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Harry Newton's In Search of The Perfect Investment Technology Investor. Harry Newton

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9:00 AM EDT, Monday, October 26, 2009: Market getting toppier and toppier. The VIX has moved more than 10% each of the last three days. That's rare, and a sign the VIX may be at a bottom. The "big" money has been flowing into only a few stocks- Apple, Google, Amazon, etc. while the rest of market struggles. This too is not a good sign. "So, odds for a decline short-term are pretty high. It's my gut talking," a market watched I trust told me this weekend. Look at recent trend in VIX (the volatilty index):

How to avoid swine flu. You get swine flu through your nostrils/mouth/throat/eyes. Tricks to avoid getting it:

1. Wash your hands with soap or an alcohol-based hand rub.

2. Don't touch any part of your face.

3. Gargle twice a day with warm salt water (use Listerine if you don't trust salt). H1N1 takes 2-3 days after initial infection in the throat/ nasal cavity to proliferate and show characteristic symptoms. Simple gargling prevents proliferation.

4. Cclean your nostrils at least once every day with warm salt water. Or blow you nose hard and swab both nostrils with cotton buds dipped in warm salt water.

5. Boost your natural immunity with foods rich in Vitamin C. Or get Vitamin C tablets with Zinc to boost absorption.

6. Drink lots of warm liquids (tea, coffee, etc). Drinking warm liquids has the same effect as gargling, but in the reverse direction. They wash off proliferating viruses from the throat into the stomach where they cannot survive.

For more information, check out the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Another car rental rip-off. We rented a Hertz car for six days in August. It came with an EZPass thingee for getting through tolls. I just got the bill -- $2.50 a day rental ($10 a week) for the thingee plus tolls. We had two tolls. They each were $2.50. But with the thingee, they were $7.50 each. It would have been a lot cheaper to simply pay the cash. I believe there's a way to turn the thing off...

Screwed up charts on Friday. I had the the same two. Here''s what I meant:As I wrote, If you chart it with daily movements, it looks like it's getting toppy.

If you chart it on a weekly basis, it looks like it has a long way to go. But don't trust this chart too much.

What you mustn't underestimate is how robust the earnings recovery has been. The recession may gone in history as having a major good points -- like waking many companies up -- forcing them to clean up their acts -- fire superfluous workers, drop prices, introduce new products, etc. The usual stuff that gets ignored when times are good.

Putting the 60% rally into some sort of perspective. Courtesy Contrary Investor. I don't know what this means, if anything.

Stock markets are up 60% plus. How does this rally stack up with previous ones? Here are some key criteria of what previous 60% rallies have looked like when analyzed across 10 different key economic dimensions :

+ Year over Year Retail Sales: 9.3% average in prior 60% rallies versus -5.3% in the current one

+ Consumer Confidence: 95.5 average; 53.1 now

+ Capacity Utilization: 79.9% average; 66.6% now

+ Year over Year Industrial Production: 4.1% average; -10.7% now

+ ISM: 53.9 average; 52.6 now

+ Payroll employment gains over period: 2.2% average; -2.0% now

+ Decline in continued unemployment claims from cycle peak: -26.3 average; -11.6% now

+ Year over Year growth in total credit market debt: 9.3% average; 3.0% now

+ Year over Year growth in household debt: 8.8% average; -0.1% now

+ P/E Multiple: 16.8x average; 20.0x now

What financial sites are worth visiting? Contrary Investor has a neat list, along with explanations of why they like the site, at something called Link Letter.

My recent three favorite books:

Tomorrow: How to clean your teeth. You do not want the pain I endured this weekend -- as a result of my own teeth idiocy.

This column is about my personal search for the perfect investment. I don't give investment advice. For that you have to be registered with regulatory authorities, which I am not. I am a reporter and an investor. I make my daily column -- Monday through Friday -- freely available for three reasons: Writing is good for sorting things out in my brain. Second, the column is research for a book I'm writing called "In Search of the Perfect Investment." Third, I encourage my readers to send me their ideas, concerns and experiences. That way we can all learn together. My email address is . You can't click on my email address. You have to re-type it . This protects me from software scanning the Internet for email addresses to spam. I have no role in choosing the Google ads on this site. Thus I cannot endorse, though some look interesting. If you click on a link, Google may send me money. Please note I'm not suggesting you do. That money, if there is any, may help pay Michael's business school tuition. Read more about Google AdSense, click here and here.