“Cut-to-the-Chase” Recommendations
-- Week Beginning January 18, 2016 --

by Ian Harvey

IMPORTANT NOTE: There is no stop-loss or pre-determined sell price recommended – this is left to the discretion of the individual trader.

Thursday, January 21, 2016
Schlumberger Limited (NYSE:SLB) Puts

**OPTION TRADE: Buy the SLB Feb 2016 55.000 put (SLB160219P00055000) at approximately $1.15. Sell price is left to your own judgment.

Schlumberger Limited (NYSE: SLB), a provider of technology, integrated project management and information solutions to the international petroleum and gas exploration and production sector, is expected to report today, after trading closes, a steep fall in fourth-quarter profit as lower oil prices weigh on global drilling activity. The company had warned in October that it would incur a restructuring charge in the quarter due to additional job cuts. Schlumberger, whose comments are closely followed for a glimpse into industry trends, is expected to reiterate a sluggish forecast for North America.

The energy company is expected to report revenues of $7.79 billion, in the last quarter of 2015. If the estimate holds true, it will mean an 8% decline from the previous quarter, and 38% decline YoY.

Analysts project for adjusted net income to clock in at $805.48 million or $0.63 per share in 4QFY15, down from $989 million or $0.78 per share in 3QFY15. As the energy corporation recorded $1.94 billion in 4QFY14, the current estimation reflects a decline of more than 58%.

Schlumberger Limited. had its target price cut by Deutsche Bank from $86.00 to $79.00 in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday morning. They currently have a buy rating on the stock.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) Calls

**OPTION TRADE: Buy the AAPL Feb 2016 110.000 call (AAPL160219C00110000) at approximately $0.60. Sell price is left to your own judgment.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL), after a relatively flat performance for 2015, and then this year, with selling pressure, a fall through the $100 mark – a drop from the $134.54 experienced last year, provides a very favorably entry position for this option trade.

Reports that Apple is cutting iPhone production may mean that the company is preserving resources in preparation for the iPhone 7. And, Apple has many other new products to offer -- including its updated Apple TV, continued penetration of the Apple Watch, as well as rumored entries into televisions and the automotive industry.

There is also the massive growth potential of Apple Pay, particularly in China, where mobile payments are booming and Apple recently came to a deal with UnionPay, the main bank card and payment firm in China. Apple has announced it will expand Apple Pay into China in 2016, as early as February. E-commerce and digital payments are growing rapidly in China, right alongside the boom in smartphone usage there.

Plus, Apple is in great financial condition. The stock is cheap, trading at just 10 times earnings, with a 2% dividend yield. Apple also holds $83 billion in cash and short-term marketable securities, and another $164 billion in long-term investments on its balance sheet, with $53 billion in long-term debt.