definitely keep riding" GMCR, then was defiant about his NEM bust (by the way when was the last time Dennis Gartman said "for the first time now that I can remember in a long time the gold miners are setting up better than gold the commodity (which I'm long in yen terms)" (and other people might be long in Jack in the Box terms)) and explained, "The entire sector was certainly a risk, and miners have been clubbed," but called it "very, very cheap here."

Mike Khouw's Final Trade was to sell HYG. Tim Seymour said sell RSX, Guy Adami said BKW, Anthony Scaramucci said RIMM ("look for a big spike") and Steve Grasso said YHOO.

Mel Lee — who looked great in black and necklace and especially new hairstyle Thursday even while caving on behalf of CNBC to the Warren Buffett letter that didn't appear to have been heavily scrutinized (we don't have a clue; we just think it's odd that news organizations are saying this is a tax advantage and CNBC is taking Buffett's word that it isn't) — told Jane Wells, who was wearing a sharp sweater, "Wear that in New York City, see what kind of looks you'll get."

Disco Dow

What's depressing about all the purported stock market parallels to the 1970s is that nobody says the Steelers are going to enjoy the same kind of redux.

(In fact, to be completely honest, after that stink-fest, suck-ass garbage pile of football on Sunday, it's looking more like a 1960s do-over.)

On Thursday's Halftime, in a segment curiously buried until the end of the program (that tells you what Judge thinks about it), Tom Fitzpatrick had the audacity to forecast a 20% drop in the Dow in 2013, conditions being "very similar to what we saw in the mid, late '70s."

Fitzpatrick also sees gold going to $2,400 (so how come he wasn't on Futures Now).

Joe says most Fast Money viewers are ‘deficient’ in risk management

These Halftime Report stock debates have actually been pretty good, but few have questioned the capabilities of the viewer like the RIMM faceoff Thursday between Josh Brown and Joe Terranova.

Brown defended the stock, starting with a Brag Trade from last time at 11 then saying it's a "little bit nuanced here," the stock is "short-term, very overbought," but he thinks you can still ride it into a sell-the-news trade in January.

Joe Terranova apparently thinks it's too risky and said if you're "interested in chasing beta, then absolutely knock yourself out," but he'd prefer to be "creating Alpha" and that's not happening in this name ... "this is Dave Kingman" (reinforcing the day's 1970s theme).

Terranova said he just doesn't want viewers to wake up in March and find the RIMM shares they bought near 14 at 9.

"There's no risk management when you do something like that," Brown countered.

Continuing a theme of suggesting the other day that Doug Kass can trade AAPL better than viewers, Terranova responded, "Most of the viewers that watch this show, they're deficient in terms of risk management." (Borderline possible translation: Index funds for everyone; enjoy watching the show for entertainment purposes only.)

"Which I think is our job to make them better investors," Brown said.

The problem with Joe's commentary, however accurate he might've been, was that he never actually addressed the point of debate, whether Brown is right or wrong that the stock is going up short-term, and this time Stephen Weiss wasn't around to declare a winner (or that JCP is going to single digits).

AAPL ‘never going to have a TV project’

Porter Bibb, one of our favorite Halftime Report guests (maybe not as favorite as Barry Bannister but close), reiterated his startling contra-prediction on AAPL on Thursday's Halftime Report.

"They don't have a TV project, and they're never going to have a TV project in terms of a flat-screen set," Bibb said, arguing this is a good thing, that the players in this market aren't making money on TVs.

Meanwhile, "There's a lot of growth left in Apple," Bibb said, and "I think Apple right now is a steal," a stock that by 2013 will be "scraping $700 again" (note he did NOT say "close to a generational buy").

Traders seemed more interested in Bibb's view of GOOG. Pointing to previous comments on the show about slowing advertising, "You've got Google going up and they oughta be going down," Bibb said.

Josh Brown questioned if GOOG can take on the cable-TV system we know today. Bibb said GOOG has the resources and wherewithal to do so and be even better, but "whether or not they ever roll it out is a huge problem," given that they'll have to deal with the FCC, entrenched cable interests, etc.

Asked to pick between AAPL and GOOG, Joe Terranova, asking himself a question, said, "Longer term, where are my investment dollars, they are in Apple," but he thinks GOOG is fine.

Most would say ‘low barriers to entry’ isn’t the best business model

William Lauder made it work for all the constituencies in the high-end-retail universe on Thursday's Halftime Report, saying it's not a blockbuster environment (moderate expectations for Wall Street) but that "we've got great confidence for the last 10 days" (your friends are buying nice things so feel free to go shop).

Lauder also managed to say "long term" about 4 or 5 times (translation: Don't punish our stock too much if this season is weak).

Yet, Lauder seemed to get tripped up in terminology when he said he likes the prospects of high-end retail in part because of "relatively low barriers to entry," where shoppers can get something for like $17, $18, $25, $30, and "this is not a huge investment."

Joe Terranova asked Lauder about challenges of advertising contraction in 2013, a question that didn't make much sense to the amateurs around here because we figure Lauder is probably an advertiser itself, but what do we know (it made far more sense when Porter Bibb brought up the subject in relation to GOOG).

Terranova also pointed out that a lot of gains in high-end retail have been in dividend form. Stephanie Link said COH is a bit cheaper (not "downmarket" like Mel Lee says) and so, "look at Coach."

When is the Fed simply going to hire Steve Liesman as chief spokesman

In a tiresome rehash of day-old Fed news, Steve Liesman on Thursday's Halftime Report managed to make a winner of everyone's insignificant commentary.

Joe Terranova delivered by far the most curious analogy to the Fed's announcement, likening it to a "trader who walks into my office with an idea" and how he would evaluate it; "the message from the Federal Reserve to traders is now lost."

Stephanie Link said "I think the Fed is gonna continue to keep rates low." Liesman praised Stephanie's call and said it's about the data and not the calendar now, and "Joe is also right" about the message.

Josh Brown said "I wouldn't be surprised if the market needs some time to digest," and rightly made the best point of the bunch, that people are complaining after only "6 hours worth of action."

Gold Now, with Jackie DeAngelis

Anthony Grisanti said on Thursday's Halftime Report that "I will still stay long" in gold; it's important to note that "these are longs liquidating positions" and not new shorts.

Rich Ilczyszyn gold technicals are good long-term but "short term probably not," and when it breaks out of the range in either direction it'll really move, but that won't happen until 2013.

"About $15 lower, I'm a buyer," Grisanti said. Ilczyszyn said he'd keep buying at the 200-day until that fails.

Dr. J: Buy HPQ Dec 15 calls

Josh Brown said on Thursday's Halftime Report he has a "distrust" of what he hears from Washington, D.C., podiums, and is sure there's a "deeper level conversation going on."

Jon Najarian maybe isn't so certain of that though, opining that John Boehner and Harry Reid need to get "out of that alternative reality that John McAfee is in."

Stephanie Link said IP will benefit from a price hike, and Thursday's action "really validates the acquisition with Temple-Inland. Jon Najarian said some people think the offer for CLWR could rise and said if you're going to play BBY use calls. Josh Brown said Deutsche Bank probably doesn't see a lot more opportunity in LXK.

Stephanie Link said she'd sure like to get COST at 95 and YUM under 65.

Willie Williams said he likes the dollar against the euro.

Jon Najarian's Final Trade was buying HPQ December 15 calls. Josh Brown said IVW (for all those with the risk-management skills to own it), Joe Terranova said GLW (for all those with the risk-management skills to own it), and Stephanie Link said GS.

Jon Hilsenrath sure delivered a heckuva Fed analysis

At least he didn't call her "Michelle."

Jon Hilsenrath's first question from Melissa Lee at the top of Wednesday's Fast Money was whether the Fed's action is good or bad.

"Oh God," Hilsenrath blurted (that means "hell if I know"), explaining it was a "really complicated decision they made" (sounds like he's leaning latter).

Lee asked if the Fed might be better off with more "opacity." Hilsenrath didn't hear all of the question but acknowledged, "That's what some people say."

Brian Kelly asked why the Fed doesn't just buy stocks. "For one they're not allowed to," Hilsenrath said, his only useful answer of the session.

Karen Finerman asked a great question, noting the 6.5% unemployment benchmark and wondering the criteria for that, if that's "a one-time print at that level." Hilsenrath again claimed not to hear the whole thing but said, "They're looking at the unemployment rate in real time."

Hilsenrath warned that in 2015, "we could be looking at turbulent times," but the Fed chairman is determined not to do what the 1930s Fed did or modern Japan did: "Ben Bernanke is a gunslinger."

Steve Grasso dismissed the Fed as a catalyst. "It was definitely a sell-the-news type of event ... he's lost the bang for his buck here. So I don't- I think we've seen enough of this act," Grasso said.

Dan Nathan said the S&P futures curve shows "people aren't that worried that we won't get a deal."

Brian Kelly borrowed Steve Grasso's line, saying the Fed is proving lesser bang for the buck, but the gains are in "hard assets."

Mel says ‘it’s always good to see’ someone who doesn’t know her name

Danny Meyer runs a lot of restaurants most Fast Money viewers have never heard of and doesn't have a publicly traded stock, but that couldn't stop him from being the star guest at the Nasdaq on Wednesday's Fast Money.

"Thanks Michelle," was how Meyer began his remarks, saying consumers are taking a "wait-and-see approach" to the cliff, and praising his own company for offering health insurance back to 1985 and so will have to do only a "tiny bit of tweaking" for the Affordable Health Care Act.

Karen Finerman asked about the revenue breakdown between Union Square and Shake Shack. And she got a total dodge, and we don't mean the Dart, as Meyer explained, "The revenue's not really the issue so much," but apparently Shake Shack has a lot lower overhead and so "can actually grow a lot more quickly."

Meyer did elicit a "wow" out of Michelle Melissa Lee, who unfortunately concluded by asking what's "the one thing that keeps you up at night." Meyer said commodity prices, though he didn't admit to any sleepless nights.

"Always good to see you," Lee said.

Checking up on Meyer's bio, we found a Wikipedia page that's straight off the press release. (For those wondering about caliber of Wiki edits.)

Steve Grasso parlayed the conversation into a tout of COH, which brought a lecture from Michelle Melissa about how it's "sorta" going "downmarket" now. Karen Finerman, whose sleeveless black will have to be considered a tie with Mel's glimmering blue, lamented that KORS has done a "fantastic job" but "I sold it way too early." Dan Nathan grumbled that "retail seems to be hitting a wall here."

Fast Money bust of the month: Brian Kelly tells viewers to ‘get out’ of STJ

Brian Kelly on Wednesday's Fast Money told viewers to "stay away" from BIG.

Meanwhile, on Nov. 21, Kelly said that if you hold STJ, "You need to get out."

STJ had closed that day at $31.37 — a price it hasn't seen since.

Because it's gone straight up 13% — a decent return for a month that those heeding Kelly's advice missed.

Gene Munster bullish on an Apple product

Setting himself up for potentially nasty e-mails from the pro-AAPL crowd, Steve Grasso predicted on Wednesday's Fast Money that Apple TV is "going to under- underperform basically what our expectations are."

Mike Khouw also wasn't terribly excited. "I don't see them getting as much of a premium" as on other products, Khouw said.

Dan Nathan, who a year ago predicted the iCloud would screw up people's calendars, scoffed that Apple TV "seems so 2012 ... if that's the next catalyst for this stock, this stock's got a lot of problems in my opinion."

Gene Munster, though, said that assuming Apple TV gets 10% penetration, he's adding 6% to 2014 revenue.

Munster told Karen Finerman that the TV will be "significantly different that they're probably not gonna see some cannibalization" with other products.

Brian Kelly speculated, "What if Apple took its cash and bought Netflix and put it on their TV?" Nobody specifically answered, though Karen Finerman explained, "Apple could buy anything and have it be accretive."

Actually it wouldn’t be ‘ironic,’ but more like ‘interesting’ or ‘coincidental’

Jane Wells reported on Wednesday's Fast Money that 99% of Facebook employees give Mark Zuckerberg a thumbs-up.

Brian Kelly, with a bizarre example of Playboy and Sam Adams, questioned why someone with a great job would tell others about it. Karen Finerman opined, "I'm skeptical of 99.9% anything. I think it was rigged."

Dan Nathan outright scoffed. "Microsoft was actually probably a great place to work 20 years ago." But Nathan later contended, "If you woke up tomorrow morning and they said they were gonna use their $10 billion in cash plus some stock to buy Twitter, I think you'd have that stock back up to the IPO price like that."

Steve Grasso said for YHOO to climb and gain inroads in e-mail, "It has to become cool again ... I actually have an AOL e-mail still ... what's gonna be ironic is when they get a takeout bid when the stock travels all the way back up to 30 bucks."

Steve Grasso has now said at least 4 times that WYNN was a special-dividend play worth keeping after the dividend announcement

Kayla Tausche reported on Wednesday's Fast Money that Ray Dalio was suggesting eventually bonds will be a short, but no one knows when; "you'll know it when you feel it."

Brian Kelly said, "I actually bought some TIPS today." Kelly made SLV his Final Trade.

Karen Finerman said it's hard to believe WMT customers would be that focused on the fiscal cliff. Finerman also revealed "we're long" GDI, and as for WAG, "at this price would hold 'em." Her Final Trade was long FINL.

Steve Grasso said WYNN got a boost from rumblings about online gambling in the fiscal cliff talks. Grasso also said LAZ's roughly $30 price "has been a tough level" but he'd still hold it here. Grasso said he likes VAC's chart, and made HPQ his Final Trade.

Dan Nathan warned about chasing RIMM; "I'd be a little cautious up here above 13." Nathan said his Final Trade — assuming there's a fiscal cliff deal — is short XLY.

Mike Khouw said JOY benefitted on the notion the world isn't in a multi-year capex contraction. Khouw reported a big buyer of June 12 calls in DAL and said the options activity in SAM has been bearish; he "certainly wouldn't wanna buy it on these valuations." Raining a bit on Judge's documentary parade, Khouw said to "fold Marriott" and made "sell Saks" his Final Trade.

Jane Wells referred to the "Papal trinity thing" in yet another West Coast Wrap touching a broad array of subjects. She also rattled off a Yahoo e-mail that is perhaps phony (that, and the fact it might be real and we don't want to enable fans of USC opponents are reasons we're not listing it here).

Judge’s finest hour — asks
Dennis Gartman to define (clumsily at best) owning gold in yen terms

The conversation between Judge Wapner and Dennis Gartman on Wednesday's Halftime Report didn't exactly get off on the right foot.

A couple days ago, "I do recall you saying you were negative on gold, are you changing now," Wapner asked Gartman.

"Judge I- I've- I don't think I've been negative on gold for a while ... I own gold, I'm openly bullish of gold. I own gold in yen terms," Gartman asserted.

Unfazed, Judge seized upon this owning-in-yen-terms cliche and told Gartman "I hear you say it a lot," but the viewers maybe don't know what it means.

"Well it means I own gold, and instead of- when you own gold in dollar terms, you're buying gold, you're essentially short the dollar. Uh, if you buy gold and short yen, you are now long gold in yen terms ... I'm long gold, I'm short the yen, I'm long gold in yen terms," Gartman sputtered.

Judge let it go at that, not pushing for those such as the chuckleheads who author this page who might wonder 1) if you want to short the yen, can't you just short it without getting gold mixed up in it, and 2) if you buy GLD and short JACK, then are you long gold in Jack in the Box terms?

It seems as though the confusion over Judge's initial assertion that Gartman was "negative" on gold stems from Gartman's comment last Thursday that "owning gold in dollar terms is a very bad trade, it's been a bad trade for a while," which to the vast majority of folks does sound rather negative on gold, but whatever. (At least Dennis didn't say the yen is "close" to a generational buy.)

Flash: Jim Paulsen bullish

Jim Paulsen, never one to shy away from a bullish forecast, contended on Wednesday's Halftime Report that stocks and the economy are "ready to stand on their own," but nonetheless, "I think we're gonna get a modest fiscal tightening."

Enis Taner argued, "I think the market's playing a game of 3-card Monte ... earnings is actually where the coin is."

But Paulsen countered, "I don't really think that earnings is the driving force here ... the big key driving force is rising confidence."

Mike Murphy said before the Fed announcement that if there's nothing from the central bank, expect a market selloff. But afterwards, not surprisingly, Murphy said, "The Fed is basically telling you it's safe to go out and buy; I think the markets continue to rally."

Pete Najarian said not to expect a "huge big storyline" from the Fed, and then said afterward there seems to be a "long-term, sort of a, uh, prognosis."

Stephen Weiss said of the cliff, "The market's clearly building in a deal."

‘So much pent-up demand for the iTV ...’

Enis Taner said on Wednesday's abbreviated Halftime Report that "Apple is still a show-me story for next earnings."

But Mike Murphy declared, "There's so much pent-up demand for the iTV that when they do roll it out, it's gonna be massive."

Trying to keep the e-mailers at bay, Taner said he doesn't doubt iTV, but "I just don't think it's a tradeable story yet."

Asked to pick NFLX or CSTR, Pete Najarian said, "I tend to like Netflix," and said the Morgan Stanley analyst has been "dead-on."

Pete Najarian suggested GE as a more boring play on financials (sure, after 50 years of Jeff Immelt's stewardship, it'll be likely to hit 40 again). Pete also suggested HOT and TRIP as plays on Judge's Marriott documentary, airing Wednesday night.

Pete Najarian's Final Trade was EMN. Enis Taner said short XRT, which always seems a bust around this time of year; Mike Murphy said long YUM and Stephen Weiss said long FXI.

[Tuesday, December 11, 2012]

That was some case Walter Price made for FB

Walter Price told Melissa Lee on Tuesday's Fast Money that his cost basis in FB shares is 21, and he likes the stock because he expects it to "show strong growth in mobile, uh, advertising revenue."

(What happened to the search and the sponsored stories and the Want button and the TechCrunch interview and the declarations that they won't unload insider shares?)

Before the Facebook conversation could ever get going, Brian Kelly asked Price about 2 companies Price likes (WDC and STX) that produce "dinosaurs." Price said he disagrees they make dinosaurs and asserted, "the cloud companies buy a lot of disk drives."

Keith McCullough — who famously called FB a buy on its IPO but did concede shortly after — said that what he likes about the stock now is that value investors will keep trying to short it.

Tim Seymour pointed to another Price pick, CRM, and suggested its valuation is out of control; "this scares me."

We never did hear what else Karen was selling Tuesday

On a day in which apparently it was obligatory at CNBC to bash Washington (center of our government, not Freddie "Boom Boom"), Keith McCullough chipped in his own over-the-top fiscal cliff commentary on Tuesday's Fast Money by suggesting, "I think you see the political class self-imploding on a daily basis."

Tim Seymour grumbled that the Fed is being asked to do the "heavy lifting" for the economy, something "they cannot and they should not" do.

Brian Kelly claimed there's a "disconnect" between what Wall Street wants and what Washington, D.C., wants. "I think it's gonna be some tough sledding over the next couple days," Kelly said.

Mike Khouw said that because of holidays, the VIX is actually higher than it looks, and "not incredibly cheap."

Karen Finerman revealed, "I actually sold a couple of things today," including CMI, and she's concerned about the market because "so much, you know, euphoria is priced in."

Keith McCullough argued that the path to success is, "You get the dollar right, you get beta, or you get the market right." Brian Kelly said the defense-stock ETF (he said he thinks it's "IAT" but as the screen chart showed, that's actually the one for regional banks) has been working but now there are better opportunities elsewhere.

Dennis Gartman drives a Jaguar

Dennis Gartman told Tuesday's Fast Money that not only is it good to be driving a Jaguar seen, but it's good to be long stocks rather than crude; "I think we're gonna take a look down to see what $60 crude oil looks like."

Brian Kelly said the only thing keeping oil elevated is "geopolitical risk," but nonetheless declared, "I think it's a tough short at this point." He said one way to play lower oil without shorting it is to short the EWC given the pressures of low oil on Canada.

Gartman, contrasting the cars he drove in the 1960s vs. 2012, said ExxonMobil's energy export/independence timeline maybe isn't realistic; "I think they're actually being very conservative."

More things from Web Extra that were better than things on the actual TV show

Tim Seymour said it "makes sense" that Morgan Stanley would be mulling a buyback to take advantage of a perceived depressed share price, and Karen Finerman affirmed, "It wouldn't shock me if they did," but that "Bank America" (sic) would have a similar plan.

Mike Khouw said the options players are making "mostly just bullish bets" on banks.

Karen Finerman in the Web Extra made a spirited argument for AIG, calling it an "embedded inflation bet."

Muni expert Alexandra Lebenthal said there's not much trading in Detroit bonds, which have already priced in a lot of trouble, and she wouldn't chase the yields right now, and she pointed out that Puerto Rico owes $67 billion, and it "breaks my heart" because "they bonded out their debt service," which is "a situation I'd stay away from."

Brian Kelly said "I'm short XHB" and said HD and LOW are trading above their multiples at the peak of the housing boom. Karen Finerman said the XHB gain has been "phenomenal" while the general real estate market has been good but not as great. Tim Seymour expressed skepticism about homebuilder valuations; "these guys are expensive."


Mike Khouw reported on Tuesday's Fast Money of a big buyer of LVS December 45.25 calls, and in fact other buyers in a day of "unusual bullish activity."

Karen Finerman said "I like LVS," citing the Penn gaming restructuring, and "I like it here."

Finerman wasn't expecting a DG bounce; "I don't think you need to jump in right here."

Tim Seymour said the move in MCP on its CEO news was "not a huge reaction," and actually "the stock's (sic) actually still looks somewhat bullet-proof."

Seymour said BIDU has reached a "somewhat sane" valuation, and "there are shorts that are very, very nervous."

Brian Kelly said the steel sector was strong because of some price hikes (though he didn't note that Steve Grasso apparently took his profit a bit too early). (This writer is long AKS.)

Keith McCullough said to be careful with S because it isn't making higher highs. Mike Khouw said one plus for TXN is that "inventories are very low."

Upon seeing the panelists at the top of Tuesday's Fast Money it was immediately evident this page would require an image of Karen Finerman's new exquisite black ensemble. As a bonus, we were able to secure a side view, significant in this instance because while most faces on TV are understandably most impressive straight-on and Finerman competes quite well here, Karen's Sunday punch is actually the 10-more-years-off side profile, in which she is unmatched on CNBC.

Al Hrabosky: Still getting paid?

Brian Kelly on Tuesday's Fast Money was forced to defend his pro-AMZN call — he did it by explaining that the valuation was actually at the right level — but said it's time to "take a little bit off the table."

On the other hand, Kelly defended his loser, UNG. "I am still long natural gas ... I'd still buy UNG," Kelly said.

Brian Shactman said "baseball's known for 'deferred money'," and if you're looking for relevant examples of kicking the can down the road, consider the contract Ted Turner once gave Al Hrabosky — in November 1979 — that spread payments out over 35 years.

Mike Khouw's Final Trade was AIG. Tim Seymour said sell EEM, Keith McCullough said long FDX, Karen Finerman said AIG and Brian Kelly said PPLT.

Mel Lee wore sharp purple, which happened to be the same dress she's wearing in that obnoxious "I am Fast Money" commercial starring Jon Najarian, Stephanie Link-Cramer and Steve Grasso that aired during the program.

1,500 by year-end possible

David Bianco said on Tuesday's Halftime Report there's an "80% chance" of a fiscal cliff deal before Dec. 31, and in fact, "I think that could take the S&P to 1,500 by year-end or early January."

But Bianco said market conditions later in 2013 will be determined by the quality of the deal, and "probably the best litmus test is the dividend tax rate."

Bianco cited "Nordstrom's (sic)" (JWN), SYK and RHI as dividend possibilities that are also solid stocks to own.

Stephen Weiss said he doubts any special dividends from MSFT or AAPL; "it's not in their operating plan."

They should just call it
‘Gold Now,’ or ‘Gold And Maybe A Little Crude Now’

Jackie DeAngelis turned heads in green ensemble on Tuesday's Halftime Report, but yet another Futures Now go-round on gold surely put viewers at risk of turning the dial.

Anthony Grisanti said gold is reacting to the cliff negotiations. Rich Ilczyszyn said if there's a cliff deal, "I think short-term it would be bad for gold," but in an unofficial poll of about 10 people he spoke to, "everybody seems to be a little bit long," so if you're a "gold bug," watch 1,674 and "stay long above that level."

Paul Richards recommended buying euro/yen at 107.00.

Nobody argued that BKS will be stealing market share

Judge Wapner actually has conducted some useful stock debates recently, but Tuesday's AMZN go-round on the Halftime Report could be considered anything but.

Apparently Joe Terranova's bear argument is that Amazon will buy/become a phonemaker and it'll be a bust. "They're going to try and get into the smartphone game by actually owning the hardware," Terranova said.

Josh Brown countered that "the ecosystem is clearly the play," and that it's a company that will "grow revenue 30% ... another 30% next year."

Terranova then played Create A New Word, coming up with "adgest" (a hybrid of "address" and "suggest").

Brown finally said about the only argument that matters. "If money continues to flow into this market and it is, a lot of it is coming into Amazon," Brown said.

Terranova insisted that next year, Facebook institutional ownership "increases dramatically" at the expense of a name like AMZN; Brown said AMZN will still be OK.

Stephen Weiss somehow identified a winner. "I think Joe," Weiss said, not because of what Terranova actually said (which wasn't much) but because Weiss like many in this feature had pre-Judged the case, that the downside is greater than the upside. "I can't play the momentum game ... Greater Fool Theory," Weiss said. Mike Murphy added, "I would side more with Joe."

Weiss would sell Sprint

Tuesday viewers of the Halftime Report might've thought they were in for a treat with Maria Bartiromo at the top of the hour, but after about 8 minutes of political mumbo jumbo, the Halftime Report was suddenly looking highly appealing.

Stephen Weiss lamented the market's gain on deal progress; "all we've done really is ratchet up the risk."

Mike Murphy asserted, "I think Boehner sounded like today he was overplaying his hand a little bit," but made a highly bullish argument based on the 1,425 level. "I don't see anything between this 1,430 level and 1,450, and from there I think we could close on the highs of the year."

Josh Brown said "individuals have been selling, but institutions and hedge funds have been net buyers for the last 4 weeks," and called it a mistake for people to be selling based on fiscal cliff capital-gains concerns and actually advised selling nothing on the cliff.

Joe Terranova said the Fed is telling investors, "Why be in cash, why be in Treasurys," and even though it's "artificial stimulation ... you are being forced into risk assets."

As the fiscal cliff looms, Stephen Weiss said "one of the names I would sell is Sprint," then questioned why some people are overthinking tax concerns in selling good stocks; it's "just not that big a deal."

Josh Brown said a lot of people in late 1999 didn't sell dot-coms because of the steep taxes, but then they got "absolutely crowbarred." Joe Terranova, adding one to the penalty box® lexicon, said, "I just like that crowbarred, that's, that's one we've gotta use going forward," but said he would sell GPS, because "it really is about momentum." Mike Murphy said LEN would be a profit-taking candidate if there's no deal.

Lighten up on BAC

Steve Grasso in his now-brief appearance on Tuesday's Halftime Report said GS if it can hold around the 118 level may be the financial to own right now; "it looks like it wants to make a run at 130 bucks." But Grasso called "Bank America (sic), right now, overbought."

Mike Murphy agreed on BAC, "if you're still in the name, you need to take it off here because it's way, way, way overbought."

Grasso warned about MS on a gain; "be careful in that name."

Joe Terranova saluted his own "pearly whites" in reporting, "I enjoy smiling."

Josh borrows Joe’s terminology (but not penalty box®)

Josh Brown said on Tuesday's Halftime that AAPL is like a "casino," and "probably stays under some pressure."

Joe Terranova reiterated that he called it a casino himself yesterday, and he likes QCOM, NXPI (his Final Trade) and CRUS. Brown and Stephen Weiss, in fact, both made QCOM their own Final Trade.

Terrranova said he still likes EXPE and even TRIP on the spike, "stay in it."

Brown said DG suffered because "people don't like the guidance ... I can't find a reason to be long this when you can be long Wal-Mart." Mike Murphy said LTD is one of those "sell on the news stories." Joe Terranova said URBN is "a name you stay with."

Stephen Weiss still likes AIG. "I own it, I continue to like it, if it pulls back I'll buy more, if it stabilizes I'll buy more," Weiss said.

Mike Murphy said MNST is right on the 100-day, so watch that. Josh Brown said GOOG "looks terrific." Joe Terranova said Singapore Airlines looks like the play on the Delta deal, the first time Singapore Airlines has been mentioned on a Fast Money/Halftime program. Stephen Weiss said to "stay away from" BBY. Mike Murphy's Final Trade was DIS, amid some chuckles.

[Monday, December 10, 2012]

Mel looks dynamite in chic gray dress, new hairstyle

If you're concerned that you've been watching the same episode of Fast Money almost daily this month, you're probably right.

Monday's Fast gang disclosed/reiterated their stock picks for the fiscal cliff, including Guy Adami, who said if there's a deal, the "aftermath won't be as positive as people want," yet nonetheless suggested "I would go to Boeing."

Brian Kelly, who used to say the biggest risk to Wall Street/bank stress tests/whatever is an improving economy, warned Monday of "potentially austerity here in the U.S." and said China and Europe "might be better" if there's a U.S. deal ... and then recommended LMT in that case.

Anthony Scaramucci suggested GD and said of defense in general, "these stocks will do well, with or without the cliff."

Scott Nations said, "I would short gold." Pete Najarian said BAC "could go a lot higher" especially if it starts paying a healthy dividend rate. Then, in a bout of wishful thinking, Pete said of banks, "These are moneymaking machines right now and I think if the government gets out of their way..."

Ben White assured viewers on Monday's show that "these things are gonna get done in private. Both sides need to leap off a bridge here."

A remarkably firm optimism

Ed Yardeni visited Monday's Fast Money and was most notable not for what he said, but the way he said it:

"1,465 in a heartbeat" was the quote, provided there's a fiscal-cliff deal.

Furthermore, Yardeni predicted a 1,565 test early next year in such a scenario.

"I think the U.S. ... is actually gonna surprise," Yardeni said, although he bungled otherwise interesting commentary by explaining what a "Rodney Dangerfield of bull markets" actually means.

Yardeni admitted, "Politicians have a long track record of kicking the can down the road; they can certainly do it again," and he said "I think health care at this point" is the best bet for 2013.

One thing we can definitely say is that if we had a dollar for every person on CNBC in every December who says things will be better or no worse than flat next year, we'd be as wealthy as Seema Mody is good-looking (that would be upper tier of the Forbes list) ... but on the other hand, Yardeni's commentary is far more plausible than Guy Adami's tiresome long-running "it's-all-these-things-Europe-China-etc.-and-we're-going-lower-sometime" routine.

Coincidentally or not, another bull, Neil Dutta visited the Nasdaq Monday and was even more effusive, saying "quite frankly there's nothing but cyclical upside to the U.S. economy ... to me it's just only a matter of time ... I think we're talkin' about 3½% GDP growth by this time next year," and singled out appliances as the "next leg in the housing story." That one seemed maybe a bit hyper, and Brian Kelly disagreed, arguing there's a "heckuva lot more deleveraging to do." Guy Adami also said he'd be "cautious" about owning the standard appliance stock, WHR, as it may have already priced in Dutta's scenario. "Looks like we're putting in a bit of a double-top," Adami said.

Bet Doug Kass thinks it’s close to a generational bottom

The best thing that ever happened to HPQ was an 11-handle.

Pete Najarian said on Monday's Fast Money that "your downside is very, very limited" in HPQ, while Scott Nations detected a big seller of January 2014 HPQ 13 puts for $1.85.

Guy Adami said it makes sense that Carl Icahn would like this name; "this seems to be right up his alley," and even extremely-good-looking-gray-dress-wearing Melissa Lee suggested owning HPQ could be a win-win because either there's a turnaround or there will be management changes that produce a turnaround.

Lee actually asked Brian Kelly, "gun to the head," whether he'd pick HPQ or DELL. "Probably Hewlett-Packard," Kelly sputtered.

Pete Najarian also touted YHOO. "I think you've got more upside right now than Google," Najarian said.

Anthony Scaramucci said AAPL is a name "I would stay away from right now."

Maybe Ron Johnson should consider meggings

Brian Kelly asked the question of the day on Monday's Fast Money — whether, if Ron Johnson was able to transform every JCP store into exactly what he wanted overnight, the stock would be a screaming buy.

And guest Matthew Boss wavered and waffled. "That's obviously the million-dollar question," he said, before allowing, "these changes are concerning to me," which we take to mean a "no."

Boss said the company has gone through a significant number of discounts in 2012, and so "JCPenney potentially is considering more of a hybrid model of sales."

Guy Adami said JCP brass is in the "zone of not knowing who their competitors are," and "I'd rather own M right now than JCP." Pete Najarian said SHLD could be the real turnaround story in department store clothing.

Pete Najarian admitted "I own some upside calls" in BBY, apparently to take advantage of when the chuckleheads start floating rumors about a Schulze buyout, but "I'm convinced that there's probably not a deal." Anthony Scaramucci mocked the notion of a buyout. "I think it's a fiction," Scaramucci said.

Been a while since Whitney Tilson gushed about this one

It's nearly impossible to concentrate on anything Seema Mody is actually saying during her television hits, but apparently on Monday there was some Twitter chatter about BKS, which didn't appeal to the Fast Money crew.

"For me Barnes & Noble is a no-touch," said Brian Kelly.

"My instinct" is to sell it on any rally, said Guy Adami.

"Management will run it into the ground before it gets broken up," predicted Anthony Scaramucci, who called it a "classic value trap."

The things you hear on the Fast Money Web Extra

Melissa Lee and Anthony Scaramucci said on Monday's Fast Money Web Extra that Scaramucci would be attending the premiere of "Les Misérables" ... because his daughter, Amelia, is actually in the movie. (That's not actually her in the above photo.)

SWHC ‘gonna be a buy’

Pete Najarian said on Monday's Fast Money there's hope if you're in AIG; "the upside call-buying in this name has been absolutely spectacular."

Guy Adami noted the startling reversal of SWHC, and said the stock probably goes down Tuesday, but "I think this stock is gonna be a buy" and if you can grab it around 9 bucks, do it.

Brian Kelly said he expects "more buying of Canadian assets" on the NXY deal.

Pete Najarian cited the 65 March calls in EMN; "it's going higher."

Scott Nations said FDX was 10% busier than its busiest day of the year last year.

Amelia Bourdeau, who always looks good on television but apparently talked too long about the setup to her euro/yen trade than Melissa Lee had time for, said she'd short the euro vs. the yen at 106.50.

Brian Kelly said VIA, on the Barron's list, figures to be a winner in the content space. Pete Najarian said he likes JPM and MPC. Scott Nations agreed with JPM, "I like JPMorgan a lot."

Nations' Final Trade was to buy WHR. Brian Kelly said buy XLB, Guy Adami said buy YHOO, Anthony Scaramucci said Go see "Les Misérables" to be long GD. Pete Najarian touted ANR.

Jane Wells, world's hippest business reporter, said, "If I see someone wearing meggings, I'm gonna go out and slap him."

Steve Cortes sighting

Steve Cortes — why, again, is he never seen on the Halftime Report these days? — made another Monday Closing Bell appearance to debate MCD vs. BKW with a chap named Jim Sanderson.

MCD is "certainly the better investment of the two," Cortes asserted, citing a "lot of negativity" about the stock while over time it has been "an incredible performer."

Cortes also argued that MCD will benefit from the "Dogs of the Dow" strategy (but didn't mention Mag Black Scott by name).

Sanderson insisted BKW has a "lot more upside opportunity," though Cortes got the last word (actually more than the last word, adding marketing/mascot analysis) and said BKW's forward P.E. implies a higher-priced stock than MCD.

Doug Kass’ AAPL parsing makes John McAfee sound clear and straightforward

Doug Kass on Monday's Halftime Report was just getting going on his gratuitous every-direction-called-correctly AAPL Brag Trade (bought from 530-510, sold on scale "starting at 565 to 585 and reshorted the stock and have since covered") when Judge Wapner brought up a bit of trouble — the facts.

Specially, that Kass used the term "generational" in November.

"You used the word 'generational'," Judge correctly said.

"No, that was I think Joe Terranova," Kass sputtered. "That was not my- I said, I said, exactly what I'm saying now, I said that Apple would be- go back to the um, the video, I said just the opposite, I said, um, it would be subject to trading rentals both on the long and short side, and it is not investable."

Later, armed with a transcript (perhaps he just read this page's November archives), Judge told Kass, "I don't do this, um, with the thought that I'm trying to embarrass you or whatever, um, on November 16th, you said, and these are your words, Doug, 'I think this is close to a generational opportunity in the stock'."

Kass then admitted he did use "generational," explaining, "I said 'close to a generational opportunity' not a generational opportunity."

A gentleman, Judge allowed this buffoonery to pass. "I guess I'm just not used to hearing people talk about generational opportunities when they're talking about a Fast Money trade," Judge said. "That terminology is generally used for a longer-term investment wouldn't you agree."

Kass said, "I think you're dealing with semantics." (Translation: Yeah, I'm full of it.)

"OK. Well, we'll let it be. We'll revisit it some other time," Judge said, opting not to go to the transcript to show that Kass also didn't say "just the opposite" on Nov. 16, but rather merely called AAPL "kind of a leveraged capital play on, on the, on the equity market."

Kass said Monday the stock is a "trading sardine" and that he disagrees with Jon Najarian that the selling is about capital gains and tax fears. Dr. J zinged Kass on hardware/software distinctions and declared Apple is a "RETAILER."

Joe Terranova, wisely backing away from terminology that shouldn't have been brought up in the first place (unless it's 2003), said, "Let's take the generational low comment off the table and let's just assume that what I said was wrong ... Apple has become nothing more than a casino," and, struggling to finish his comments before Kass interrupted him, said, "Yes Dougie can successfully trade Apple; most people watching this show cannot."

Joe’s paperback:
BKS $13.98, AMZN $11.55
(hardcover $19.50 vs. $17.81)

Stephanie Link on Monday's Halftime Report battled Simon Baker on BKS and made a serious of bullish arguments including "size and scale ... gaining marketshare in the ebook business ... great sponsors ... a lot of the bad is in."

Simon Baker said promotions are "cutting into earnings per share ... it sounds like Blockbuster," and faulted a "bad business model" with a startling example: that Barnes&Noble was apparently selling Joe Terranova's book for $22.99 while Amazon was selling it for $7.99.

Joe Terranova was asked to declare a debate winner but had obviously already pre-Judged the case, explaining how he doesn't like the business model or the April trading action and, "It's not something that I would own."

In a surprise, Jon Najarian said, "I love this stock," though he "liked both arguments," and think the REIT potential plus Nook spinoff potential could mean this "stock is double where it is here ... watch this stock run."

WSJ article in penalty box®

Judge opened Monday's Halftime Report with a curiously generic assortment of lukewarm fiscal-cliff-deal plays.

Joe Terranova offered MA, predicting a price over 500, as well as AXP and WFM, and said he doesn't fear a slowing consumer as a WSJ report indicated; he would "take the other side of a lot of what was written in that article."

Stephanie Link suggested ACN and IBM. Simon Baker said NOC, but only on a cliff deal.

Jon Najarian suggested FXI. "I don't often go for the ETFs," Najarian said, but if there's a deal, "I think this one goes into the mid-40s." Stephanie Link also indicated interest in the FXI; "definitely seeing some momentum pick up in China."

Presumably it wasn’t Michael unless Dr. J was on the corporate jet

Not too long ago it sounded like Joe Terranova was the only Fast Money personality who actually liked DELL, then we heard Enis Taner recommend it, and on Monday's Halftime, even Jon Najarian.

"I like HP and DELL both," Najarian said, also saying he recently flew with a DELL exec who said "storage is where it's at," and "the cloud is driving business like crazy."

Jackie DeAngelis, who did the news alerts this time and not the Ilczyszyn/Grisanti futures gig, pointed out HPQ was up on Carl Icahn reports/rumors. Simon Baker said "avoid at all costs," it's a "value trap." Terranova said he's "sticking with DELL."

Bullish on generics (and we don’t mean the drugmakers)

New guest Tom Digenan was welcomed to Monday's Halftime by Judge Wapner only to make the broadest, least-interesting types of stock suggestions possible.

Digenan thinks financials, especially the biggies below book, are best poised for a run, especially if housing is improving, and he also likes tech.

But he thinks the dividend payors are "overpriced" and would avoid Treasurys, staples and utilities. He said corporate balance sheets are like the '80s, but he doubts there's an appetite for an LBO binge.

Stephanie Link-Cramer said she's been buying more KEY. Jon Najarian said the big-bank run "absolutely has not" ended, although BAC after its big gains is now "a little off my radar" in the short term.

Simon Baker indicates Delta flight attendants aren’t so hot

Commodity watcher Hussein Allidina told Monday's Halftime Report "we like oil relative to consensus" and "copper is our favorite base metal," and he said he's liked gold since 2006 when he joined the Morgan Stanley team.

Jon Najarian said of CME, "on dips here, I'm a buyer," and said he has owned shares as a seatholder and will "continue to hold it." Joe Terranova said there's "more upside potential" in EXPE and TRIP than in PCLN. Stephanie Link said at JCP, "the new concepts are actually doing well," and called the stock "kind of interesting here."

Terranova wasn't that high on STX; "I still think EMC's your best data-storage play." Jon Najarian said the message from IR's day is take profits. Simon Baker said people were taking profits in GPS, while Stephanie Link said you would own FDX as a restructuring play.

Simon Baker said he hopes DAL doesn't buy Virgin Atlantic, then he "won't have any of those sexy little things serving me, uh, drinks anymore."

Jon Najarian's Final Trade was PSX, a great stock pick recently from the Najarians and Guy Adami. Joe Terranova said RF, Stephanie Link said MGM and Simon Baker said gold.

Seema Mody was stunning, but her hair appeared to have lost some of the bounce it had when jolting a lot of folks out of bed around 6 a.m. Eastern while doing a market update for local NBC.

Johnny Manziel, in a cumbersome interview in which Judge, Manziel and Brian Shactman talked over each other, said he'd be "ashamed" if someone was profiting from trademarking his nickname, when he probably meant "outraged."

[Friday, December 7, 2012]

Joe’s feelin’ it — leaves viewers hanging for 54 minutes before reaffirming another stock in the penalty box®

Judge Wapner likes to chide the Halftime Report panelists who are actually interested in making money by questioning how in the world it matters if they like a stock at, say, 32 as opposed to 30.

Yet, such a distinction would've paid off handsomely for Joe Terranova this week, who was only a day early on FCX and, despite what he said on Friday's Halftime, is probably going to not be wrong in the near future.

Noting the stock approached 32.60 Friday which was near his 32.80 call Wednesday, Terranova explained, "I said yesterday I am wrong ... I still think I'm wrong, the meeting they had with analysts was terrible."

Actually we think he was right, although he would've been more righter launching this trade on Thursday.

"This is in the penalty box®," Terranova told viewers Friday, albeit with an impressive poker face.

Translation: C not
in the penalty box®

Pete Najarian's gushing about the financials on Friday's Halftime Report was trumped only by Stephen Weiss' BAC Brag Trade.

"A lot of people feel, they're gonna kick this down the road," hence the bullishness in bank options, Najarian said.

Weiss grumbled that everyone talks about JPM and C, while BAC is doing great, "Analysts are still afraid to come out there and say, you know what, I love it." But Weiss admitted he's not adding, because he already has a big position with a cost in the "8s."

Joe Terranova said if you own C, "continue to own it," and if not, "step in."

Boris Schlossberg advised viewers to sell dollar/yen at 82.00 and offered 2 helpful targets, 81.50 and 80.

Wonder what Dennis Gartman thinks of trading silver with a 200% ETF?

Jing Ulrich told Friday's Halftime Report gang that "I think November was actually the inflection point for the Chinese market and the Chinese economy," and added, "I don't think inflation will exceed 2%, 3%."

Judge Wapner, fresh off a day of strongly implying Mantle was no DiMaggio, said he was shocked that Stephen Weiss went long FXI. Weiss said it's because sentiment has been terrible but improving, and there's now a "reasonable chance" it can move higher. "I'm no longer short the iron ore stocks by the way," Weiss added.

Jon Najarian said word is that gold is tumbling on Paulson theories; "people have been front-running him." Najarian said he's a seller of GLD puts at 162 and a seller of GLD calls at 168, and he likes AGQ, where "you get even more bang for your buck."

Who peed in Weiss’ Cheerios?

Stephen Weiss on Friday's Halftime Report exhibited jagbaggy tendencies when asked to comment on DHI's special dividend. "This is like, uh, you know, watching reruns of 'The Brady Bunch,' couldn't be anything more boring than these stories," Weiss said, and actually we do agree with his point, just not his comparison (maybe it's like playing golf with Dave Tepper).

Joe Terranova was somehow prompted to reiterate his pro-NFLX argument practically word-for-word from what he told Stephanie Link the other day; Weiss, perhaps bemoaning the fact he picked the wrong side in declaring Link the winner, grumbled that a Wells notice is "meaningless" to the company's risk factors but that the issue is "overpaying for content," which was the same NFLX argument Len Brecken was constantly making on Fast Money a couple years ago.

Pete Najarian likes PG, "I think it goes higher, I think you hold it," and also said SHLD is winning share in apparel, perhaps from JCP.

Jon Najarian said CPB's margins are under pressure and "I fold this one Judge," and said that while PANW has been a dog, "I think you wanna take a look at this stock in this $50 range."

Judge felt compelled to fill every spare minute with idle AAPL chatter, including that excruciating last minute of the program after the Final Trades because the previous segment ended a bit too abruptly; somewhere along the line Pete Najarian said he likes NOK because Windows 8 is catching on better than people think, while Dr. J noted AAPL volatility is "at record highs right now." Russ Koesterich said AAPL and the market are "hostage" to the fiscal cliff, "I think it is soundbite-driven trading," and that "international stocks are cheaper."

Pete Najarian's Final Trade was NOK, Jon Najarian said KKR, Stephen Weiss said SCCO and Joe Terranova said AXP.

Pete: MCD over $100 in 6 months

Despite concerns by some such as Guy Adami that MCD is going to miss Jim Skinner, and the company's own ouster of top longtime exec Jan Fields recently, Pete Najarian argued on Friday's Fast Money that McDonald's has one of the "best management teams," and the stock will be "over a hundred bucks 6 months from now."

"If the market's up a few percent," said a skeptical Stephen Weiss, who said it's in a promotional environment, and "you can't really say that the management team's great."

Jon Najarian lamented having to make a decision and waffled, "I do think Stephen made good arguments but I gotta go with Pete ... there's no landing at all in China ... this is gonna be higher 6 months from now."

Joe Terranova claimed the ouster of Jan Fields is a sign "management at McDonald's gets it." (Actually it sounds like what they really get is scapegoating.)

Steve Grasso chimed in rather skeptically, "the margins are just crushed here." That was more substance than he could give to the YHOO-is-a-buy-as-long-as-it's-over-19.15 redux.

AAPL ‘just another stock’

Apparently with nothing else to talk about, Judge Wapner launched Friday's Halftime Report with another humdrum AAPL conversation.

"This stock seems to be stuck in this little bit of a range," said Pete Najarian, who said he wouldn't add, but "I still own the stock."

Judge told the panel the stock has been down 9 of the last 11 weeks and in the process wiped out $150 billion on market cap. Jon Najarian, possibly not using "converse" correctly (we're not sure), told Judge the stock put $150 billion on after March, "that is the converse of what you just said," and that recent selling is cliff-tax-related. But he thinks it's interesting around the death cross.

Joe Terranova also called the stock a "proxy for the fiscal cliff" and said you can now get your iPhone 5 in 3 business days, and the next catalyst is whether they sell 50 million; "my money says they will."

Stephen Weiss though claimed "they do need another product," but suggested they had the "same conversation going on 2½ years ago," and the stock did great from there.

Michael Santoli, the Yahoo guy (not the stock, the business partnership), said rather profoundly, "It's becoming slowly just another stock." To that, Judge Wapner asked rhetorically, "Can they wow anybody anymore?"

Steve Grasso tangled with Jon Najarian over how much the stock fell during or after death cross moments in September 2008, with Judge rightly questioning what stocks weren't in the death cross at that moment in time.

More from Friday's Halftime later.

[Thursday, December 6, 2012]

Hold ’em or hold ’em:
Mel & Seema both in aqua*

Steve Grasso got to play The Game That No One Actually Plays on Thursday's Fast Money, Hold 'em or Fold 'em, with YHOO ... and bailed.

"If you wanna buy it here, just nibble," 10-20%, Grasso said, because it must hold 19.15 for a couple days.

Or in other words, "Hold it, but I'm not really sure ... this is just a specific technical call."

He likened it to his canny assessment Tuesday of $10.11 being "kryptonite" for BAC.

Jon Najarian took a crack at THC and warned that whatever happens in D.C. could cause a correction to the "26 area," so he would say "fold 'em," actually playing the game.

From the top of the program, we had easily penciled in Melissa Lee's striking aqua/black combo dress as a mega-hold ... only to shockingly find Seema Mody on the same set in her own similar colors ... so we can happily say those are 2 absolute screaming "holds." Twenty. Thousand. Times. Yes. (*We're gonna get in trouble for this one.)

Consensus starting to catch on:
We’re kicking the can

First Dan Nathan said it, then Jon Najarian, then Neel Kashkari (twice):

We're kicking the can. (Which the stock market is dying to hear.)

"I think the smart money gets it, there's gonna be a compromise whether it's a kick-the-can-down-the-road sort of situation," Nathan said, "and they're afraid to get caught short."

"It's gonna be a kick-the-can, it's probably gonna be the baby grand," Najarian said, though we doubt the word "grand" will have any place in this one.

"We think that Republicans and Democrats will kick the can down the road," Kashkari said. "The fiscal cliff is not really a cliff ... it's more of a hill."

For good measure, Kashkari reaffirmed to Karen Finerman we'll be "kicking the can down the road."

We’re probably a little bit away from Brian Kelly saying ‘Buy everything that’s not nailed down’

While Dan Nathan was declaring a can-kick upcoming and arguing no one wants to be short ahead of that, Steve Grasso concurred with a similar view on Thursday's Fast Money, "You never short a dull tape."

Neel Kashkari partly argued for GD and partly argued in general against a cliff panic, saying it "could be buying opportunities" if we go over.

Of GD, he said, "We continue to be bullish on the stock ... we don't think it's a short-term flip."

Karen Finerman, though, asked a great question, if that bullishness means the stock has priced in any cliff setbacks. Kashkari said the stock is "somewhat pricing in" such downside, but basically he just likes it because it's a "good long-term story."

"We're not just broadly buying the market ... it's a name-by-name basis," Kashkari said.

Kashkari asserted that "right now Washington seems to be on another planet," but he doubts that 1-2 months of being over the cliff in 2013 would really cause unemployment to go from 8% to 11%.

"I think most of us wish that Washington were on another planet and that we could just take the whole group and ship 'em there," said Jon Najarian, who contended in not the greatest English (and we don't mean Alex), "If we do get, uh, 2 weeks or a month worth of, uh, argument that results in the fiscal cliff being fallen off," the "layoff notices" will be going out.

The only real pessimist of the bunch in terms of stock reaction was Karen Finerman, refreshingly back after several days away, who insisted, "I just cannot believe that we are not gonna see some hiccup between now and the 1st of January." But Finerman said she's keeping some "buying powder dry."

Too bad Carl didn’t dial in, he could’ve told Mel & Karen, ‘I can’t tell you what my ultimate goal is, you guys know I’m not gonna answer that...’

Dan Nathan, probably speaking a bit too quickly, identified a curious winner from the NFLX Wells notice on Thursday's Fast Money.

"This is good news for Icahn," Nathan said.

Upon hearing the report, Jon Najarian, who said "I like the deal with Disney a lot," impressively seemed to nail the Wells notice for what it appears to be, "It seems like a slap on the wrist at best."

Later Herb Greenberg dialed in and confirmed Karen Finerman's comments that it's about the Facebook post. "This seemed so obvious, but no one really seemed to give a hoot at the time ... this is gonna be a slap on the wrist," Greenberg said.

Finerman seemed to think Greenberg was overstating the seriousness of this type of incident and suggested a much bigger problem is if — strictly hypothetically — Reed Hastings had called some friends ahead of his comments and mentioned the news. "As a shareholder, that's far more offensive to me." Greenberg admitted that regulators need to better define what constitutes privileged communications.

Tavis McCourt unfortunately seems to confirm Dan Nathan’s prophecy

For Tavis McCourt, AAPL's selloff seems like much iDo about nothing.

McCourt told Thursday's Fast Money that there was a misperception about the AT&T report of flat iPhone sales, explaining 1) it was already known, 2) it's because of last year's comps and some sales of the 5 in the previous quarter, and 3) the "flat" assessment was actually better than previous forecasts.

Dan Nathan said institutions aren't bailing, but "I think it's retail to a large degree," then asked McCourt a question that Nathan utterly already knew the answer to: "Are we gonna spend 2013 listening to probably 50 or 75 sell-side analysts defending their $800 price targets and their buys."

"Uh, we could as long as the numbers keep on coming in," McCourt said, trying to say "yes" without sounding Munster-like. "Even at $700, this wasn't like a situation where RIMM hit 150 a few years ago and trading at 35 times earnings."

Jon Najarian actually claimed AAPL at some point "I think successfully" will be able to disintermediate some television distribution with a set-top wi-fi; "you're going to be able to contact direct- contract rather, directly with major league baseball, football, whatever it is, to get the content you want," Najarian said, and we've only been waiting for the Sunday Ticket to hit regular cable for, oh, about 20 years.

Karen Finerman repeated (funny how a day ago we were just pointing out the Fast Money all-time cliches, mostly involving Dennis Gartman) that Amazon is a "great company, love it as a customer, cannot possibly get close to it at this valuation." Steve Grasso insisted the stock "still continues to defy all laws ... I'd rather buy Amazon than any other retail name."

Something besides AAPL sounds like a generational buy

Refreshingly back on Fast Money for the first time in ages, Dan Dicker offered this provocative statement on energy Thursday: "I think you've seen the lows of natural gas for the rest of your lifetime actually."

Dicker said the problem with the purported natural gas export boom is the "enormous lag time," 4 years minimum, from getting a permit to doing the exporting. But he does think it helps to create a "build of a floor" in natural gas.

Dicker told Steve Grasso that LNG "I think is overhyped to a certain degree," and he liked it better at 10 than 14, but "knock yourself out." And he wasn't so high on CHK; "I like other dry gas plays better," specifically SWN, ECA and UPL.

Mike Khouw said someone was buying the CSCO weekly 19.50 calls for 9 cents. Dan Nathan said "people got in front of this analysts meeting."

Nathan then revealed his own play on COST, "I bought some December 105 puts yesterday. I bought some more today." Steve Grasso said some of the special dividend plays can bounce back ex-div if you're patient.

Mike Khouw's Final Trade was to sell AAPL calls. Steve Grasso's Final Trade is YHOO, but only if it holds 19.15 for another 2 days (some help that is). Dan Nathan apparently likes COST puts, Karen Finerman said long C and Jon Najarian said long NOK.

Joe actually thinking about
trademarking ‘penalty box’

We were wondering how long it would take to get a "penalty box" on Thursday's Halftime Report and were only surprised it took roughly 53 minutes.

Joe Terranova was asked to make a hold 'em or fold 'em call on FCX (we'll set aside, for now, the fact he never did that) and began with a refreshingly honest assessment of a tweet he sent yesterday.

"I thought it was a buy at around 32½," Terranova said (actually the tweet said buying at "32.80" will be a "solid move" in a few months, but what's 30 cents), and then offered this curious update:

"Goldman Sachs puts a report out today and says it places it in the penalty box which by the way I have a problem with because we use that term on Fast Money although some don't like it."

Deconstructing/piecing together that sentence, it sounds like Terranova is knocking Goldman Sachs for using the term and then sticking it to critics of the term (as opposed to those who have merely pointed out that the term tends to pack less of a punch on its 3rd or 4th usage of the program).

Meanwhile, regarding FCX, "I think it is gonna be in the penalty box for some time ... not something you're gonna buy today and flip it in a month or two," Terranova concluded.

It was Judge Wapner of all people who dubiously egged Terranova on, "I like penalty boxes by the way. Keep using it."

"Thank you. Well, between you and I, we'll trademark that," Terranova actually said.

The problem with this exercise, amusing though it was, was that neither Mr. New World — who has been granted a nickname from Michelle Caruso-Cabrera and sometimes sits next to Seema Mody and thus professionally is not in any penalty box whatsoever (those things are more like a 5-on-1 power play) — nor colleague Stephanie Link (who's done something enchanting with her hair) actually met the rules of the segment by declaring a hold or fold, as Link could only say, "I think you have to let the dust settle a little bit first ... at 30, it's very interesting," but it somehow requires a "longer-term time horizon," which sounds to us like a "fold." (But this writer actually got long the stock, which means the trading account will end up where it usually does — the penalty box.)

Judge: Mantle was no DiMaggio

One of the more curious themes on Fast Money/Halftime recently is Dennis Gartman's likening of today's AAPL to those stocks of the early '70s in the Nifty 50.

"Apple's a wonderful company but it's not a good stock at this point," Gartman said on Thursday's Halftime Report, but this time the Nifty 50 reference ran into a roadblock in the form of Steve Milunovich, who asserted, "I doubt many of those stocks were at 10 times with a 30% return on capital like Apple."

We doubt anyone besides possibly Gartman knows or cares.

Milunovich, like everyone else on the show basically waffling, said for AAPL "on one hand the valuation is really cheap," and "on the other hand you do have momentum peaking."

So Milunovich said AAPL "could very well be in a trading range for a while," but that this is only the "4th or 5th inning of the Apple story."

Stephen Weiss suggested he just realized that maybe AAPL is sinking on hedge-fund redemptions. Joe Terranova said if they can report 50 million iPhones, "it's clearly going much higher." Stephanie Link agreed, "If they can do that and they can stabilize margins, I think the stock goes much higher."

Milunovich coined a new one we hadn't heard, "Tim Cook is what's called a Level 5 leader."

Judge, making more than his share of dubious commentary Thursday, said "Mickey Mantle wasn't Joe DiMaggio but he was still pretty damn good," a curious assessment some would quibble with.

Joe puts ego in the penalty box

Judge went to Joe Terranova on Thursday's Halftime Report for an update on whether AAPL remains a "generational buy" on the pullbacks.

"I know you respect this about all of us here," Terranova told Judge, but "I cannot allow ego come (sic) into answering your question," but the stock's action is prompting him to do nothing, but acknowledge "further downside potential ... I can't be egotistical about this."

(Translation: Still could be, but wait for it to bottom again.)

Terranova disappointingly felt compelled to give a shout-out to someone who gets about 50 CNBC shout-outs a day already. "I thought Jim Cramer made a compelling argument and explanation on exactly what's going on here with Apple," which is that it's not the fundamentals. (So, watch Mad Money and Squawk on the Street, not Halftime Report.)

Stephanie Link-Cramer claimed they sold at 584 and that the stock will be "trading range-bound until January 22nd" and it's an "overowned stock to begin with," but you "definitely want on these really big pullbacks to be adding," and Broadcom's guidance raise is a good sign.

Stephen Weiss claimed that "one very legitimate issue here" is what kind of squeeze CHL might put on subsidies or whatnot, but AAPL "long-term is a value play here."

Jon Fortt reported that the "iPad Mini demand outstrips supply."

Whew — Dennis Gartman is still long gold in yen terms

Viewers of Thursday's Halftime Report didn't get a "benign tape," but they did get both the penalty box and a gold-in-yen-terms.

"Owning gold in dollar terms is a very bad trade, it's been a bad trade for a while," said Dennis Gartman, who happily reported he has made money being long gold in yen terms.

Rich Ilczyszyn said "gasoline inventories rose ... that's what's driving the market here" in crude, and that it's range-bound from 90 to 84.50, and "heading back towards the bottom part of the range." Anthony Grisanti said another factor to consider is the Energy Department using Brent as the benchmark.

Gartman said "we're going lower" in oil, "looks bad, it's goin' down," and 65-70 is on the table next year based on the "great production" we're getting.

Todd Gordon said he would short the Aussie against the dollar at 1.0525. That ran him afoul of Dennis Gartman, who said, "I've got the other side of the trade" being long Aussie/yen. Gordon said that must mean Gartman likes stock. "I'm very bullish on the stock market absolutely," Gartman said, burying the lede.

Actually Joe wins

Judge Wapner's NFLX debate on Thursday's Halftime Report pitted Joe Terranova and Stephanie Link in the face-off, with Joe scoring the equivalent of an empty-netter given that Link merely recited his own arguments.

Terranova conceded "the fundamentals of the company are bad," but the Disney deal "places a put underneath the stock," and then there's Icahn's involvement and "having the ability to get sold ... I think a deal is far more likely now."

Link said she can't own a stock just for takeover speculation, the fundamentals are bad, and the Disney deal starts in 2016.

Judge asked Stephen Weiss who won. "I think Stephanie did," Weiss argued, wrongly, citing Icahn's venture into Blockbuster. "Content costs are the principal consideration here," Weiss said.

Joe's argument is strongest for reasons that weren't stated. A decent chunk of people, for whatever reasons, really like this stock, maybe not like AMZN but that's what some see; it's a signature momentum trade and presently in a range where $100 seems very much possible, even if 64 comes first.

How come Judge and Dr. J haven’t blamed HFT for the AAPL slide?

Judge Wapner brought on Dr. J, Jon Najarian, to opine about the Wall Street Journal's newfound realization that some fund managers are doing quarterly window-dressing with smaller-cap stocks.

"I think all of us kind of call it cheating," Najarian said, but assuming they put capital into the positions, "I don't know that you're gonna see these guys taken away in cuffs Judge."

Dennis Gartman said that at the end of the article it's revealed that two guys made an extra $4,700 and $2,300 in fees with this tactic. "Come now. I suspect that the SEC has, has greater things to look into than this ... my guess is they spent several hundred thousand dollars in SEC time" just investigating it.

Stephen Weiss grumbled that "It's not just hedge funds ... it's also long-only funds," and wrote off the segment as, "this story is as old as Lincoln getting shot at Ford (sic) Theatre."

Joe wisely uses the ticker symbol in referring to Dick’s

Tom Lee, who always seems rather bullish in his CNBC appearances and has a 1,430 year-end S&P target that Judge Wapner seemed to find really incredible, told Judge on Thursday's Halftime Report that what Tim Geithner said about the cliff is "not very constructive talk," but "we don't expect us to actually fall off the cliff."

Rather, most of those effects are priced in, Lee said, arguing we've been in a "secular bull market" since 2009, and what would stop that is actually a recession, which is what he looks for evidence of.

For the next 12 months, Lee said, "The groups that really stand out are basic materials and energy names."

Joe Terranova revealed, "DKS has been a favorite name of mine," it's in a "secular trend" and likely "moves to the upper 50s ... this is a solid company."

Terranova also said, "I think YUM is in an excellent position," and said LULU can reach the mid-70s, "I like the name."

Stephanie Link likes OXY, "I like this story down in the low 70s." But she said MW is in a "very tough space."

Stephen Weiss said there are constant rumors about WLT, but "don't buy it on the rumors." He touted BAC, "I own the stock, I still like it," and reaffirmed CNX while conceding a bungle, "I do like it, I own it still," but "shouldn't have done it" in October on nat gas expectations.

Joe Terranova's Final Trade was MA's "500 print in the next week." Stephanie Link said PG, Stephen Weiss said SCCO and Dennis Gartman said stocks over crude.

[Wednesday, December 5, 2012]

Guy Adami rewrites his own history on FCX acquisitions

Mike Khouw said on Wednesday's Fast Money that, despite what you might think about FCX based on Wednesday's crusher, 8 of the top 10 options activity involved calls, and somebody bought a May 35/42 call spread, although he/she hedged it.

Mel Lee asked if anyone on the panel "gets" the FCX deals and found a taker (on both sides) in Tim Seymour, who called it just like Jerome Bettis did the overtime coin toss on Thanksgiving Day 1998. "No, and and, well, I get it, because they definitely are going back into exploration, they are trying to diversify against China risk with copper," Seymour said, before adding, seemingly in a positive way, that while many companies are looking at special dividends and buybacks, M&A is another use for cash, "That's the 3rd option."

"This also looks like a lot of inside dealing, and I don't mean that necessarily there's something shady going on," Seymour said.

Steve Grasso went a lot further on that point, asserting, "I don't think that the shareholders will ever approve of the diversification that they're trying to do right now."

Guy Adami, whose "Freeport McMoran stole Phelps Dodge" was a staple of early Fast Money episodes and ranks in our top 5 all-time cliches (after 1. "I've been doing this 35 40 years" —Dennis Gartman, 2. "I don't trade silver, that's for a younger man" —Dennis Gartman, 3. "I'm long gold, but I'm long it in yen terms" —Dennis Gartman ... etc.), incredibly flipped that around Wednesday: "Well they overpaid, people ... Phelps Dodge a lot of people panned that deal, they said they overpaid and that actually turned out to work out pretty well. It took some time, but it turned out pretty well."

First they "stole," now they "overpaid."

Nevertheless, Adami cited FCX's "monster volume day" and said for the first time in a while, "it could actually be interesting again."

Guy fails to mention the most likely reason he gets hate mail when expressing AAPL skepticism

Guy Adami on Wednesday's Fast Money spent much of his opening monologue trying to convince viewers that Fast Money didn't have anything to do with AAPL's slide.

"It was terrible," Adami said, before insisting, "we are actually trying to help" when predicting price moves, and "we didn't do that to hurt people in any way."

But the fact it sank like this on a "benign day" is troubling, he said. "Technically right now, the stock looks to be a bit broken."

Later Adami made sure to note, "We're not bashing the company."

Of course not. But let's don the Ed Hochuli jersey and play a little referee here.

Chances are, AAPL holders e-mail the stock's critics on CNBC because generally speaking, the bearish calls come after the stock has already slid considerably (though that was not the case with Adami this week), and at least since 2003, selling every one of those dips has proved a mistake.

Actually, most of the time, people on CNBC are saying buy the stock, or offering muddled incomprehensible taking-both-sides positions such as Joe Terranova a day earlier explaining he had taken off a quarter of his position but implying it was still going to go higher.

Mel Lee was heard to say "ecosystem."

James Altucher’s $2 trillion market-cap call seems a little dicey

Gene Munster, who has basically never found AAPL at a price he didn't like, reaffirmed his $900 price target on Wednesday's Fast Money and argued, "First on the P.E. side there's not much, uh, you know, incremental downside because of how much cash they're generating."

Tim Seymour questioned AAPL's future selling "hardware that quite honestly becomes indistinguishable." Munster conceded Android is growing in emerging markets but that the bar for AAPL success is not high, "they can just gain fractional share and still get to where they are going."

Brian Kelly asked Munster a good question, which was, why should people pay 12 times for 25% growth when they were just paying 14 times for 70/80/90%. Munster said it's the "visibility" the company now has, including with the "replacement side of the story," though we're a "couple years away from that."

Munster said demand for Apple products "continues to be exceptionally high."

If LinkedIn wants to start
distributing this page,
it’ll have to pay

LNKD executive Dan Roth visited the Nasdaq Wednesday to tell the Fast gang about the "original content" that LinkedIn is now boasting.

"This is less about subscriptions and more about making sure we get the right content in front of the right people," Roth said, as it was noted that Barack Obama and Richard Branson are 2 of the featured writers of "original content."

Mel Lee a couple times tried to figure out what this really means for the company. "This is a conversation-starter," Roth said. Then he told Brian Kelly, "No we're not paying for content," and that the writers are doing this so "they can reach an audience that they can't reach otherwise."

Richard Branson can't issue 3 tips for starting a business without using LinkedIn?

"Original" content is a great idea. (As long as it's actually "good.")

Actually, 1-year returns aren’t bad

If you weren't tired enough of the special-dividend analysis on Fast Money, now they've got an ETF expert to take us to the next leg.

Matt Hougan on Wednesday trumpeted the PKW, which purports to own companies that have bought back 5% of their outstanding stock in the last 12 months. "Mostly the special dividend story is out," Hougan said, but the "hangover" is going to be "additional buybacks by companies" in 2013.

Brian Kelly questioned using this particular vehicle, saying "they don't trade that well." Hougan conceded he had initial liquidity concerns and first thought it "ridiculous or ridunculous," but then he realized, "You can get in and out."

A cup of coffee with Seema Mody*

Seema Mody, who caused Times Square streets to be blocked because she stops traffic, once again pulled up a chair at the Nasdaq on Wednesday's Fast Money (we opted against another picture this time, lest anyone starts to think we're overdoing it, but her burgundy sleeve treatment was again off the charts) and initiated conversation about SBUX and GMCR.

Mike Khouw wasn't a big fan of either, saying SBUX has a "little bit of a valuation problem there," while GMCR is a name he's "much more skeptical about generally."

Guy Adami said there's more to pour in GMCR; "I think it still goes higher." Tim Seymour said "Starbucks to me, this is the new YUM." Steve Grasso said the SBUX chart isn't bad; "I don't think it's a terrible set-up technically."

(*Everyone wishes.)

Sure, Tim Geithner is really going to tell Steve Liesman the actual rates the administration really will accept

Brian Kelly took a segue from the AAPL conversation at the top of Wednesday's Fast Money to say it was a "confluence of events" driving stocks.

One thing he noticed, Kelly said, is that the Aussie dollar did not rally, which is not what should happen if there's going to be a commodities rally.

Guy Adami said CP was reflective of rail strength but said, "I like KSU."

Tim Seymour, echoing what has been said countless times on Fast Money, said FXI is "not necessarily your purest China play," but "I think we're goin' higher."

Brian Kelly said "I still like natural gas." Steve Grasso reiterated that he had been long MT, AKS and X but he had "already sold all 3." (This writer is long AKS.)

Mike Khouw said WDC benefitted from an accelerated dividend and the notion it might be next for the Nasdaq 100.

Guy Adami said BAC went up so much likely because there were "shorts caught in this ... stands to reason it probably goes up again tomorrow."

Tim Seymour re-suggested Samsung, which trades on foreign exchanges, and we can't even fathom (nor could Yahoo finance tell us easily) which ones. (#nicestocktipforviewers).

Steve Grasso took heat for his bungled HPQ don't-buy call of November but declared, "I'm not in the business of catching bottoms here," then gave credit to Gary Berman of Clearview for noticing that every time HPQ is oversold, it "bounces unbelievably," and so, "I actually bought the stock yesterday," though he suggests a stop at $13.28 or $13. (Translation: I missed the call, but real men only buy once a stock has established a technical uptrend.) Grasso made HPQ his Final Trade.

Steve Liesman aired clips of his questions for Tim Geithner, and did you notice the way Tim was nervously tapping his thumbs?

Adami: Get long PAY

Tim Seymour on Wednesday's Fast Money said BIDU is a "hold 'em ... this is value territory ... I would buy this stock." But Brian Kelly had to take a mixed (non-)position on BFB, saying "I would fold 'em," but that he would definitely be interested in re-owning.

Guy Adami said PAY since about May has been "grim death," but "I think you can own this stock into earnings for a trade," and made it his Final Trade. But Brian Kelly countered, "I'd much rather be in EBAY."

Kelly said if you don't want to own gold, try platinum.

Mike Khouw's Final Trade was to sell NFLX strangles. Tim Seymour said to buy RSX. Brian Kelly said EWT.

Julia Boorstin, capable of stopping L.A. traffic (though it's generally stopped regardless), said stores are trying mannequin cameras to better identify what demographics are looking at what displays. Fast Money did actually put together an entertaining spoof with Guy Adami, who assured the mannequins he wasn't trying to hurt them with his AAPL calls.

Brown: AAPL a buy

Pete Najarian got first crack on Wednesday's Halftime Report at tackling the AAPL slide, admitting, "I haven't seen a reason yet necessarily to buy the stock."

Stephen Weiss said the selling reflects people "getting worried that have been in this stock a long time about the taxes next year, the headlines, sell sell sell."

Enis Taner pointed out, "The stock has missed earnings 2 straight quarters."

Josh Brown said "I would be a buyer here" and argued "a lot of this is mechanical."

Najarian took that further, saying, "Before we get too caught up in this whole thing we're talking about a 4% move to the downside." (Which became 6.4% by day's end.)

Henry Blodget, demonstrating that one can get banned from the securities industry yet still opine about stock valuations on TV, said Apple is "in sort of a product hold here," but the problem is "the margin is likely to compress."

However, at 12 times earnings, "that's just not a big multiple," and "valuation looks supportive ... psychology can change in a minute."

Stephen Weiss said the valuation issue is more about the price of the products vs. the stock. Blodget conceded that but insisted DELL and HPQ are "nowhere in tablets."

Momentum-stock glory

Stephen Weiss engaged in another Halftime Report debate on Wednesday, this time on FB, but quickly found himself outnumbered.

Josh Brown argued, "I think it's a trading buy. It triggered a buy signal on our technical radar about $23 a share ... it's not a retail stock anymore."

Weiss said "a lot of technical analysis is backward-looking," and while the stock had been oversold, "now it's overbought ... right now, you wanna sell it."

One thing they agreed on was, "You can't play it on valuation."

Pete Najarian jumped in, saying, "I own Facebook ... I think it was oversold at 20" and that 27 or 28 is "probably fair." Najarian cited mobile and sponsored stories and curiously said if "any inclusions come into play ... I think this thing's over 30."

Enis Taner said, "I think Facebook is to be bought on selloffs ... I wouldn't buy it here; I'd wait for 25."

Actually the guess here is that they probably just move in tandem

Mike Mayo, an elite guest for the Fast Money franchise, told Wednesday's Halftime that his recent C upgrade was the "first time in 5 years that I've recommended Citigroup stock," and that while Wednesday's news is important, it "really is only a step in the right direction," the company needs a "more radical business restructuring." But at least the company is saying, "Let's take better care of the shareholders."

Most significant about the discussion was the certainty with which Mayo picked C over BAC. "The name you wanna own right here, right now, is Citigroup, vs. Bank America (sic)," Mayo said.

Stephen Weiss disagreed with that, saying he knows Michael Corbat "is a stud," and he's not opposed to C, but he likes BAC better, "I think that stock goes a lot higher."

Pete Najarian hedged nothing, saying he would take "Bank of America right away ... I think it doesn't stop at 10 ... if it can close above 10.20, I think $11 is in the cards quick."

Enis Taner backed Mayo, saying "Citi's a far better own."

Stephen Weiss Brag Trade, trumpets big score in FCX

Kate Kelly reported on Wednesday's Halftime Report that Citi private bank "has put SAC on watch," and that SAC "may see more outflows in the 1st quarter," but the fact remains Stevie Cohen has made 12% through November, and "he continues to trade quite successfully."

Unbelievably good-looking Seema Mody said the Whitehorse IPO was postponed.

Rich Ilczyszyn attempted to argue every gold angle possible, saying "a better economy absolutely will put the top in gold," then saying that central banks figure to keep buying, "that's support," as well as the ETP ... but "maybe the top is in. I still think we have a good shot to the upside." And then there's the dollar correlation.

Anthony Grisanti said the key low level is 1,675-1,672, which could take us to 1,600 or even 1,530, while the key upper level is 1,755 or 1,800, but he thinks given the global climate, ultimately "gold will go higher."

Josh Brown warned against buying BBY. "People, do not hang around this thing looking for 17-cent dividends," Brown said, and also called PAY a "strategically challenged situation" and advised people to "walk away."

Stephen Weiss explained how his day went with FCX. "I actually started buying at 32.18 this morning up to 33, tag ends, I'm out of about 80% of it last time I looked." Weiss said the company is going back to its past conglomerate nature; "wait for this to settle out, and the trade's over."

Gina Martin Adams says ‘deteriorate’ about 5 or 6 times

Gina Martin Adams explained to Judge Wapner on Wednesday's Halftime Report she has a 1,390 S&P target for 2012 2013 because of "a lot of contingencies on policy ... in reality the economic deterioration started a year ago with deteriorating exports."

Echoing Martin Adams' favorite term, Larry McDonald, who either mentions a book title or Web address in every appearance, said "my 17 Lehman systemic risk indicators" are about "50% below the May levels ... but my economic indicators have deteriorated dramatically in the last 7-10 days."

McDonald again argued, "It's all gonna come down to means testing ... dividends, Medicare, Social Security," he said.

Enis Taner said it all comes down to earnings; "I just don't see the bullishness."

Josh Brown said there just aren't many options out there and people are opting for stocks.

Stephen Weiss, taking a page from the Gary Kaminsky vocabulary, said it's "very simple," Boehner booted 4 Tea Party members from committee roles, so there's more optimism about the cliff.

Enis Taner, joining Joe Terranova in the penalty box as the only Fast Money regulars on the same side on this one, said he prefers DELL over HPQ. Pete Najarian said GS rating on WM is "cleaning up in the trash area."

Najarian's Final Trade was FB. Stephen Weiss invoked the Floyd Trade, HK. Taner said DELL and Josh Brown said DVYE.

[Tuesday, December 4, 2012]

Michael Santoli seems to argue that the subject they were discussing wasn’t worth discussing

Michael Santoli, who apparently was the sole reason CNBC agreed to this curious Yahoo partnership, downplayed analyst 2013 S&P targets as a "vocational" exercise.

In fact, the truth is that 2012 was a typical year, "as advertised historically," Santoli said.

Keith McCullough said the 1970s multiple low was 7 times earnings.

Santoli said, "The market's not priced for an outright decline in earnings," but at the same time, "I think we're overstating the degree of sell-side bullishness out there."

This time Guy Adami actually doesn’t mention Sony

Guy Adami surely set himself up for an e-mail deluge on Tuesday's Fast Money when suggesting the outlook for AAPL shares may not be so hot.

"I think the price again is trying to tell you something," Adami said. "I think we might see lower from here."

Asking viewers not to e-mail, Adami said "a lot of people love the Samsung phones a lot more than they love these Apple phones" and questioned again what happens if Apple loses the "cool" factor.

Dennis Gartman actually said that AAPL reminds him of International Flavors & Fragrances in the early 1970s.

Mike Khouw said AAPL has had a good recovery but the 575 weekly puts were heavy, and "I'd start fading it."

Gold ‘exactly like last December’

Dennis Gartman said on Tuesday's Fast Money that there's a bit of deja vu in the gold trade but it's nevertheless "disconcerting."

"It's been a devastating gold trade since the start of December. It looks exactly like last December," Gartman said. "It's December, lot of people taking profits."

Tim Seymour echoed Joe Terranova on holding gold; "you don't just trade in and out of it," but how does that help anyone who's thinking about buying some.

Keith McCullough said John Paulson owns 21% of the gold ETF and "that's not normal."

Gartman said crude is under pressure in part because "we are finding more and more crude oil on a daily basis." In a strangely not-fully-explained argument, McCullough said if we "get the government out of the way" in gas and food prices, names such as NKE (his Final Trade), YUM and SBUX look "relatively good."

Just what the general public is yearning for — bottoming of hedge-fund redemptions

Anthony Scaramucci, perhaps planning to finance the sequel to "The Boys From Brazil" (that's a joke), dialed into Tuesday's Fast Money from Sao Paulo and declared, "We sort of think that the hedge fund redemptions are over."

Scaramucci, unlike Stephen Weiss earlier, said if there is no deal on the fiscal cliff, "That will have a very big negative impact on markets." He also said crime is high in Brazil, and so "I do think it's gonna be a while" before its economy breaks out.

But it was Scaramucci's contention that for hedge funds, "the net long exposure has kinda gone down from say, uh, +50% net long, to down about 30," that piqued the interest of Keith McCullough, who called it "ridunculous" to be "stating that 30-50% net long is normal."

Dennis Gartman actually underestimates NFLX’s beta

Dennis Gartman, taking a rare seat at the Nasdaq, questioned the NFLX afterhours gain during Tuesday's Fast Money.

"2016? We're getting- we're sending a stock up 13% on something that's going to go into effect in 2016? Give me a break," Gartman said.

Guy Adami said that if you went long NFLX for this pop, "I think you're pulling the ripcord tomorrow."

Adami was less charitable toward P. "I actually think this stock could go to like a buck," he said.

He practically yawned while mentioned Symantec after Seema Mody's report (we can't figure out why Mel instead of asking Mody about useless Twittering doesn't just ask a couple questions, 1) How in the world do you look like that and 2) can we just stop the show and stare at you a while) and said the Android phone sales reaffirm his AAPL concerns. And, his Final Trade was long HPQ.

Adami said GPS' slide Tuesday was a "monster move ... I'm actually inclined to buy it at some point tomorrow."

Khloe, or Kris Jenner (not the T. Rowe Price biotech guy)?

Helen Zhu, a rare Goldman Sachs get for Fast Money, said Tuesday there are "pretty reassuring cyclical signs" in China, including the term "firstly," and then explained, "A-share-market guys are probably a little bit too bearish on the cyclical side and on the reform side."

Keith McCullough cautioned, "I wouldn't be so reckless to say China bottomed — people have been trying to make that call for a long time."

Tim Seymour said WYNN has "not had a big catalyst." And, he claimed MELI has "bottomed." Meanwhile, YNDX, one of his stable of picks, got the call for Tuesday's Final Trade.

Mike Khouw isn't sold on BIG; "I still think they've got some real problems." Khouw said there was a big buyer in the December weekly 50 puts in SBUX and also in the non-weeklies.

Amelia Bourdeau returned to light up the screen and advised selling Aussie/dollar for 1.0500. Dennis Gartman's Final Trade was long Aussie against the yen.

Keith McCullough informed viewers, "People on the Street run portfolios. They don't run stocks," and made NKE his Final Trade.

Tim Seymour indicated a President Kardashian wouldn't be so bad; "the policies that are gonna be coming out of that administration might be better than the ones we have right now."

Weiss wins over a blogger

Anthony Grisanti warned on Tuesday's Halftime Report that gold may be hit by year-end "profit-taking" before an expected capital gains hike. The Ilchmeister pointed to the 200-day at 1,672 and said, "A close below that there's more pain ... if we close below 1,700, I think there's more downside potentially to that 200-day moving average."

Joe Terranova reiterated that newfound gold theme that Dennis Gartman praised, "A lot of people have incorrectly placed themselves as gold and silver traders," which doesn't tell anyone when to actually buy it if they're going to own it.

Mike Murphy was most bullish of the group, saying, "I think the selloff in gold here presents a buying opportunity."

Stephen Weiss suggested John Paulson's stockpile may be weighing on the price of gold; "He's probably selling and pressuring the market," Weiss said, before declaring gold is an "emotional trade ... I stay away from it." We discovered a blogger endorses Weiss' "pundit" theory, "Makes as much sense as anything."

Barry Bannister deploys his
Hines Ward-caliber stiff-arm
on Joe Terranova

Ordinarily CNBC guests, upon the opening greetings, respond with something like, "Glad to be on; thanks for having me."

Super-smooth 1,600 guy Barry Bannister had just 1 word for Judge Wapner Tuesday:


Judge said it's practically a "disservice" to refer to Bannister as a "market bull," given his lofty S&P forecast especially with Washington at loggerheads.

"We do need some fiscal clarity ... we need the politicians to fall in line," Bannister admitted.

But then he warned that we might make the same mistakes as Japan; "we have to be very careful on the policy side," which didn't really seem to be here nor there regarding S&P targets.

Bannister rattled off 5 sectors he likes — which seems to account for probably 80% of all stocks but maybe that's just our amateur assessment — which include financials, energy, materials, industrials and technology. He said financials figure to have the strongest pop because of a "P.E. re-rating."

Joe Terranova, who in the past has had trouble getting straight answers from Barry, asked him what happens after the 1,600, and will it be a "secular top."

Now, for most guests, this is a quality question and would prompt a quality answer.

Against Barry, this gets run over like a 185-pound cornerback in the open field, as Bannister explained, "This is a secular bear market" and conceded he's "a little concerned" about the "top" part; "it'll be a little harder to plow ahead from that level."

Bannister closed the interview by telling Judge, "Thanks."

Mike Murphy said "I couldn't agree more" with Bannister's 5-sector outlook and said if the S&P can get to 1,500, then 1,600 looks "very doable."

Joe Terranova said he would better understand a call for 1,475 in 6 months and 1,575 by year-end, but the trouble with Bannister's 1,600 is that it would happen in early 2013 making the end of the year questionable, and then trying to give a boost to whoever puts the title on this post, offered, "I think that's the headline."

How come Joe hasn’t put Congress in the penalty box?

Joe Terranova said on Tuesday's Halftime Report he has "begun to pare back risk," then made a curious prediction, that "the market is going to force the hand of D.C. policymakers ... I think on Friday we're gonna get a horrible unemployment report."

Mike Murphy said the S&P could see a breakout above 1,425 and declared, "Washington has to get something done."

Stephen Weiss admitted, "I have taken risk off," and insisted there are "lots of reasons to be negative."

Tony Fratto (and if you think you've heard every fiscal cliff theory about the strategy of each party, just wait another week or two) told Judge that approving a rate hike before Jan. 1 would be "almost impossible for Republicans to do."

As the notion was floated about a retroactive deal in January that would give both parties some degree of cover, Republicans saying they cut the hike and Obama saying taxes went up, Jon Najarian warned that if such a timeline occurs, "I think we're really dancin' with the devil there."

Stephen Weiss said the market won't collapse if there's no deal on Dec. 31. "I don't think it goes down hard," he said, affirming the January theory; "that's what ultimately happens."

Seems like Murphy wins

Stephen Weiss took on Mike Murphy in a TOL debate on Tuesday's Halftime Report and once again drew joint praise from the onlookers, with Weiss expressing skepticism at the homebuilding sector. "I think the stocks have gotten ahead of themselves," Weiss said.

Murphy said TOL is 15% off its peak, and "there's nothing about Toll Brothers right now that isn't working ... focused on the right market at the right time."

Weiss a couple times pointed to the 3x book value and called it "egregiously overvalued ... compared to historically where it's sold with the homebuilders," and in fact said he prefers BAC.

Asked who won, Jon Najarian said "they both did," though Najarian said it's the backlog "that is impressive at Toll Brothers." However, he admitted, "I have pared my holdings back" in that sector to 5% from 15%, "because of that valuation issue."

Joe Terranova pointed to the performance of TOL post-earnings and declared, "Stephen Weiss wins ... the Street does not believe the story."

Corporations help the government

ETH chief Farooq Kathwari on Tuesday's Halftime Report told Judge Wapner his company's special dividend coincides with the fiscal cliff; "timing of it is 100%," and then added this sweetener:

"I think it's also good for the government. They're going to get taxes this year which they most probably (sic) wouldn't have gotten," Kathwari said.

Kathwari dismissed Judge's contention that the dividend is for the benefit of the CEO. "Most CEOs don't want to pay dividends because they don't own stock," Kathwari said.

He said he's not emphasizing buybacks because he wants to keep a "reasonable float out there."

Jon Najarian said, "I salute him for uh, making a prudent use of this capital."

Grasso: $10.11 ‘kryptonite’ for BAC

Steve Grasso, making another brief appearance on Tuesday's Halftime Report, suggested the market has a bigger test ahead than just 1,405.

"This is just a real soft support," Grasso said. "Below this it's 1,395, that's your real support."

Grasso said BAC has potential, but "it's gotta close above $10.11. That level has been kryptonite for the name. If it doesn't close above there aggressively, you're probably looking at sub-9." Stephen Weiss, though, called BAC "a great stock."

Mike Murphy said special dividends are "so over-talked about," but Jon Najarian stressed that GOOG or MSFT could still declare the biggest special dividend of the bunch.

Generational buys aren’t what they used to be

Joe Terranova admitted to Judge Wapner on Tuesday's Halftime that "Yesterday afternoon I sold a quarter of my Apple equity position ... all it means is tactically I believe the appreciation is going to begin to slow."

AAPL is still "the name to own," Terranova insisted.

Mike Murphy said "I think Yahoo is a buy here" and can get to the low 20s, and to hold INTC if you're long. Stephen Weiss said he's "folding" DISH, "I like the cable sector better."

BIG in Joe’s penalty box

Stephen Weiss on Tuesday's Halftime Report delivered an elongated answer on CLF. "They're still producing too much steel ... I'm not buying into it ... they're still not cheap," Weiss said, apparently trying to talk himself out of a steel short, saying CLF or anyone is capable of a "dead-cat bounce."

Yet later in the show, Mike Murphy pointed to X and said, "I think the steels could start to rally." (This writer is long AKS.)

Joe Terranova hailed FL for footwear; "that's where I'd put my shoe dollars."

Terranova called MPC an "absolutely hold 'em," a name with "secular momentum." He compared it to RGIII; "the game has changed and it's changed for years."

Terranova said BIG is "structurally not a good company." (Translation: Missed the stock spike, had decent rationale for doing so.)

Jon Najarian said BAC could trend to 62 or even 60. Stephen Weiss said it's "deja vu all over again" with DRI and that "the discounting environment's not good," but the real takeaway is the company's "very very interesting" remarks about blowback from limiting employee hours for ObamaCare reasons.

Cute Kathy Lien coined a term we haven't heard yet, the notion of a "benign deal" in Washington, which could ignite a euro comeback, suggesting 1.30 on euro/dollar as a "good value point."

Jon Najarian's Final Trade was POT. Joe Terranova said buy AOL, Stephen Weiss said SODA and Mike Murphy said TGT.

[Monday, December 3, 2012]

Sounds like Don Yacktman wants to re-educate the dividend investor the same way Ron Johnson wants to re-educate the middle-tier shopping mall consumer

One of the more intriguing radical Wall Street arguments we've heard recently comes from Donald Yacktman, who told Monday's Fast Money crew he's "hopeful that the CEOs and boards are rational and eliminate cash dividends based on tax rates going from 15 to 43.6, and that's before New York and California get their share."

Yacktman a couple times used the term "weaned," as in cash-dividend investors need to get "weaned off of them," because "share buybacks and tender offers are more efficient," because you're only getting taxed on the proceeds above your cost basis.

Tim Seymour said buybacks shrink the float and boost your capital gain, so "I don't see why it matters."

But Yacktman insisted, "You don't pay a tax on all of the cash you receive" unlike with a cash dividend, and, for example, if a tender were made and everyone took it, it would be the "same thing as having a dividend but it would be taxed at a much lower rate."

We can't imagine the grannies with GE and XOM going for that kind of change, but whatever.

Mel Lee gave Josh Brown credit for the term "Cliffidends."

Foreign policy bust: Dennis Gartman said regime change in Iran ‘very much upon the table’

Remember that week or two of spiking inflation in Iran this fall?

We practically don't either. Yet Dennis Gartman was compelled on the Oct. 3 Fast Money to declare Iranian regime change "very much upon the table."

Now, the only thing very much on the table is the Oscar nomination for "Argo."

We have utterly no clue what the present inflation situation (hey that rhymes) is in Iran, but you know how in "Rounders" they talk about how it's not the cards, it's people's reaction to the cards, and in this case nothing is a greater "tell" than discovering that a Google search of "Iran inflation" produces on the first results page no articles since October, and most of them from Oct. 4 in fact.

He's been a commodities expert for 40 years, but Dennis likely isn’t on the secretary of state short list.

With gold around $1,700, Dennis Gartman decides it’s time to warn viewers about coin markup

Dennis Gartman began his conversation on Monday's Fast Money suggesting (you've heard this before) that the public seems to be enamored with the gold trade again, although the last time that happened it just kept going higher.

So Gartman instead offered free gold-buying advice: "I will counsel people to be careful when buying gold coins because the markup on gold coins can be preposterous, stupid, egregious, silly ... you can pay 30 and 40% if you're getting taken, it oughta be 1 and 2%. ... When you go to your local coin dealer, you're gonna get taken very very badly."

So basically, if you find yourself being charged $2,300 for a 1-ounce gold coin when Rich Ilczyszyn is telling you the price is around 1,730, you should probably not swipe the debit card so fast.

What Gartman didn't do was distinguish between bullion and collector coins, which is certainly more distinction than Fast Money has time to explain but happens to be fairly important, especially given that most of the public has no clue there's any difference.

Steve Grasso opened a can of worms in saying, "I don't think that the IRS tracks, uh, gold, gold coin sales."

Joe remains the only Fast Moneyite touting DELL shares

Pete Najarian indicated on Monday's Fast Money that he's intrigued by DELL.

But he's learned the hard way. "Unfortunately I was intrigued by Hewlett Packard not long ago," Najarian said.

Echoing Najarian, Guy Adami chipped in that "Hewlett Packard is a more interesting trade here" than DELL actually, based largely on that Nov. 20 "capitulation day."

Adami said he thinks NFLX is a buy around 73½ or 74. Najarian said VRSN seemed to benefit from a washout, and "I don't think you have to chase it but I do like this name."

Scott Nations said someone bought 3,000 January 28 calls in MSFT for 31 cents.

Unfortunately, he wasn’t able to tell you to chase it after he already chased it

Steve Grasso indicated to Fast Money viewers Monday that you're not necessarily too late when buying on a pop. "Even when you chase a lot of these trades, you can still make some money. I chased it with Costco ... I wound up making 3% already, a little over 3%."

In that vein, Pete Najarian said if you own LOW, "I think you can hold on." But Najarian tried to smooth his negative DECK call by saying he never wanted to short it but just missed the upside.

One thing nobody is "chasing" right now is JCP, though Grasso allowed, "It's tradeable ... I'd probably stay away for right now."

Tim Seymour asserted, "I don't need to buy Newmont here" but called China a "very interesting place to be buying."

How about #JillKelley?

Fast Money managed to provide viewers one excellent reason to tune in Monday (it's that picture above), as Seema Mody relayed Twitterers' thoughts about #leaveitin2012, or stuff they're apparently sick of owning/hearing about.

Pete Najarian's offering in this category was ZNGA; "I have never understood this story," Pete said, adding it could still be shorted (good luck trying that).

Steve Grasso suggested INTC, "just a commoditized business." Scott Nations curiously floated AMZN, apparently offended because "the margins are microscopic," but admitting, "this is not one I would short."

Guy Adami dissed an automaker. "I think GM you get out of right here," Adami said, while Tim Seymour knocked TSL. "I would stay away from solar," Seymour said.

Seymour's Final Trade was TV. Adami said CELG, Grasso said HD and Najarian said AIG.

Jane Wells spent the West Coast Wrap talking basically exclusively about Lindsay Lohan the L.A. port strike, and then offered this curious comment one doesn't hear often as to what re-routed shippers might think of other options: "Once you get used to going Oakland, or Mexico, you think, well that was kinda nice."

Guy Adami said KSU is a play on this, at 74½ or 75, "that's been the level to buy."

Doug Kass: ‘50-75% of people that own stocks in this country don’t even know that tax rates are rising’

Doug Kass offered not the greatest endorsement for the news media on Monday's Fast Money.

"I would bet that 50-75% of people that own stocks in this country don't even know that tax rates are rising," Kass said.

Hmmm. Wonder how many know the Giants won the World Series, or that Barack Obama was re-elected.

Because of this, and a couple other reasons, Kass argued, "I think the impact will be less than 1% so effectively no impact at all .... we should be fretting about the earnings cliff."

Kass said that if dividends and capital gains from 15-25%, the effect is minimal, because "only about 20 or 25% of trading is in taxable accounts."

Kass said there's a "50/50 chance" of a "grand fiscal bargain."

Tim Seymour carped, but Kass told him, "The risk to the bears is that the business sector is where the housing and automobile sector was 12 or 15 months ago."

Kass also tossed in a Brag Trade, buying PG at 64 and owning at 69.

Scott Nations disagreed with Kass' assessment. "He says that much of what goes on in the stock market is in tax-free accounts and I don't think that's true, maybe in tax-deferred accounts," Nations said.

Guy Adami believes in his heart that it’s possible to time the market

Give him props for candor.

Guy Adami at the top of Monday's Fast Money said something the panelists have to be believe but generally don't want to say: "I think we all do this show because we believe, and I believe in my heart, that you can actually time the market and pick stocks," Adami said.

Otherwise, it'd be known as "Fast Index Funding."

Adami predicted "we're headed towards this 1,375, 1,380 level and I think you trade that range."

Pete Najarian, without really making any point whatsoever, said 15.80 has been resistance for the XLF, financials "seem to fail at the 50-day," and he's watching that.

Steve Grasso said it doesn't matter which taxes are hiked; "GDP will be hit whether it's from the 98% or the 2%."

Mel Lee chuckled at Eamon Javers' observation that the parties could "show a little leg."

More from Monday's Fast Money (including how the gang sure comes across as old when talking about Justin Bieber (but at least Doug Kass didn't liken his commentary to a Three Dog Night theme)) later.

Joe saved himself $100 in 6 months by not taking Simon Baker’s bet

Joe Terranova argued in favor of Dell on Monday's Halftime Report, and found zero takers.

There are a "tremendous amount of headwinds already in the stock," Terranova said.

Simon Baker said it sounded like Terranova was "making the case for 5 years ... it's a bad business model ... I think HP would be a better buy."

But Mr. New World countered by first getting Baker to admit he's never looked at an ultrabook, then said, "There's some chatter out there right now that they're having conversations with Sharp, Intel, Qualcomm, this contingent collectively going after Sharp, that's obviously about display technology ... Sharp is close to Apple ... It seems as though Dell is a little bit more advanced in the thinking than HP is."

Baker allowed, "You did your homework this morning; I like that," but said the only thing that makes sense is maybe the special dividend, "and then move on from there ... just doesn't make any sense."

Terranova insisted, "I do my homework all the time, not just today," that he's been doing DELL homework for 5 years (talk about a grim assignment), then argued that DELL "potentially could be Yahoo."

Baker said he'd bet him "a hundred bucks" the stock is lower in 6 months. Terranova never responded.

Josh Brown, waffling so as not to offend anyone, first said "Joe made the more, uh informative argument," but that he had to agree with Baker ... to the point he made sell DELL his Final Trade.

Stephanie Link said "Joe made a great trading call" but that she doesn't like the DELL secular argument. Steve Grasso even chimed in unsolicited, saying "fade the pop in Dell" (and comparing Judge to Candy Crowley).

John Sculley has as much insight into today’s AAPL as Rich Kotite does on today’s Jets

Judge Wapner dubiously opened his chat with John Sculley asking him whether AAPL has peaked and adding, "You would know it better than most."

Sculley really went out on a limb, saying the company is experiencing "very significant change now," and "people are underestimating just how well Apple is run."

Judge then asked Sculley, "Why do you own it," and never got an answer. (Real answer: probably legacy shares.)

Sculley referred to "Johnny Ives" (sic). That made Joe Terranova's question preface, "obviously you know Steve rather well," all the more dubious.

Meanwhile, "I just don't get Groupon," Sculley said, while Judge asked a non-question in pointing out it's down 80%. "I'm very impressed with Facebook," Sculley said.

Asked which Silicon Valley giant someone should work for now, Sculley said, "I'd go work for a new company," particularly in "health care," because Bill Gates supposedly said if he were coming along now, "he wouldn't be hacking computers" (yeah right) but would be "hacking biology."

Judge invokes the Bob Seger Trade®

Aswath Damodaran, occasionally called upon by Judge Wapner to opine that Facebook's price could fluctuate, on Monday's Halftime Report might've been the first person in history wearing a checkered shirt on the Fast Money/Halftime Report franchise and said that "the reality is that the herd thinks it's a good stock right now ... I'd take my gains with a grain of salt."

He said his target is still about 28, which is "fairly decently priced ... I'm looking for incremental good news."

Judge Wapner said that at FB, "The mobile story has turned the page."

Damodaran said the issuing of special dividends is "neutral news," that some companies that are borrowing to do it are "pushing the envelope."

Joe actually claims he ‘hates to use’ the penalty box term again

Joe Terranova tried to airbrush history as best as possible on Monday's Halftime Report after Judge Wapner hectored him on his recent nonsensical BBY-on-the-buyout call.

Terranova insisted the clips didn't include his advice to not play the stock and his admission already that it didn't work. "First of all you play it through the options market," Terranova said, and it was a "lousy call," but actually Terranova originally did imply owning the stock, only to get buffaloed by Pete Najarian in the same episode and suggest viewers should use options.

For now, "You put it in the penalty box unfortunately. And I hate to use that term again, but, that's what you do." Josh Brown rightly observed that the stock is getting "cheaper and cheaper."

Terranova wasn't high on Sears, calling "the presentation in the stores, absolutely horrible."

Barry Bannister’s 1,600 S&P call looking dicey

Joe Terranova on Thursday's Halftime Report questioned, "Why is the market here, it should be lower," only to have Stephanie Link-Cramer (who did something new with her hair) offer, "I thought we would've been up a lot more ... on these pullbacks I think you absolutely wanna be buying."

Simon Baker argued, "The risk to the market is further on the downside than the upside."

Josh Brown contended, "We're really not in a fundamentally great climate."

Adam Parker, who basically said little more than Street earnings estimates for 2013 are overdone, said "the numbers have to come down a lot for 2013" but allowed that "we like increasing the China exposure."

Josh Brown said 88% of earnings growth has come from 10 stocks. Stephanie Link suggested, "If those 10 stocks pull back, those are the ones you actually wanna be buying."

There’s a reason to watch the 5 p.m. show

Simon Baker argued on Monday's Halftime that people will be "buying new cars now, so I think the AutoZones are going to struggle in this type of market," and shorting AZO was his Final Trade.

Josh Brown added an utterly useless recommendation for a show purportedly (once) called Fast Money, "just buy Tesla. That's gonna be a much more exciting story to follow. There'll be big dips, you can buy." Joe Terranova suggested TTM.

Brown called CATO a "pretty solid company" and because nobody talks about it, it's "really interesting to me."

Brown said SWN is "worth keeping on your radar."

Brown at one point referred to some contest regarding RIMM running from May to February, and we have no clue what he was talking about.

CNBC superfox (it's so great to see her again) Seema Mody promised to be on the 5 p.m. Fast Money.

Stephanie Link says one stock could ‘really go to the moon’

Steve Grasso's brief appearance on Monday's Halftime Report made almost no sense, as Grasso seemed to argue in favor of selling the steel names ("I'd rather just lock in my profit") while the screen text indicated he liked the sector into year-end. (This writer is long AKS.)

Simon Baker likes HCA, "hold onto it if you're long it already." Baker said "fold 'em" to PSX while Joe Terranova said it's in the penalty box "hold 'em."

Stephanie Link said DISH is a play on an upcoming FCC spectrum decision, and "If it is positive, I think the stock could really go to the moon."

Asked about JCP, Link-Cramer inexplicably had no opinion but said if the store traffic gets "stabilized," it will do better. Link-Cramer said "I would hold" COST.

Joe Terranova said TIF is in the penalty box a stock to be long "if you believe Japan in 2013 is gonna be the sleeper equities market that some do."

Judge Wapner was heard to say "52-weeks high" at one point.

Terranova's Final Trade (if you can call it that) is that 1) if the market is at the same level Tuesday it's at Monday, then 2) to be "taking off some risk." Stephanie Link said long YUM, which has received "harsh" treatment.

Back to CNBCfix home

CNBCfix.com home

Fast Money’s
great moments
of 2011

K-Fine bailed too early on year's most spectacular call

special report: CNBC ‘Fast Money’ trader positions often go undisclosed

♦ Daily online recaps often omit certain traders' holdings, appear voluntary, unenforced, no requirement for accuracy or timeliness, no description of the size of position or whether positions are for clients or traders' own accounts

Fast Money review

FM archive: Nov. 2012
FM archive: Oct. 2012
FM archive: Sept. 2012
FM archive: Aug. 2012
FM archive: July 2012
FM archive: June 2012
FM archive: May 2012
FM archive: Apr. 2012
FM archive: Mar. 2012
FM archive: Feb. 2012
FM archive: Jan. 2012
FM archive: Dec. 2011
FM archive: Nov. 2011
FM archive: Oct. 2011
FM archive: Sept. 2011
FM archive: Aug. 2011
FM archive: July 2011
FM archive: June 2011
FM archive: May 2011
FM archive: Apr. 2011
FM archive: Mar. 2011
FM archive: Feb. 2011
FM archive: Jan. 2011
FM archive: Dec. 2010
FM archive: Nov. 2010
FM archive: Oct. 2010
FM archive: Sept. 2010
FM archive: Aug. 2010
FM archive: July 2010
FM archive: June 2010
FM archive: May 2010
FM archive: Apr. 2010
FM archive: Mar. 2010
FM archive: Feb. 2010
FM archive: Jan. 2010
FM archive: Dec. 2009
FM archive: Nov. 2009
FM archive: Oct. 2009
FM archive: Sept. 2009
FM archive: Aug. 2009
FM archive: July 2009
FM archive: June 2009
FM archive: May 2009
FM archive: April 2009
FM archive: Mar. 2009
FM Viewers Guide
Fast Money cliches

CNBCfix capsules:
Movie of the week

♦ Bonnie and Clyde
♦ Rain Man
♦ The Paper Chase
♦ The Cooler
♦ Giant & There Will Be Blood
♦ Return of the Jedi
♦ Rocky II
♦ The Last Picture Show & Friday Night Lights
♦ She's Out of My League
♦ Con Air

Movie review:
‘Wall Street’

Gordon Gekko:
The Michael Corleone
of Wall Street

CNBC/cable TV
star bios

♦ Jim Cramer
♦ Charles Gasparino
♦ Maria Bartiromo
♦ Lawrence Kudlow
♦ Karen Finerman
♦ Michelle Caruso-Cabrera
♦ Jane Wells
♦ Erin Burnett
♦ David Faber
♦ Guy Adami
♦ Jeff Macke
♦ Pete Najarian
♦ Jon Najarian
♦ Tim Seymour
♦ Zachary Karabell
♦ Becky Quick
♦ Joe Kernen
♦ Nicole Lapin
♦ John Harwood
♦ Steve Liesman
♦ Margaret Brennan
♦ Bertha Coombs
♦ Mary Thompson
♦ Trish Regan
♦ Melissa Francis
♦ Dennis Kneale
♦ Rebecca Jarvis
♦ Darren Rovell
♦ Carl Quintanilla
♦ Diana Olick
♦ Dylan Ratigan
♦ Eric Bolling
♦ Anderson Cooper
♦ Neil Cavuto
♦ Liz Claman
♦ Monica Crowley
♦ Bill O'Reilly
♦ Rachel Maddow
♦ Susie Gharib
♦ Jane Skinner
♦ Kimberly Guilfoyle
♦ Martha MacCallum
♦ Courtney Friel
♦ Uma Pemmaraju
♦ Joe Scarborough
♦ Terry Keenan
♦ Chrystia Freeland
♦ Christine Romans

CNBC guest bios

♦ Bill Gross
♦ Dennis Gartman
♦ Diane Swonk
♦ Meredith Whitney
♦ Richard X. Bove
♦ Arthur Laffer
♦ Jared Bernstein
♦ Doug Kass
♦ David Malpass
♦ Donald Luskin
♦ Herb Greenberg
♦ Robert Reich
♦ Steve Moore
♦ Vince Farrell
♦ Joe LaVorgna
♦ A. Gary Shilling
♦ Joe Battipaglia
♦ Addison Armstrong
♦ Jack Bouroudjian
♦ Stefan Abrams
♦ Warren Buffett