9:50am (EST)

The Commerce Department’s reported first-quarter gross domestic product showed the economy contracted by 5.7% which was an improvement over the fourth-quarter’s decline of 6.3% As a result, futures we strong all morning as the Dow Jones futures were up 41 points before the bell, while the Nasdaq futures we up nearly 4 points just before the bell rang.

The big news swirling today is General Motors (GM, $1.08, down $0.04) which may file for bankruptcy as early as Monday. Nobody wants to confirm this just yet but those in the know said it is “probable” that the company would file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. It is not official, yet, because talks are ongoing with the U.S. and Canadian governments.

Geez, can you believe the mayhem we have witnessed over the last two years? I mean, how many big names companies have fallen by the wayside? Honestly, I have lost count.

Apple (AAPL, $134.67, down $0.40) and Research in Motion (RIMM, $80.38, up $0.08) have had super week’s as the smart phones wars heat up. Palm (PALM, $11.66, up $0.20) had a nice 9% jump yesterday and will launch its Pre on June 5th. The unique thing is that the Pre will be able to run Apple’s iTunes software and download music though third-party software.

There were some great option trades on these stocks this week and many of you saw triple digits returns if you got in early on Tuesday. I’m not sure how much gas is left in the tank but RIMM is acting like it wants to go to par ($100). If that were the case, then I can see Apple going to $200. However, I think they rest before hitting those levels…

The response for our new trading service has been overwhelming and I will be providing more details over the weekend. If you are interested send me an email in case we cap the number of subscriptions. If you have already sent me one, thanks, you are on the list. And one more favor. If you have had any success with any of the trades from the blog (especially you Dendreon heads) we are asking for testimonials. We won’t include your last name but we would like to share your stories. As I close, the Dow is unchanged 20 minutes into trading.

Rick Rouse
Rick@OptionsMentoring.com