Monday, October 27, 2008


An update on stocks previously listed as good Bear Market Stock Pics and have entered my BUY zones:

JWN, Nordstrom
Previous posts regarding JWN:
JWN, Down But Not Out
VFC's Stock Market Crash Picks Part I
Bear Market Picks Update

As I've previously posted, I like JWN more and more the lower it drops. It's a given that the luxury retailers such as Nordstrom and Macy's are going to take a hit in an economic downturn, but there's no reason to believe that Nordstrom, and it's stock price, will not recover when the economy as a whole begins to recover.

The next few quarters will be tough on Nordstrom, and corners will need to be cut, (the company has already began reducing employee hours and turning full time employees into part time employees), but there is a solid base of clientele that can afford to shop at the luxury retailers even in an economic downturn.

Pessimism dominates our economy right now, much of it created by politicians or economists with political agendas, but once the bailouts begin to take root and people begin looking towards the future again, that pessimism will subside and money will start pouring into the market. In VFC's opinion, some of that will begin to materialize shortly after the elections when the market can price in the next President's economic plans.

For now, this pessimism is giving the little guy a great buying opportunity. Times like this are when the little guy should be buckling down and looking for bargains that will pay off when the economy rebounds. JWN, in VFC's opinion, is one of those bargains that will pay off in the future.

Now that the Nordstrom stock is trading in the mid teens, that's my personal indicator to pick up my accumulation of JWN, but I'm holding back on the real share purchases until it trades right around ten dollars, a price target that I believe this stock will hit.

- A prolonged economic slump of 2-3 years could let Nordstrom's debt catch up and, hampered by a credit crunch, the company is unable to deal with this debt without liquidating assets. In VFC's opinion, this economic downturn will not be counted in the years that the Politicians and 'Experts' are now predicting. After the elections, I have a feeling the Politicians will be speaking a lot more positively about the true economic state of our country.

- Nordstrom weathers the storm and the company, and it's stock price, rebound when the economy begins to rebound.

In 2-3 years we'll be enjoying a rebounded stock price, in my opinion. This could change depending on the rhetoric of the next President after the elections.

VFC's Bear Market Stock Picks Part I
VFC's Bear Market Picks Part II
VFC's Bear Market Picks Part III
VFC's Bear Market Non Picks Part
VFC's Stock Updates
VFC's Bear Market Picks Part IV; CRYP, CSUH.OB

CPST, Capstone Turbine Corp:

CPST has almost come full circle since the first time I began buying shares when it traded for under a buck.

Use the Google Search Box located at the top of the page to search VFC's Stock House for previous posts regarding Capstone (CPST)

When gas prices began to skyrocket and the country turned towards alternative energy, I began looking for a 'Green' stock (environmentally green, not green for the portfolio, although CPST brought both). I had missed the ethanol boat, but I never believed that was our answer to rising gas prices anyway, and the wind and solar stocks were no longer 'unknowns'.

I stumbled across CPST from a stock message board tip, and I liked what I saw. The stock was still somewhat undiscovered and the established, low-emission microturbines that Capstone produced were already being shipped worldwide and served as an alternative to the high oil prices.

In that time, CPST reached a high of the mid fours before slowly declining back to it's current level.

I believe the economic conditions have created another great buying opportunity for CPST, and the stock is once again trading below the radar.

Capstone could still be a couple of years away from making a profit, but there is a large log of backorders that are shipping early, according to the company's reports.

I'll be adding to my shares during that time, especially when the stock is trading this close to a buck.

- The company never turns a profit and the demand for Capstone's microturbine technology dissipates.
- The current drop in oil prices keeps companies from heavily pursuing alternatives such as Capstone's microturbines.

- We're in on the ground floor, as far as stock price is concerned, and any spike upwards gives investors a good selling opportunity.
- Any significant positive news can cause shorts to cover, leading to a price increase.
- Orders for the microturbines continue to roll in and the company marches towards profitability. Big investors line up and accumulate CPST, causing the price to rise higher.

I'm in for at least five years. I may take advantage of any unsuspected spikes in price to flip some shares.

Don't Believe the Hype Stock
CEGE, Cell Genesys:
CEGE rose 50% today and closed at 15 cents. A great one day return on your money, but at this point, I'm not buying into the Cell Genesys story, post-VITAL-trials.

The company recently halted both of it's VITAL trials for GVAX, and I see little reason to remain invested in this company at this point in time. There is rumor of a buyout or a merger, and the company still has some cash on hand, but CEGE is no longer a speculative investment, it's a speculative trade.

I don't like getting into stocks (or back into them) solely for the purpose of trading or waiting for a possible buyout, and CEGE is no exception.

CEGE may pay great gains for traders, and there may be a buyout in the works, but the risk-reward does not work out for me here in CEGE.

- All speculation at this point.

- In the volatility, you could gain 50% in one day (or more if a buyout materializes).

If a buyout is in the works, I'd expect news soon, within weeks.
LinkShare  Referral  Prg

Believe the Hype
SIRI, Sirius XM Satellite Radio:
SIRI was another good gainer today, closing at 38 cents, up 30%.

The only investors that have enjoyed SIRI for the past couple of years have been the shorts, many who rode the stock down to it's current levels from it's high of over nine dollars.

The DOJ and the FCC simply killed this company by taking so long to approve the merger, and when the merger was finally approved the economy tanked and XM's huge debt bill sat on Mel Karmazin's shoulders like a big pink elephant.

The market and the shorts will continue to keep downward pressure on the stock, but once the XM debt issue becomes clearer and the merger synergies take effect, SIRI may actually begin to rebound.

A reverse stock split is another possibility.
Gerber Life Insurance

DNDN, Dendreon:
Dendreon recently released the interim results from it's IMPACT trial measuring Provenge's effectiveness in extending the lives of patients with advanced prostate cancer.

These results, while not conclusive, showed that indications are that Provenge works, but it might not work enough to garner FDA approval.

While cancer immunotherapies have been dropping like flies lately, Provenge may be the holy grail that launches cancer immunotherapy treatment into the mainstream of America. For that to happen, final results need to indicate that Provenge increases the life of patients by roughly 22%.

Results are due out mid 2009.

Since the interim results were released, shorts have quietly begun to cover their positions. No one on Wall Street gave Provenge a chance, not even on the interim, and now the shorts are jitterey, covering almost four million shares since the release of results, according to recent news.

Last March we saw how the DNDN stock price reacts to the potential of a Provenge approval, and that prospect doesn't bode well for someone short if the price jumps up twenty dollars in a short runup.

DNDN is always on my accumulate list until we hear a final decision on the Provenge story, a story laced with controversy.

Search VFC's Stock House for previous posts regarding Provenge and Dendreon.
ShareBuilder - Welcome page

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

VFC's Bear Market Stock Picks Update: AGEN, MVL, INSM, CSUH.OB

An Update
AGEN, Antigenics:
Back in April, Antigenics Inc received approval in Russia to market and distribute it's kidney cancer vaccine Oncophage.

That approval in Russia made Oncophage the first cancer immunotherapy treatment approved in the world.

A few week ago, I listed AGEN as a great Bear Market pick because regardless of where the stock is trading right now, chances are the stock price will rise when revenues start rolling in. Since the stock has been trading in the one dollar range, I've been buying.

Today the company announced that they have submitted a Marketing Authorization Application (MAA) to the European Medicines Agency (EMEA) requesting approval for Oncophage in Europe. The approval process in Europe usually takes 12-18 months, so this news will not affect the stock price in the short term (in a bull market news like this usually leads to a short-term spike in price for the small biotechs). The fact that the European marketing request is under the conditional approval program could give Antigenics an additional edge since Oncophage provides treatment for a currently unmet medical need.

AGEN, with it's low volume and little analyst coverage, is an easily manipulated stock that has sunk in the Bear Market. As is the case with the market as a whole right now, the average investor gets scared into selling when they should be buying, and that is the case with AGEN right now.

With an approval in Russia, revenue is on its way, and we should see a nice jump in stock price when the company begins reporting that revenue.

In the meantime, I'm taking advantage of shopping at the dollar shop for AGEN!

- Sales of Oncophage do not meet expectations in Russia.
- Oncophage does not receive marketing approval in Europe, or anywhere else in the world.
- A prolonged economic slump continues to put downward pressure on the AGEN stock.

- AGEN is undervalued, regardless of additional approvals.
- A market rebound will reflect on the AGEN stock price.
- Oncophage receives approval in Europe.
- Antigenics begins reporting revenue for Oncophage.

If the market begins to rebound, possibly after the elections, AGEN should move up regardless of any additional news. When the company reports revenues, and we move closer to an EMEA decision in Europe, we're looking at a triple from here, at the very least (in VFC's opinion). A triple is good in any market, but I think we'll approach the six dollar range in the next 18 months.

VFC's Bear Market Stock Picks Part I
VFC's Bear Market Picks Part II
VFC's Bear Market Picks Part III
VFC's Bear Market Non Picks Part
VFC's Stock Updates
VFC's Bear Market Picks Part IV; CRYP, CSUH.OB

MVL, Marvel Entertainment:
One stock that is holding up nicely in this bear market is MVL. Weak economy aside, Marvel Enterprises has released two blockbuster movies this year, The Incredible Hulk and Iron Man, and both will undoubtedly be hot item DVDs for the Christmas season as well.

Also released just in time for the Christmas season is the new Spider Man Web of Shadows video game, available now for the PS3, PS2, PSP, NintendoDS, Nintendo Wii and WindowsPC. Even in a down economy, people will be going to movies and playing their Playstations. If there's an entertainment company that could survive this economic storm, Marvel just might be that company.

While the market has dropped 40%, MVL has lost little value and shouldn't disappoint in the next earnings call when the movie profits and merchandise sales should be included in the totals.

I'm still hoping for a dip into the mid-twenties, but it may be wishful thinking, so I'm buying on any dip below thirty bucks for the time being.

- A very pronounced and prolonged economic slump is the only thing that could seriously hinder MVL's future prospects at this point. They've already showed that they could make a blockbuster out of a 'B' hero (Iron Man) and the Marvel franchise has over 5,000 characters that they can play with.
- People stop watching super hero movies and quit playing super hero games while Kids give up their Spider-Man underoos.

- The Spider Man name is the strongest of all super hero names and will continue to bring in revenue for Marvel for years to come.
- Marvel continues to draw on it's long list of characters to produce successful movies well into the future.
- MVL stock rebounds when the market rebounds.
- Marvel increases it's world wide exposure with it's Dubai theme park.
- Merchandise and licensing sales continue to increase as the studio releases new movies.

MVL is one stock that has a chance to continue upward momentum during the economic slump. Iron Man and Hulk profits have yet to be entirely reported and the Christmas season could be a good one for Marvel with the release of Web of Shadows. In the short term the stock could rise if the market bottoms off or rebounds, and should go higher when the market recovers.
Long term, I'm in this one for a decade.

INSM, Insmed
Previously Posted:
VFC's Follow-on Biologics Pick, INSM
INSM: Signs of Life
Insmed Update

Insmed could be the biggest immediate beneficiary when Congress finally initiates legislation of follow-on-biologics.

What are Follow-On Biologics?
Follow-on biologics are versions of approved biologics that are developed after the original product has been created with the intention of marketing them after the patent on the innovator product has expired, thus bringing competition to monopolistic markets. In other words, when the patents on current drugs expire, other companies can step in with their own, possibly cheaper, products to create competition in the drug market.

Currently, Insmed has two follow-on candidates in early trials, and two others in pre-clinical stages to go along with the already FDA approved Iplex and an Oncology program. Insmed is far from a one-trick pony. Any failures or bad news along the way come with the support cushion of knowing that Insmed has many other potential money makers at various stages of development.

IPLEX- Almost two years ago, Insmed lost a patent-violation court case where it was argued that Insmed’s drug Iplex violated Tercica’s patent for it’s similar drug, Increlex. Both drugs were administered as insulin-like growth factor for short-statured patients, but Insmed’s drug, Iplex, is the superior drug. Iplex only needs to be injected once a day while Tercica’s drug, Increlex, is a twice a day shot. Insmed is also currently conducting various-phased trials for Iplex treatments for other indications, such as ALS, HIV and MMD. Eventually, Iplex itself has the potential for blockbuster status, although some of that money will be dished out to Tercica thanks to the patent infringement case.

With the potential of Iplex and the follow-on pipeline, INSM is well worth the risk while trading below a dollar, and right now it's trading below fifty cents.

Investors in INSM got another dose of good news recently when the NASDAQ suspended it's minimum listing standards until next year. That gives Insmed additional time to get the stock price above a dollar and any good news regarding any of the drug candidates could spike INSM to above a buck for good.

Congress has been preoccupied dealing with the economic crisis and the elections, so I believe we may not see any definitive legislation regarding follow-on-biologics until next year, but even with the delay, Insmed will still be conducting trials and advancing their pipeline.

I'm accumulating INSM, and I intend to accumulate as long as this stock is below a dollar. With the market conditions giving investors an opportunity to bargain shop, INSM is one of the best high-risk, higher-reward choices out there. VFC is playing accumulate, accumulate, hold with INSM.

- Follow-on legislation fails and Insmed is unable to bring their follow-ons to market.
- Iplex fails to prove effective in any treatments other than short-stature.
- Company is de-listed from the NASDAQ because it fails to meet minimum listing rules.

- At forty cents, the risk is worth taking.
- Multiple drug candidates in the pipeline at various stages of development, inclding an already approved drug, Iplex.
- Follow-on legislation passes and Insmed is ready to take advantage.

Long term, aside from some possible opportunities to trade in and out. Follow-ons are at least five years from bringing in revenue, but Iplex could prove profitable before that time. I'm accumulating strong now and am thinking five to ten years down the road with INSM.
ShareBuilder- Welcome page

CSUH.OB, Celsius Holdings:
A quick update on CSUH.OB. After tripling to seven cents earlier this week, I thought we'd see an immediate retracement to around the three cent range, but that hasn't happened. Even in todays significant market drop, CSUH.OB remained level at six cents. I give it another week before I'm convinced we're strong at six cents, but I believe we've got some new buyers coming in, hence the large volume spike the other day and the support at five to six cents.

With the radio ads taking place and Celsius gaining traction with help from the Vitamin Shoppe and other promotions, we could be in for a real Bear Market Surprise!
Wirefly - Outrageous Deal: Samsung Instinct Touch Screen Phone + Free Bluetooth Headset. Enter coupon code BDAYACCD4B02552 at checkout.

Monday, October 20, 2008

VFC's Stock Picks Update; CRYP, CSUH.OB

CRYP, CryptoLogic Limited:
CryptoLogic Limited is a leading software developer for the global Internet gaming market.

CRYP is a stock that I have been watching for a couple of years, and although the stock price has tumbled during that time, I believe that right now is the time to buy.

CRYP began to drop shortly after I began watching the stock, in part because the US Congress passed regulation that made Internet gambling illegal in the United States. CryptoLogic looked to benefit from Internet gambling in the US, but since a large part of their revenue comes from the realm of Internet gaming, to include gambling, the stock took a hit. In VFC's opinion the stock took too much of a hit and has dropped down into the 'great, discounted price' range.

Once the stock hit below ten bucks, I bought a few shares, but I waited to see if it would drop any more before I really bought in. I wasn't quite ready to put what I thought was a good deal into one of VFC's Bear Market Stock Updates.

After today's news from the company, CRYP looks to be another great deal in this Bear Market, especially if we happen to hit the threes again.

Today, CryptoLogic announced a five-year licensing agreement with PartyGaming Plc, one of the world's largest online gaming operators. According to the Press Release, this licensing agreement should start paying off in the form of revenues by early next year.

Aside from this significant agreement, the company issued a second Press Release that outlines the company's business plan moving forward in 2009. Highlights from the second release include an expected increase in revenue from CryptoLogic's Internet Casino and the fact that operating costs are decreasing as revenue increases.

Aside from the Regulation of Internet gambling in the US, the stock took a hit because investors did not have much faith in the management team, in my opinion. Today's PRs resulted in a 15% spike in the stock, but more importantly, they gave investors a reason to be confident in a return-on-investment moving forward.

Market volatility may influence this stock for the short term, but in the long term, CRYP should prove to be a bargain at these prices.

- The many new licensing agreements signed by the company do not pay off as expected and the stock price stagnates.
- Governments find ways to restrict Internet gambling.

- The new licensing agreements bring in expected revenue and the stock responds by trending higher.
- CryptoLogic continues to solidify it's place as a leader in the Internet gaming software arena and continues to sign new licensing agreements.

The short term may be a bouncy ride in this market, but in about 18 months I think we will have seen real growth in the business and in the stock price.
ShareBuilder- Welcome page

UPDATE: CSUH.OB, Celsius Holdings

Celsius Holdings, the producer of the world's first calorie burning beverage, has launched a new advertising campaign that will culminate in targeted TV ads after the elections. The new advertising campaign includes radio commercials, a spot by weight-loss guru Jorge Hane and a sponsorship of the Chris Evert Tennis Tournament in Florida.

CEO Steve Haley outlined immediate and long-term plans for Celsius when he answered some of my questions in a recent email, and with Carl DeSantis now aboard, I'm confident that we have a real winner in CSUH.OB.

The reason for today's update (after just reporting on CSUH.OB last week when I took advantage of the .025 cent sale), is the significant price action of the stock (up nearly 120%) and the large volume behind the increase in price (nearly 1.5 million shares traded today). This action could indicate that we may have hit bottom at two cents, and it could be an indication that the large seller that was putting downward pressure on the stock could be finished selling, or it could be that more buyers are lining up leading to the new found upward pressure.

The fact is, nothing besides a near triple in price in the past week, has changed with the stock. I still believe that the advertising campaign is exactly what Celsius need right now, and I still believe in the management team to effectively bring the Celsius product to the awareness of the consumer. The Celsius product sells itself, once people know about it, and the recent Green Tea launch is a great non-carbonated addition to the line of five carbonated flavors.

The next three quarters, as I've said before, are crucial. We need to see evidence of large reorders coming in from the distributors and we need to see evidence that the advertising campaign is turning into sales.

That being said, an unexpected double like we saw today is great news for investors, especially for those that bought at two cents! I'm holding long onto Celsius. Once the advertising campaign is in full swing, and people are turned onto the product, the stock price should reward patient investors.

- The company is unable to sustain operations until real revenue growth kicks in.
- Too much competition in the market forces Celsius out.
At these prices risk is minimal compared to possible rewards, in my opinion.

- Investors buying now are in on the ground floor of a business that will grow substantially after a solid advertising campaign kicks in.
- Reorders roll in from distributors.
- Celsius continues to grow in international markets, similar to the deals in Lebanon, Chile and the Bahamas.

Short Term: Days like today are great for making a quick buck with trading shares (Half of the shares I bought at .025 last week hit my .07 limit order today for a quick triple, and hopefully I'll be able to buy back in at a lower price, but I won't complain if we head for good), and every few months this stock jumps for a chance to sell and reducing the overall risk of the investment.

Long Term: I've got plenty of shares that I'm holding for the long haul. If we see growth in the next three quarters, the stock price should begin to reward patient investors in the mid-term.

VFC's Bear Market Stock Picks Part I
VFC's Bear Market Picks Part II
VFC's Bear Market Picks Part III
VFC's Bear Market Non Picks
VFC's Stock Updates

Paradysz Matera

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Stock Updates and Some Interesting Developments in the World of Cancer Treatment: CEGE, DNDN, SIRI, JWN, CSUH.OB

Amid the current market volatility, there's still some good picks, non-picks and interesting developments out there.

VFC's Stock House stays on top of the good ones.

CEGE, Cell Genesys:
The VITAL-I trial being conducted by Cell Genesys (CEGE) to investigate the effectiveness of it's prostate cancer treatment, GVAX, has been halted after and independent review cited that the trial is unlikely to succeed.

Shares of CEGE plunged to 17 cents yesterday amid the news. VITAL-I was already halted after the VITAL-II trial was stopped due to an increase of deaths in the GVAX/Taxotere arm of the trial, but both trial are now permanently halted.

In light of this news, it's safe to say that Cell Genesys is finished. The company has laid off 75% of its workforce and aside from a merger or a buyout, there's no news imminent that would make CEGE a worthwhile long or short term investment. In my opinion, the only reason why the stock is not trading under ten cents is because partner Takeda Pharmaceuticals has yet to announce their plan for removing themselves from their partnership with Cell Genesys that was announced back in May.

I dumped my remaining CEGE shares yesterday for fifteen cents. The risk of holding on at this point outweighs any possible reward. Cell Genesys and it's stock will probably take the course of Genitope (GTOP) after their trial failure last December, destined to a stock price below ten cents and a delisting.

Cell Genesys is out of the picture, and for prostat cancer vaccines, Provenge remains standing.

- HUGE, at this point. Unless you're a day trader (and if you are I doubt you'd read VFC's Stock House) there's no reason to hold onto CEGE. The stock will be under ten cents before long.

- Merger or buyout is a small possibility, but a possibility that does not outweigh the risk of losing everything.

DNDN, Dendreon:
Dendreon recently released interim results of their Phase III IMPACT trial which investigates the ability of their prostate cancer treatment, Provenge, to extend the lives of prostate cancer patients.

Mid term results were encouraging, as patients receiving Provenge were shown to live 20% longer than those that did not. In order for the IMPACT trial to be called a success, that percentage needs to hit approximately 22% by trial conclusion, due next year. Those results look to be within reach.

Dendreon's primary competition in the market has just been eliminated when the GVAX trials failed, so if Provenge does make it to market, Dendreon will essentially control the market for advanced prostate cancer treatment.

In an ironic twist of fate, the two doctors that lobbied against Provenge approval last year, did so because they had vested interest in Novacea's prostate cancer drug Asentar, and GVAX from Cell Genesys.

Both companies have now gone bust.

As with all biotechs, an investment in Dendreon is not without risks, but the interim results indicate success is within reach and Provenge is now the only alternative to Taxotere for advanced prostate cancer that is anywhere close to market.

- Provenge trial fails, stock price slides to below a dollar.

- Stock will skyrocket on news of positive results.
- Partnership or buyout news is always a possibility that will move the stock price.

Short term- DNDN is heavily shorted, and when news is released, any short covering causes fairly significant price swings that offer the opportunity to sell high(er) and buy back in low(er), reducing the overall risk of the investment. Any news on partnership will rise the price enough to allow us to take some profits, and buy back in at lower prices after profit taking sets in. In my opinion, the only time the stock price would rise, and stay at an elevated level, is if positive results are released next year.

Long term- Late 2009 when Dendreon releases results on the IMPACT trial. If positive, the stock price will rocket upwards and remain elevated up until approval time. If Provenge makes it to market, there is little competition now that GVAX is out of the way.
Zecco Holdings

SIRI, Sirius XM:
Sirius XM CEO Mel Karmazin announced a wave of layoffs at the XM building in Washington, DC, that eliminated duplicate positions withing the combined company.
Karmazin is taking quick action to realize the benefits of the newly merged company as SIRI is desparate for free cash flow with huge debt bills due in 2009.

Aside from the recent layoffs in DC, completely merged programming is due in November, months ahead of schedule and another step in the process towards enjoying the 450 million dollar benefit of synergies that Karmazin had promised.

With SatRad competing with iPods and MP3 players in the music device market, Sirius XM has just introduced a new portable receiver that is a step up from the Sirius Stiletto in terms of size and weight. Gadgets such as this one will make it easier to sell the idea of SatRad outside of the automobile industry.

The SIRI stock is still getting crushed in the market, but as synergies are realized and the debt issue becomes clearer, the stock price should rebound. Mel Karmazin, himself, has millions of his own shares that he most certainly would like to see rebound.

In the short term, I'm taking advantage of this stock price in the mid-thirties.

- A huge debt bill due in 2009 is a huge burden to the stock price. Once terms of a refinancing are out, the stock price should react. If the terms are not-so-good, the company may be forced to do a reverse split to get the stock price back above a dollar.

- The business is still growing, and the synergies of a merged company will begin to bear results next year. Once Sirius XM sees profitable territory, and gets the debt issue somewhat resolved, a rebound will be due.

It's tough to say exactly when SIRI will begin to rebound, but I'm taking advantage of these depressed prices. I've got a three to five year outlook with my shares of SIRI.
Sirius Satellite Radio Inc.

JWN, Nordtrom:
JWN becomes more attractive to me the lower it drops. Retailers are getting hammered in a slow economy, but Nordstrom is one luxury retailer that I can see weathering the storm. Nordstrom will take their lumps, along with the rest of the sector, but it's still one-stop shopping for all of those that can still afford to shop there in a slumping economy.

JWN, Down but Not Out
VFC's Bear Market Stock Picks Part I

As for the stock, I like it's long term potential. With the market volatility the way it is, buying on dips and selling on spikes is the way to go with a lot of stocks, but with JWN, I say wait for the dips and buy with the intention of holding for a couple of years.

The stock has already hit the mid-teens level that I was looking for, and I think we're going to dip down to under ten dollars before it's all said and done.

I'm buying in the mid teens, but I'll pick up my buying around the ten dollar mark, hopefully lower, which I think we'll hit within the next few months.

As for fears of a long depression and economic slump that the politicians with political agendas are telling us, I don't see it happening. We're in a pronounced downturn due to bad fiscal responsibility by the individual as well as the big boys in the banks and on Wall Street, but our economy is by no means destroyed. The days of free spending and racking up serious debt are over for now (they'll be back because too many people have short memories), but once the elections are over and the recovery plans begin to take shape, things will be somewhat back to normal. Not to mention, there's billions on the sidelines waiting to get back into the market. When that time happens, JWN will be a beneficiary of that influx of capital. In VFC's humble opinion.

- Economic slump lasts for years, Nordstrom and other luxury retailers take a huge hit.
- Nordtrom does not recover, as shoppers stick to cheaper alternatives to the luxury goods offered by Nordtrom.

- Nordstrom rebounds when the economy picks up leading to at least a double in stock down the road, if not more.

Nordstrom suffers through two or three bad quarters before sales pick up again and the economy begins to rebound. I've got long term goals with JWN, and I won't sell any shares until I think we've peaked at the next economic cycle. / Firenze Seta srl

CSUH.OB, Celsius Holdings:
Still risky, but still loaded with potential rewards.

The story of the worlds first calorie burning beverage continues, as the stock price slipped to .025 cents and the new radio commercial began playing in select areas around the country.

I could not help myself yesterday and bought a large chunk of stock at 0.025 cents that I believe will now complete my position in Celsius.

The risk of this company closing shop is always there, but the management team has been consistent in building the company very methodically, and with Carl DeSantis now on board, there's too much at stake for them to consider giving up at this point.

It's frustrating for the average investor to watch the share price continue to decline, but good things could be just a few months away as Celsius launches some TV ads during the post-election timeframe.

Now fully loaded, I'm ready to sit back, wait, and let the solid management team do their thing.

Although probably surprising to some, VFC has lots of patience, and in my opinion, patience will be rewarded with CSUH.OB.

- The company cannot sustain operations through the next few quarters before revenues significantly grow.

- Steve Haley, DeSantis and Co. continue to gradually grow the company and sales are given a significant boost as a result of the upcoming advertising campaign. Orders and reorders come rolling in and investors are pleasantly rewarded.

The next few quarters are in, but the advertising has started with a radio ad being played in select markets. Targeted TV ads after the elections are they key, in my opinion.

Originally in with a five year plan, I'll evaluate my holdings about six months from now.

CELSIUS comes in a case or in a 4-pack

Hughes Network Broadband

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

VFC's Bear Market Picks and Non-Picks Part IV; GM, F, NTII

First, the NOT picks-

Over the weekend, I received an email from a friend, and a reader of VFC's Stock House, who raised the question as to why I did not have any of the automakers (specifically Ford (F) and General Motors (GM) on my list of good Bear Market Picks.

VFC's Bear Market Picks
VFC's Bear Market Picks Part II
VFC's Bear Market Picks Part III

Ford and GM have been hammered of late, and GM is trading at it's lowest level since the 1950s. While looking for great value in this Bear Market, GM and Ford initially look like good risk-reward stocks to buy into, due to the historically low prices.

In my opinion, the reward potential for GM and F does not outweigh the risk. These stocks are down for reasons more than just bad market conditions. In a general market rebound, these stocks could rebound in price and dish out some nice, short-term rewards, but in this Bear Market, there are many other undervalued stocks out there that can pay rewards while holding less risk for the small investor.

For the long-term, the potential of a rebound is definately there, but I don't think we are going to see a major auto industry rebound anytime soon. Not only do the American automakers have to battle dwindling car sales and a bad economy, but they are in a position where they need to seriously revamp the industry. Big, gas guzzling vehicles are out and new, cheaper economy cars are in. The problem for GM and Ford, is that the rest of the world already drives cheaper, more economic vehicles and foreign automakers are already entrenched in the economy-car market. US automakers are already behind the curve.

In my opinion, what's happening to the auto industry is similar to what happened to the comic book industry years ago, when Marvel Comics (MVL) filed for Bankruptcy as a result of the 'Comic Book Crash'. As comics gained in popularity and demand, DC and Marvel Comics flooded the market with more and more comic books until they reached saturation point. Consumers had been buying two or three copies of each issue (believing they could be held as collectibles and re-sold later) and the Comic Book publishers just pumped out more and more comic books. Once the consumer quit buying comics on the level they once did, the result was a disaster for the industry. All over the country, small Comic shops went out of business and Marvel Comics went Bankrupt.

I can't help thinking the same thing has happened to the auto industry. I drive past dealership after dealership and see literally hundreds of last year's model trucks and larger cars still on the lot.

Granted, there are some differences in the above analogy (comics were bought as an investment at the time), but the point to take away is that Gas Guzzlers have saturated the market for so long that the demand is just not there anymore. With the current credit squeeze, consumers are not receiving the loans that they need to purchase these vehicles as easily as they have in the past. Even when the credit squeeze begins to lift, consumers will think twice about purchasing the expensive gas guzzler, and look for smaller, cheaper alternatives instead.

These two stocks have been battered for good reason; slumping sales, a slumping economy and most importantly, the threat of Bankruptcy. General Motors recently stated that Bankruptcy is not an option that the company is considering, but it's one that the small investor needs to consider. We, as small investors, get NOTHING out of a company that goes Bankrupt. While assets and other material properties are divvied up to debtors and large investors, the little guy gets nothing. The CEO is always going to say that Bankruptcy is not an option, just like Barney Frank said Fannie and Freddy looked good moving forward, but just the word 'Bankruptcy' in a sentance should raise the eyebrows of the small investor and tell them to stear clear, especially in a market like this where there are so many good, and safer, bargains out there.

I do invest in companies that have the potential threat of Bankruptcy on their head, such as Celsius Holdings, (CSUH.OB). The difference is, in the case of that stock, the risk-reward is huge because the shares are below a dime and the company's management has been building a solid business. The risk is minimal because the risk of losing large amounts of money is minimal with the stock trading so low, and the reward is huge, because the product is new and sales could take off with a proper advertising campaign.

The only near-term news that I see with Ford and GM that could cause a spike in price is news of a partnership or a merger. However, I never recommend investing in stocks SOLEY in hopes of a partnership or a merger. There needs to be more to a stock than just that potential news. A bailout for the auto industry, which is almost a given at this point, is something else that could move the stock price, but that news does nothing to boost my confidence about the future of the industry, in fact, it does more to drive me away from these stocks.

There you have it. I'm not a fan of the automobile stocks right now, just like I was not a fan of the airline stocks after that industry's big crash. There's too much out there right now in the form of bargains to waste time with the auto industry.

- Slumping auto sales and slow economy force one, or both of these companies into Bankruptcy.
- An extended economic slump keeps the auto industry barely treading water for years to come.
- Plans and visions of cheaper, economic and fuel efficient cars do not pan out as quickly as planned.

- American auto makers are able to carry out their plans for the future in quick fashion.
- A Government bailout keeps the industry afloat until a rebounding economy and lower gas prices revive the industry sooner than expected.
Agile Reporting, Inc

A WARNING, But One That Might Be Worth It-

NTII, Neurobiological Technologies, Inc.-
NTII is receiving quite a bit of buzz over the last couple of days, even making the Yahoo! Finance front page, due to a press release that state that the company has received permission from the FDA to combine results from two trial in order to receive results quicker than they had originally planned. As a result of this news, the stock has doubled over the course of the last two days.

Neurobiological Technologies is currently conducting Phase III trials on it's potential drug, Viprinex, that treats acute ischemic stroke. Viprinex is made using he venom from Viper snakes and the company has a site in Germany where they raise the Vipers.

I had invested in this company about two years ago after reading about the potential of Vipinex in the market of stroke treatment. I bought in at about two dollars in anticipation of a Phase III update on the Viprinex trials, then sold half of my position when the stock reached nearly three dollars for the sake of securing profit. I then sold the rest of my shares as the stock plummetted down to near a dollar. The stock continued to decline to under a buck, where it trades today.
The caveat, however, is that NTII went through a reverse split and still dropped to below a buck.

I've followed the stock since that time, waiting for a reason to get back in, but I lost more and more confidence in the stock as expected information was delayed and the share price plummetted. In VFC's opinion, confidence in a successful trial was fading along with the share price.

The recent news has re-gained my interest in NTII, but I am still hesitant to commit because of the stock's history, but I am somewhat intrigued by the potential of Viprinex. I'm wary that this latest move may be an act of desperation by the company because of their dire financial situation, similar to the shady activity by Accentia before they were due to release Phase III results for subsidiary Biovest's BiovaxID.

Abbreviated results of about 500 patients will now be released in January, with full results later in the year. NTII also has early-stage development programs for Alzheimer's and Huntington's diseases, and an investigational drug in Phase 3 trials for brain swelling, so there may be hope if Viprinex fails.

I'll watch the trading, and I may jump in if the stock trades down close to fifty cents, but I'm not sure this news is worth the buzz that it produced.

If you get into NTII now, it's strictly a Viprinex play.

- Viprinex fails, company is forced to raise additional capital and stock plummetts.

- Viprinex Phase III trial reports successful results and the stock price rises.
- Viprinex subsequently gains FDA approval.

News, one way or the other, will start to be released in January.

The Wine Messenger

Monday, October 13, 2008

The Dow Rises 900 Points, Historic Gains Were There For Those That Bought Low

Days like today is why it's so important for the little guy to be in the market before a run happens. Those that have sold out of fear, or because Jim Cramer told them to, were sitting on the sidelines today, and probably ended up chasing the run as they tried to get back.

I'd been a fan of Jim Cramer before, his books had a lot to do with getting me started in stock trading as a little guy, but I thought he was going insane when he instructed people to sell on his Today show appearance. For those that needed to pull money out just to survive, that's fine, but I get the impression that Jim gave up because he couldn't figure out what was going on. Unfortunately, those that followed Jim Cramer's advice, lost out big time today.

Today's run was unexpected in magnitude only, but a significant run like this one was due. Too many stocks were oversold and too much money was doing nothing on the sidelines. Today was an indication of what happens when big money decides to re-enter the market, much like the last hour of trading on Friday demonstrated.

Here's to hoping that we get some profit taking tomorrow and the market drops, only because I've got a lot of orders set to trade tomorrow.

Today's run should go a long way to bringing back investor confidence because there is still life in the US Markets, no matter how much the politicians and Jim Cramer try to scare us. I get the impression that there were a whole lot of politicians out there today that were actually disappointed in this mini-recovery, for their own political reasons.

Regardless of bailout packages and Politicians that have worked overtime to scare the heck out of the American investor, I believe much of the downward pressure lately had just as much to do with short selling as it did with a slumping economy. The last our of trading on Friday and the whole day today may indicate that those short sellers believe we are at a bottom and they covered in historic fashion, causing the market to rise, and rise, and nearly break the 1000 point up barrier. The short covering was also fueled by big money rolling back into the market looking to steal up bargains. The way the little guy makes money in these market is by being in before a run like this, and to do that, you've got to have the fortitude to hold tight in the bad times, and BUY when you think it makes more sense to SELL. On a sidenote, I emphasize, don't just buy anything, buy more of what you own or only those stocks on which you've done your DD.

We'll still experience volatility in the market, this is not a full recovery yet, so take advantage of any dips to continue the bargain hunting.
VFC's Bear Market Picks
VFC's Bear Market Picks Part II
VFC's Bear Market Picks Part III

For the sake of my buy orders, I'm hoping we get a nice dose of profit taking and fresh shorting tomorrow.

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Thursday, October 9, 2008

This Market is Killing Any Good News, But Epicept (EPCT) Just Released Some

Another huge loss for the stock market today covered up some excellent news for shareholders of Epicept(EPCT), and more importantly, for European patients suffering with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) in first remission.

We've been waiting on news from the European Commission to grant a full market authorization for Epicept's Ceplene to treat Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) in first remission, and today, after a long and volatile trip for Ceplene, the European Commission granted the full authorization.

Epicept is now free to market Ceplene in thirty countries (All EU countries plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway). In a normal market, EPCT would probably have doubled on this news, but on another huge down day in a bear market, this news was good for a 30% gain, and closed only 10% up. Still not bad, considering Epicept's stock price has tripled in the last few months, but not the gains that were expected on this news.

There good thing for us about the lack of a significant price increase on today's news, is that we can continue to accumulate shares of EPCT at under a dollar, a steal of a deal, but who knows how long the bargain will last. Ceplene is now an approved therapy with Orphan Drug Status in Europe (giving Epicept 10 years of market exclusivity) and it is expected to launch in Europe in the first quarter of 2009, according to today's Press Release. It's only a matter of time before Ceplene starts making money, and once this market straightens out a bit, the EPCT stock price will reflect the news that we got today. Consider any shares you get at this price, or below this price, a bargain.

Estimates are that Ceplene will pull in approximately $200 million a year, a number which Epicept's 55 million dollar Market Cap does not reflect. More good news may be on the way in the form of an announcement of a marketing partner in Europe. Jack Talley, President and CEO of EpiCept stated that there have been ongoing discussions with several potential unnamed commercial partners regarding Ceplene.

One condition of Ceplene approval- Epicept will conduct two additional clinical trials with Ceplene.

According to today's Press Release, Talley also expects to begin the process of looking for Ceplene approval in Canada and the USA.

Another factor that makes EPCT an attractive stock right now, is the fact that the company has five other drugs in the pipeline, most notably Azixa, a treatment for metastatic brain cancer which Epicept partnered with Myriad. At one point EPCT doubled on a positive update from the ongoing Azixa trial.

There are no sure things in the stock market, especially not in this market, but with the Ceplene marketing authorization granted, it should only be a matter of time before EPCT starts a nice uptrend. I'll be taking full advantage of cheap EPCT shares, especially if this stock remains under a buck.

Even in a terrible market, there are hidden gems out there, and EPCT is one of those.
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Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Norstrom (JWN), Down but not Out!

I've had Nordstrom (JWN) on my watch list for over a year now, but I've never pulled the trigger on a BUY order. The reason being, I started watching the stock at it's high (I hate buying stocks at their 52-week high unless there is an outstanding reason why it's expected to go higher: new drug, new product, etc.), and secondly because the economy was slipping. High-end retailers always get hit hard in slow economies as people look for cheaper alternatives to their more expensive luxury items.

When JWN dropped to the high twenties, I was tempted to pull the trigger and BUY then, but the economy kept going south, so I waited.

Now, for VFC, It's almost time to start pulling the trigger on the incremental buys.

Nordstrom is a high end retailer, so it's expected that they'll get hit a little bit harder than the regular retailers in a time of financial crisis. People aren't as apt to spend their money on twenty dollar shaving cream, four hundred dollar pair of shoes, five hundred dollar leather coat or the expensive make-up, as they would during the good times. On the other hand, people with money who aren't as effected by slow economies will always shop at Nordstrom, and their top variety of luxury items in jewelery, apparel, shoes and cosmetics will always keep people coming into the store.

The Nordstrom stock's 52-week high is just under fifty bucks, and currently it's sitting at it's 52-week low, trading at just over the twenty dollar mark. The company has reported a decline in sales (no surprise), which turns into less earnings per share (falling below analyst expectations), which leads to a sharp decline in stock price (again, no surprise). With no end in sight to this economic downturn, I expect to see JWN trading in the teens in the not so distant future.
Nordstrom is down because of a slow economy, not because of any bad business plans or bad news (aside from slowing sales). For that reason, JWN is a great bargain right now and my confidence is there that Nordstrom will rebound nicely when the economy rebounds. I plan on being there for the ride!

Nordstrom will report 3rd Quarter earnings on November 13th. The company has already significantly lowered their guidance and it looks to be a dim Holiday season for high-end retailers, giving the little guys like VFC ample time to accumulate shares of JWN at discounted prices. I'm confident that these shares will reward us when the economy bounces back.

I like the buying price at twenty dollars, but I love the prospect of a drop into the mid teens.

VFC will now BUY JWN and add on any drops lower. The lower it drops, the more I'll add.

Designer Linens Outlet

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

AT&T (T), A VFC Down Market Pick

A stock that's down along with the market that I think is a good buy at the current price is AT&T (T).

The AT&T stock (T) is trading at it's 52-week low, actually a two-year low, and in VFC's opinion, this is a result of the market meltdown and not an indication of a failing AT&T company. The telecom sector is getting hammered, along with the rest of the market in this credit crunch, and times like this mean it's time to bargain shop. VFC believes that T should be on the target shopping list.

Based on fear, often times fear that is instilled into the public by politicians with political motives, many investors are selling into this down market. When they sell into the down market, most likely they've sold at a loss, and that's not a winning proposition. Someone else is buying those shares at the discounted price, and the buyer buying shares will be rewarded when the market picks up again. The guy that sold into the downturn will be sitting on the sidelines.

If you already own T, I'd be averaging down right about now. I hadn't owned any T stock before, but I'll be buying now in these market condiditions. AT&T is not going anywhere as a company, and it will still be there to reward patient shareholders when the market turns around.

Don't sell into the down market, BUY into the downmarket, average down on now-undervalued stocks such as T, and reap the rewards when the market picks up again.

Heart Detectives micro button orange grey

Monday, October 6, 2008

Don't Sweat the Market Meltdown; Hold Tight and BUY!

The worst thing that an investor can do right now is sell into this down market.

The retirement account looks like it's dwindling away and the stock investing account account is flooded with red day after day. It's not a pretty sight. As ugly as it looks, we all just need to hold tight, and if there's any extra cash sitting around, now's the time to invest it.

In a down market, VFC says BUY.

For most, to invest now is going against a natural instinct. The fight or flight response says, if it looks scary - run. Unfortunately, that is contrary to making a buck in today's market conditions. To sell out now would mean, most likely, that you're selling for a loss. That's not a good strategy right now. Don't get me wrong, there are times to take your loss and move on, and there's plenty of stocks that you should run away from, but for the most part, now is the time to be strong, fight your emotions and BUY.
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Before you've bought a stock, you've done your research. You've come up with reasons as to why you've bought that stock, and you've developed a plan as to how long you'll hold that stock.

On VFC's Stock House, I like to outline the reasons why I buy a certain stock. For instance, my reasons for buying Dendreon (DNDN) were my confidence in the effectiveness of Provenge, and the fact that I believe that this new wave of cancer vaccines is the next step in cancer treatment. When I bought DNDN call options along with some DNDN stock almost two years ago, my plan was to hold until May when the FDA was to decide Provenge's fate with an approval decision. A risky proposition, DNDN was, because if Provenge failed, I would likely lose my entire investment. So I risked a small bit of capital because reports indicated that Provenge was safe and somewhat effective. I decided to take the risk. That was my time plan - wait for an FDA decision, but I also decided if there was a sharp move upward for any reason, I'd take some profit and run while I could. When the stock jumped into the twenties after an FDA Advisory Committee vote in March recommended approval, my monetary sell point (profit) was reached and I sold without thinking twice. I left a few shares out there to wait out the FDA's decision, and I held onto them, and added to that position after the FDA issued an approvable letter and the stock sank. The point is, one sell point in my plan was met- a surprising upward swing gave me nice profit to sell. On the other hand, due to the fact that I made a profit, the stock that I had left was 'House Money', so I decided to hold onto those shares, and add to the position to wait out the interim results (that were released today) that could lead to Provenge approval. After today's results, I've decided to hold onto those shares longer still, and add even more, because I am encouraged by the prospects of Provenge. That's the anatomy of a stock trading cycle in VFC's House.

Most of the trades I've made a profit on, I did not sell at the high, because when we're buying and selling, we never know what a high and a low is going to be. Because we can't predict an actual high and a low, we need to set our own BUY and SELL points, based on our own research. This is important. Never get too greedy on the way up, and never get too scared on the way down. Right now we're on our way down. My strategy is to buy a little at a time right now and 'Average Down', because I'm not sure where the bottom will be. The more averaging down you do, however, the more profit you'll make on the way back up.

A down stock I like right now is AT&T (T). The AT&T stock is trading at it's 52-week low right now, and in my opinion, it's a great time to buy it. AT&T is not going anywhere, their fundamentals are basically strong and the business plan is solid. The telecom sector is getting killed in the down market, and T is following the market down, it is not a collapsing as a company. Consumers don't have the spare money to spend on the nifty AT&T products right now, but you can bet that when the economy begins to turn around, AT&T will still be there. You can also bet that VFC is buying T in the low twenties, and will be gobbling shares if it hits the teens. If you're already an owner of AT&T, I could understand if you sold some shares in the forties for a profit (VFC never argues with profit), but if you held all the way down, now is the time to HOLD those shares and BUY more if you can afford it. Remember, a loss is only a loss when you sell. The key is, don't let the market scare you.

Many stocks are getting shaken out right now, that's part of the reason that the market is so volatile (the market was down 800 points today before recovering to being down less than 400). Stocks are getting dropped down and weak hands are selling while the big boys are scooping up the cheap shares that they 'shook' from the weak hands. The only ones who lose in that scenario are the weak hands that sold. The big boys have lost millions in this crisis, and they want to make their money back. One way to do that is by scooping up shares in undervalued companies so that they can recoup losses when the stocks rebound.

The key to your stock investments right now, and should always be, is to stick to your plan. Don't let fear and emotion dictate your trading patterns, you'll get burned every time; that also goes for holding onto a stock too long after a spike.

When it comes to investing in ETFs, Mutual Funds and Retirement Plans, now is the time to BUY. I don't invest in mutual funds because i don't like the hidden fees, low rate of return as compared to stocks, and I don't believe in paying someone to do something that I can do for myself. But if I was ever going to reccommend investing in mutual funds, it would be now while the market is down and you could make some steady gains when the market rebounds.
Zecco Holdings
This also goes for your retirement plans that are invested in funds. I actually quit contributing into my retirement account (into my employer sponsored plan, I still run one for myself) when the market was above 12,000 because I expected a correction at some point. Now that the market has crashed, I'm putting money into that plan again because the percentage of return will be significant from these levels, but it would have taken the market going all the way back up to 12,000 again before I would start making a profit if I put lots of money in up there.

ETFs, or Electronically Traded Funds, are funds that trade like stocks on the regular exchanges. In an up market I generally won't touch those, but I have bought into a couple of them now that the market is down because they'll rebound nicely when the market rebounds.

If stocks aren't your game, researching and investing in ETFs are a nice alternative. You get the excitement of the stock world and the stability of the fund world. Remember, do your research on an ETF just like you would on a stock. ETFs have become wildly popular and there are only a few out there that will beat the market, much like mutual funds, so take the time to find the right one for you.

The key is to not get rattled by the market.

Don't sell into this down market unless the business behind your stock has collapsed or you absolutely need the money. Surviving takes priority over investing, so if you have to sell to survive, then sell, but if you can afford to survive AND invest, you'll be heavily rewarded when the market rebounds.

Again, VFC says BUY in a down market!

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Dendreon's Interim Results are Out, and in VFC's Opinion, They Look Good; DNDN

The much awaited interim results from the ongoing IMPACT trial conducted by Dendreon (DNDN) to evaluate the effectiveness of Provenge for the treatment of advanced prostate cancer were released this morning.

The results demonstrated that patients who received Provenge were 20% less likely to die than patients who did not receive Provenge, missing the main endpoint of 22%, but offering promise that the 22% mark will be reached by the time the trial is concluded in 2009. In short- the evidence is still there that Provenge works.

The FDA had previously indicated that they would approve Provenge based on positive interim results, but it's not probably that the FDA will consider these results positive enough to re-consider approval. Patient advocate groups such as Care to Live and others will most likely lobby to have Provenge approved based on these interim results, and the Provenge story continues.

In VFC's opinion, these results are hugely successful, because at the interim, indications are that the survivability endpoints are definitely within reach.

Once again Provenge was proven as completely safe, and this factor alone gives Provenge a leg up in the approval process, and gives credence to those that are fighting to make Provenge available for prostate cancer patients who have no other alternative than Taxatore and it's significant side effects.

Yesterday, in preparation for release of interim results, I discussed two possible scenarios for the DNDN stock based on positive and negative results. The scenario that I did not discuss is the scenario that actually happened- the interim results were not a clear-cut success, but were also far from failure. The results are close enough to indicate that overall success for the trial is well within reach, and that is partly why Dendreon's stock has risen as high as 90% on a day when the market has crashed to under 10,000.

Aside from the encouraging interim results, today's spike is likely the result of massive short covering, with over 30 million shares traded during today's session (1.4 million is average volume). No one on 'The Street' had given any credence to the possibility of positive results a chance, and the results were a lot better than these analysts expected, positive enough to provoke the shorts to cover.

Analysts and shorts were both disappointed after last year's Advisory Committee vote, and I believe these same analysts and short sellers were disappointed this morning.

In light of this morning's spike, I was able to sell some shares in the high eight dollar range, but I will buy back in on any and every dip until this saga is concluded; hopefully upon approval of Provenge.

A very brief history of the Provenge Story:

Provenge is Dendreon's immunotherapy treatment to treat Prostate Cancer. Immunotherapy cancer treatments are the next phase of cancer treatment, although none have been approved in the US, and only one (Oncophage in Russia) has been approved elsewhere. Read about cancer immunotherapy treatments HERE.

Last Spring, the FDA issued an approvable letter to Dendreon (DNDN) regarding Provenge, even after the FDA's own Advisory Panel voted 17-0 that Provenge was safe and 13-4 that is was effective. The DNDN stock responded to the Advisory Committee's decision by rocketing from the four dollar range into the high twenty dollar range.
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A little less than two months later, the FDA issued an approvable letter for Provenge, in large part because two of the Doctors who served on the Advisory Committee lobbied hard to the FDA to NOT approve Provenge. It turns out that Dr. Howard Scher, and another Doctor, had significant financial links to companies that were in competition with Dendreon, and these conflicts of interest were not fully disclosed to the FDA before taking part in the Advisory Committee's votes.

When the FDA issued the approvable letter, DNDN tanked to the three and four dollar level and prostate cancer patients, who had their hopes of an alternative treatment to Taxatore, were crushed.

After much lobbying by prostate cancer patients and investor groups, the FDA agreed to approve Provenge based on positive interim survivability data from the results of the ongoing IMPACT trial.

Fast Forward to Now:
This morning has re-enforced my confidence that Provenge works and that patient and investor will ultimately be rewarded.

In light of the results, many shorts will be covering because Provenge has a good chance of success. Many of the naked shorts that have come under fire of late will also be looking to cover. It wouldn't surprise me to think that many of the naked shorts held on as long as possible in hopes that these interim results would show failure so that the stock would drop and these guys could cover lower.

Another factor to consider is the renewed possibility of a buyout. The interim results once again indicated that Provenge works, which could attract the interest of buyers, although Dendreon executives have been resistant to talk of a buyout in the past. If buyout rumors pop up, look for a significant increase in share price, as Provenge won't come cheap.

VFC's strategy from here will be accumulating DNDN until approval. With the shorts covering as they did during today's trading sessions, it's time to go long. Any dips will trigger VFC buys.

Again, most importantly, today prostate cancer patients are one step closer to having access to a possible life-saving immunotherapy.

Paradysz Matera

Sunday, October 5, 2008

D-Day for Dendreon (DNDN), Interim Results Due

The long wait for interim results from Dendreon's Phase III IMPACT trial for it's leading prostate cancer treatment, Provenge, is due at any time. This information is a long time coming, and if positive, the FDA has indicated that they will approve Provenge based on these results.

A very brief history of the Provenge Story:

Provenge is Dendreon's immunotherapy treatment to treat Prostate Cancer. Immunotherapy cancer treatments are the next phase of cancer treatment, although none have been approved in the US, and only one (Oncophage in Russia) has been approved elsewhere. Read about cancer immunotherapy treatments HERE.

Last Spring, the FDA issued an approvable letter to Dendreon (DNDN) regarding Provenge, even after the FDA's own Advisory Panel voted 17-0 that Provenge was safe and 13-4 that is was effective. The DNDN stock responded to the Advisory Committee's decision by rocketing from the four dollar range into the high twenty dollar range.

A little less than two months later, the FDA issued an approvable letter for Provenge, in large part because two of the Doctors who served on the Advisory Committee lobbied hard to the FDA to NOT approve Provenge. It turns out that Dr. Howard Scher, and another Doctor, had significant financial links to companies that were in competition with Dendreon, and these conflicts of interest were not fully disclosed to the FDA before taking part in the Advisory Committee's votes.

When the FDA issued the approvable letter, DNDN tanked to the three and four dollar level and prostate cancer patients, who had their hopes of an alternative treatment to Taxatore, were crushed.

After much lobbying by prostate cancer patients and investor groups, the FDA agreed to approve Provenge based on positive interim survivability data from the results of the ongoing IMPACT trial.

Flash forward to present time- these interim results are due any day.
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Based solely on the fact that no analyst out there predicts positive interim results, chances for positive results look slim. In my opinion, most of the analysts out there are only serving there own interests, not ours, and I usually pay little interest to what the analysts have to say. Those guys are paid by the big boys to help the big boys. None of the analysts predicted a positive vote from the Advisory Committee either.

However, the company itself has stated that the chances of Provenge proving survivability this soon in the trial are not as good as the chances of proving the survivability at the conclusion of the trial. The reality is, patients and investors may have to wait at least another year before getting a final answer on Provenge.

On the other hand, there is evidence that Provenge works, the Advisory Panel themselves voted 13-4 that it works, and therefore there is a chance that these interim results will bear good news. If the results are positive enough to prompt the FDA to consider approval, prostate cancer patients around America will finally have an option, other than Taxatore and it's horrific side effects, to treat their cancer. And on a lesser note, investors will have something to celebrate, as well.

If these upcoming results are negative, DNDN will be slashed in price by up to 75%, in my opinion, but that would just be a buying opportunity to accumulate more shares and wait for the final results of the trial. If the interim results are positive, the stock will skyrocket up by at least ten bucks initially, but ultimately the gains will be a lot higher than that.

Dendreon has been a roller coaster ride, but one that can pay off huge for patients and investors.

All eyes have been glued to DNDN for a long time, and the next phase in this saga will unfold any day now.

For the sake of prostate cancer patients looking for an alternative, lets hope the interim results prove to be a success.



8x8, Inc.

Paradysz Matera

Friday, October 3, 2008

Don't Move or Buy/Sell a Home Without Help!

If you're moving locations or about to buy or sell a home, (awarded both the Yahoo Innovation Award and the Yahoo People's Choice Award) is one stop shopping for everything you'll need to ensure that your move is a successful one.

Moving can be an extrememly stressful event that involves time and research, especially if you're buying or selling home in the process. If you want to do it right, and at the lowest cost to you, is the perfect place to get a head start. You've got everything at your fingertips at this user friendly website, including mortgage quotes, removal quotes, a variety of service and utility quotes and the best part about it all is that the quotes are free! There is no step in the moving process left uncovered on their website, even differentiating between a single move and a family move.

Buying and selling a home is an involved process that the average person not involved in real estate does not fully understand. Too often people jump uninformed into a buy or sell of a property and it ends up costing them money that creates headaches and regrets. provides the buyer and seller complete checklists to ensure both parties don't miss a step. The free mortgage quotes give both parties an idea of what to expect before entering into the negotiation phase.

Aside from buying or selling a property, the simple fact that provides a comparison shopping service so that you'll know the most affordable prices for all services and utilities in your area at any given time! That alone is a money saver, because the little guy loses too much money every year simply because they have no time to comparison shop. does your comparison shopping for you!

In the spirit of VFC's Stock House, I'm always looking for ways to look out for the little guy, and web sites like make it easier for the little guy not to get the bad end of the deal. They offer calendars, tips and suggestions to ensure that when you take that next step in your life, you don't end up missing a step that will end up costing you money. That's looking out for the little guy!

Celsius (CSUH.OB) Trading for a Nickel, and Take Advantage of the New 'Burn Baby Burn!' Promotion

The Celsius stock, CSUH.OB is trading for a nickel right now, down along with the rest of the market.

For those new to the Celsius scene, Celsius is the world's first calorie burning beverage; burning approximately 100 calories per 12oz serving. The Celsius calorie-burning claims and the science behind those claims have been supported by four clinical studies. The product is supported by weight-loss guru Jorge Hane and by business investor and nutritional supplement pioneer Carl DeSantis. Celsius is offered in five carbonated flavors (Cola, Orange, Ginger Ale, Wild Berry and Lemon-Lime). Recently, Celsius also released two non-carbonated, Green Tea flavors (Rasberry Acai and Peach-Mango).


Celsius, still a speculative start-up company, has reported increased sales quarter over quarter but is still in a financial bind, although the above mentioned Carl Desantis has come on board to support the company with big bucks. His relationship with the company and his experience in this field is a huge boost to investor confidence, but with a lack of predictable revenue and an unknown amount of re-orders coming in, Celsius is a risky play. In VFC's opinion, it may be risky, but it's still a great play at these low prices.

I pulled the trigger on another five cent limit trade today. CSUH.OB is not a stock for the weak-hearted, but the rewards could be humongous if the stock ever took off. For the stock to take off, the company must sell the product, and as seen in
VFC's Interview with Celsius CEO Steve Haley, national advertising campaigns are in the works. Although expensive, TV and Radio advertising works; Word of mouth advertising only goes so far. People that try the product tend to love it, but not too many people know about Celsius.
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On the plus side for CSUH.OB, it could be a short term steal as well as a long term HOLD because every couple of months the big boys seem to run the stock up to about twenty cents. I've got myself a handful of trading shares that I use to sell at those peaks and buy back in at the five to ten cent range. That trading allows me to keep my long term investment on 'house money'. House money is when you're not playing out of pocket anymore; previous winnings pay for your current investment.

A spike to twenty cents from here would be a quadruple, but I'll take a double any day with my trading shares.

VFC loves the Celsius product and is confident about the stock. CSUH.OB can pay back huge rewards in the short term and the long term, but there is still risk. I've said it before and I'll say it again, I believe the next three quarters are do or die for the stock, if not the company. We need to see significant growth. Steve Haley, CEO of Celsius Holdings stated that it takes two or three quarters for many of the distribution contracts to materialize into money in the bank. If that's the case, then we should see the significant growth that the investor is looking for in the next few quarters.

Also keep in mind that investors are always more impatient than the company itself. The Celsius team is slowly building a business distribution network while battling the big boys such as Coke. Over the past year that I've followed the company, I've always been confident with the Board's ability to move forward with a plan and I've never had to wait too long for a representative of the company to get back to me when I've had questions.

The product is solid and the management team is solid and that's a recipe for success.

Read VFC's interview with Steve Haley, the CEO of Celsius Holdings for his comments on these issues.

Enjoy the product and enjoy CSUH.OB!


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