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10/30/2005
Friday Rallies, by Victor Niederhoffer

Talk about ruining a man's weekend. Here are recent Friday moves in the S&P futures:

Date   Move     Date  Move
 9/9     10     9/16     9
 9/23     1     9/30     3
10/07     3    10/14    12
10/21     4    10/28    17

During this period, the market moved from about 1250 to 1200, so without the Fridays, which went up a cumulative 60 points, the market would be at 1140.

One can only imagine the glee with which the weekly financial columnist starts out his Friday mornings with exuberance like that of Tom Sawyer impersonating a Mississippi steamboat -- and then, by the end of the day, deflation, despondency. "What happened? My good friends who are the sharpest investments minds I know, the ones that called the top in the 1990s --  they were expecting The Big One. How could a rally happen eight times in a row? Dash, the PPT! See if Bob is back from his tennis game for an update on what a reflex rally on a Friday on low volume really means, and if he's still playing, get Charlie off the racquetball court!"

One is reminded of the gentleman who smiles at a beautiful girl at the bar, and gets a smile in return, and then he breaks the ice. "Would you like to join me for a little...?" After being hit with a few karate chops, stomped, elbowed in the head and kicked in the groin, he gets up five minutes later and says, "I trust that some ### would be out of the question?"

An ironic aspect of this is that the person who told me the joke, the best comedian and joke teller I know, is one of the chronic financial columnist's best and most favored sources for bearish scenarios with a 4-in-10 probability. There must be a market connection or at least an ecological reason for this.

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