Scanning for supernovae

Yes you read that right. The plural of supernova is supernovae. I am obsessive about grammar. By the way, the plural of index is indices, not indexes. Anyway, supernovae are stocks that are up an insane amount, over 100% in a couple days; Tim Sykes originated the term. The supernova du jour is GGC, which I am now looking to short aggressively on the right price action (what do I mean by the right price action? Buy Sykes’ excellent DVD

I am a happy user of Here is the code I use to scan for supernovae.

show stocks where close gained more than 99 percent over the last 5 days
and price is between .25 and 15
average day range is above 8
and volume is greater than 500000

set{ DayChg1 , close – close 5 days ago }
set{ DayChg2 , DayChg1 / close 5 days ago }
Set{ 5DayPctGain, DayChg2 * 100}
add column 5DayPctGain
and sort column 5 descending
Set{5DaysAgoPrice, close 5 days ago}
and add column 5DaysAgoPrice

Looking for my watchlist? This is it. GGC is the stock I’ll be watching tomorrow. WUHN is also almost a supernova but I couldn’t find shares to short. AIG may be interesting, along with other finance plays, but I don’t like trading finance stocks. CMLS also on watch, more likely a good buy tomorrow than a short. I probably won’t play it.

Disclosure: No positions. I am a customer of, subscribing to their cheapest package. I have no other relationship with them. I have a disclosure policy.

15 thoughts on “Scanning for supernovae”

  1. Howdy sir. You said that you don’t like trading finance stocks. Is there any particular reason(s) why? I’m a beginner at this game so I’d be interested to read what you have to say about them. Thanks.

  2. Cool…I’ve got a similar filter that I use to find these types of short setups…..I like to look for stocks 80%+ off the 5-day low, and 15%+ above the upper bollinger band. Here’s my filter:

    set{fivedaylow, Low 5 day low}
    set{a1, Close / fivedaylow }
    set{a2, a1*100}
    set{percentincrease, a2 – 100}

    add column percentincrease

    set{b1, upper bollinger band(20,2)}
    set{b2, close / b1}
    set{b3, b2 * 100}
    set{percaboveubb, b3 – 100}

    percaboveubb greater than 14
    and volume above 100000
    and close above 0.5
    and percentincrease above 79

    add column percaboveubb

    sort by column 5 descending

  3. Yngvai – thanks! Of course there is no one ‘right’ scan; I have other scans I use to find potential shorts that aren’t true supernovae.

    Ross – As Tim Sykes likes to say, he makes money by trading stocks up on hype and manipulation. Finance stocks have plenty of smart traders (hedge funds) trading them. I like to trade against dumb individuals, not smart pro traders.

    Shawn – I don’t think CMLS is a good buy. But one big up day on huge volume is often followed by another. So odds favor that it goes up today.

  4. I have a funny feeling you killed GGC this morning.

    By the way your back to # 1 on the Fool, I know you don’t pay much attention to that anymore but I thought to let you know.

    My TYP has paid off but I’m still holding because I think more downside is to come, but I will not hold overnight.

    AIG has flew up.

  5. Hi Michael,
    Can you please explain your code logic? When I typed up this filter on stock fetcher to experiment it shows stocks with low volume. Please help me understand if am missing anything. Also, do I need to have a subscription to even experiment this code on their site?

  6. Hi Michael,
    Do you have the scan(supernovae) setup on Thinkorswim by any chance? I highly appreciate your help.

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