Weary investors in a wild stock market got a break today when ERHE - contrary to my very wrong prediction that it would end the week at $0.25 or below - drove the price back up 23% from $0,26 to $0.32 Ask and $0.311 Bid on volume of 831,376, as of this posting at 3:44 p.m. EST Friday. Buying outpaced sales by a margin greater than 3:1. Much of the early action came from a single purchaser who said he bought 154,000 shares at $0.27 or thereabouts in the first 15 or so trades of the day. There were 127 trades as of the close, when the Bid slipped to $0.305 but the Ask held steady at $0.32.
Of particular note was the resistance at $0.3299. First, what appeared to be related trades of 8,000 and 5,000 shares went off at $0.3299. In the five minutes between an 8,000-share purchase at 2:57 and and a 5,000-share buy at 3:02 p.m. EST, with no intervening trades, the Bid went from $0.32 $0.329, while the Ask went (one trade earlier) to $0.3299. Rather than hit $0.33 - the high purchase of the day - the $5,000 shares at 3:02 p.m. went off at $0.329 Bid and $0.3299 Ask. The Ask dropped to $0.329 five minutes later, and the bid dropped to $0.32. Rarely in the history of this stock has there been a gap of just 9/10,000ths (that ten-thousandths) of a cent.
However, six minutes later, at 3:14:17 p.m., with the Bid back at $0.32, the Ask bumped up to $0.33 for two trades just a second apart - a buy of 5,000 at $0.33 (the single trade at $0.33 for the day), a buy of 10,000 at $0.3299 at 3:14:18 p.m.- followed by a sale of 1,000 at $0.32 11 minutes later.
Someone seemed very determined to keep it from hitting $0.33. If that determination reasserts itself on Monday, we may see some slippage that should soon be offset by the naming of a new CEO.
Wrong, wrong, wrong! We need to see ERHE move beyond this range to persuade ourselves the worst is over for our minnow, but today's volatility is encouraging. Many posters have noted that they took advantage of the deep price discounts engendered by concern over possible indictments stemming from a joint SEC-FBI probe by a Houston Federal Grand Jury and by the sudden, unexpected departure of the company's longtime champion and chairman, Sir Emeka Offor.
There is little to do now but wait and hope for the best, but that investors are rethinking and stocking up would suggest better times are ahead before planned drilling starts in the third quarter of 2008.
Personally, I'm the big loser as I bet that the stock would go to $0.24 Bid and that I could load up around there. I am more reluctant to do so at these levels, although they are historically attractive going into the Fall months. I'll let you know if I increase my 15,000-share stake, acquired at an average of $0.30. At least I'm back in the black!