Stocks quoted in this article:
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:.DJI) has shed 91.5 points, or 0.6%, to 15,757.13, on continued concerns surrounding emerging markets. In economic news, personal spending in December outpaced the consensus forecast, while personal income fell short of estimates, and the fourth-quarter employment cost index rose slightly more than expected. Elsewhere, consumer sentiment arrived in line with economists' projections, while factory activity in the Chicago region declined for a third straight month. Lastly, as we wind down the final session of January, it's worth noting that no traditional indices are trading higher in 2014.
Here are a few noteworthy stats at midday:
- The equity put/call volume ratio across all 12 options exchanges checks in at 0.87, with calls outpacing puts. At last check, 4.58 million calls had crossed the tape, versus 4.01 million puts.
- Among the equities with notable call volume is Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. (NYSE:TMO), which is up slightly to trade at $115.15, after announcing a fourth-quarter earnings beat yesterday afternoon, and receiving price-target hikes this morning from Cantor Fitzgerald (to $136 from $128), Mizuho Financial (to $140 from $130), and Leerink Swann (to $130 from $107). At last check, 98.4% of TMO's options volume had changed hands on the call side.
- The Nasdaq shows an advance/decline ratio of 0.35, with declining equities nearly tripling advancers.
- One of the Nasdaq's noteworthy losers today is Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT), which has shed 9.6% to $38.91, after reporting worse-than-expected fourth-quarter profit and sales figures earlier.
- In the latest American Association of Individual Investors (AAII) survey, the proportion of bears picked up 9 percentage points during the last week to register at 32.8%, while the percentage of bulls dropped by nearly 6 percentage points to 32.2%. This is the first time since last August that bears have outnumbered bulls in this survey. In addition, the percentage of neutral investors dipped to 35.1% from 38.1%.
- The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) is 0.01 point, or 0.1%, higher at 17.30. In early trading, the market's "fear gauge" also matched Monday's high of 18.99, which hasn't been topped since last October.
- The put/call volume ratio on the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN (NYSEARCA:VXX) -- trading at $47.72 -- registers at 1.25, with put volume outweighing call volume by a 5-to-4 margin.
View a real-time chart of the Dow Jones Industrial Average 2 Minute (INDEXDJX:.DJI).