The Raging Fire

by Tim Knight at Slope of Hope

I’ve been trading the stock market for nearly thirty years, virtually non-stop. Today (that is, Monday, August 24) easily ranks in the top five strangest, craziest days in the thousands upon thousands of trading days I’ve ever witnessed. I felt like I was entering a cage of gorillas that had just ingested a large quantity of PCP. It felt dangerous and really, really unpredictable.

As I mentioned on my lengthy Saturday post:

I expect (and, again, hope – – because, God forgive me, I’m actually long five ETFs in size right now) we get a meaningful relief rally, carrying us up to the psychologically-important 17,000 level. At that point, please don’t be anywhere between me and my keyboard, because I am going to be shorting anything with a ticker symbol in size.

Well, God most certainly did not forgive me. If this permabear’s time machine was working, he’d go back to Thursday morning, warn the slightly-younger Tim to not cover a single position, and further warn him not to buy a single thing.

Instead, I waited sleeplessly through Sunday night and early Monday morning for the opening bell to see how big a chunk of flesh those longs would take out of my 55 (much smaller) short positions. Well, the “tax” was quite hefty. Hedging as I did wiped out half of the profits I would have had otherwise, just as covering wiped out half my profits the prior Friday. I had relinquished tens of thousands of dollars of extra profit just to be – – well – – “safe.”

I think we can all agree that approximately nobody anticipated the Dow falling 1,000 points right from the start of Monday morning. Frankly, the kind of “lift” I am seeing at the moment I am typing this (with the ES up 42

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