Turd Ferguson: Max Q

Max Q

Tuesday, September 27, 2011 at 7:00 pm

Whoever told you that trading and stacking precious metals “wasn’t rocket science” was lying. When watching the video below, be sure to note what happens at the 0:55 and 1:15 marks.

After a decline of epic and historic proportions, the PM charts tonight stand just below their points of Max Q. “Huh?”, you ask. From Wikipedia:

“In aerospace engineering, the maximum dynamic pressure, often referred to as maximum Q or max Q, is the point at which aerodynamic stress on a vehicle in atmospheric flight is maximized. There will always be a point where the dynamic pressure is maximum. That point is max Q.
In other words, below max Q, the effect of the vehicle acceleration overcomes the decrease in air density so as to create more dynamic pressure (opposing kinetic energy) acting on the craft. Above max Q, the opposite is true. The dynamic pressure acting against the craft decreases as the air density decreases, ultimately reaching 0 when the air density becomes zero.
During a normal Space Shuttle launch, for example, max Q occurred at an altitude of approximately 11 km (35,000 ft).[1] The three Space Shuttle main engines were throttled back to about 70% of their rated thrust as the dynamic pressure approached max Q;[2] combined with the unthrottled solid rocket boosters, this reduced the total thrust by about 5%.
During a typical Apollo mission, max Q occurred between 13 and 14 km of altitude (43,000–46,000 ft).[3][4]
The point of max Q is a key milestone during a rocket launch, as it is the point at which the airframe undergoes maximum mechanical stress.”

Got it? Me, neither. But that’s not the point. In our example here, the PMs have rallied from deeply oversold territory. This part of the flight (the liftoff) was easy. Just light the fire and watch it go. However, any rally after such a steep selloff is inevitably going to reach a critical point on the charts where the rally either reaches escape velocity and continues on OR the gravity of the selling pressure becomes too great to overcome and things head back down. This is area on the charts is our Max Q. This is our point of maximum dynamic pressure.

On the charts below, I’ve outlined the clear areas of Max Q. In gold, it’s 1670-1682 with a continuance of pressure all the way to 1705. In silver, it’s the area between 32.35 and 33.85.

paper_9-27pmgold.jpgpaper_9-27pmsilv.jpg

The thrill ride of the liftoff is over and the engines have been throttled back. We’ve reached the point of Max Q. Will we be able to clear Max Q? Will we hear the command “Go For Throttle Up” and continue the rally or will our mission end with a diversion to Diego Garcia? (Trust me. No one wants to be diverted to Diego Garcia.) We should have the answers to these questions very soon.

Here’s some extra stuff to help you pass the time while you wait. First up, Eric King interviewed John Embry of Sprott Asset Management late yesterday and the entire interview can be found through the link below. It’s brief but quite interesting. Equally interesting, in light if the beating it took today, is the intro ad for Santa’s stock.

http://www.kingworldnews.com/kingworldnews/Broadcast/Entries/2011/9/26_John_Embry.html

Next, Jeff Nielson has penned another interesting article:

http://www.bullionbullscanada.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=22271:precious-metals-vs-us-treasuries&catid=48:gold-commentary&Itemid=131

This “Silver Summit” sure looks like fun. I can’t attend but perhaps one of you would like to go and report back for all of us?

http://cambridgehouse.com/conference-details/the-silver-summit-2011/48

Lastly, the article below was brought to my attention this morning. I must admit that it is somewhat challenging to get your arms around but it is worth the time and effort to try. For me, the collapsing lease rates for gold are a clear and obvious signal of massive, direct Central Bank intervention in the gold markets. As the article states, without this intervention, gold would be in backwardation due to extremely high physical demand and, as you know, backwardation is a sure sign of an impending short squeeze. Of course, I could be wrong so I’m interested to hear everyone else’s interpretation.

http://ftalphaville.ft.com/blog/2011/09/14/677021/why-gold-forward-rate-inversion-is-important/

Also note that the article was written on 9/14, fully one week before the latest massive beatdown. Hmmm. It would sure seem that someone or something leased a boatload of gold at extremely cheap rates to overwhelm the market and set prices tumbling. Was Wednesday night into Monday morning just a continuation of the central bank intervention we first noticed three weeks ago after the SNB devaluation of the franc?

OK, that’s all for today. TF out.

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