Stocks quoted in this article:
Lackluster earnings news is weighing on Wall Street once again, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 13,318.52) is down 25 points, or 0.2%. Specifically, Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) topped analysts' bottom-line quarterly earnings estimates but fell short of revenue expectations. Meanwhile, the construction equipment manufacturer also lowered its full-year guidance. Elsewhere, the CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX - 17.33) is 0.3 point, or 1.6%, higher.
Here are a few noteworthy stats at midday:
- The equity put/call volume ratio across all 10 options exchanges sits at 0.85, with 3.7 million calls crossing the tape so far today, versus 3.1 million puts.
- Among the equities with call-skewed activity is SUPERVALU INC. (NYSE:SVU - 2.85), which had soared about 30% today, amid escalating hopes for a potential buyout bid for the company. Currently, calls make up 58.1% of the grocery chain's intraday option volume.
- The put/call volume ratio on the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN (NYSEARCA:VXX - 35.07) stands at 0.83, with calls outnumbering puts.
- The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) shows an advance/decline ratio of 0.95, with the number of downward movers slightly outstripping the advancers.
- Among the NYSE's major decliners is Advance Auto Parts, Inc. (NYSE:AAP - 65.05), which has lost about 5% in intraday trading after forecasting weaker-than-expected third-quarter earnings and slashing its fiscal-year outlook. The news also sparked price-target cuts at Oppenheimer and Credit Suisse this morning.