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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:.DJI) is down 52 points, or 0.4%, to 14,495.75, after several lackluster quarterly earnings reports -- which included blue-chip component Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) -- hit the Street ahead of this morning's open. Meanwhile, the National Association of Realtors said existing home sales unexpectedly fell by 0.6% last month to a seasonally adjusted yearly rate of 4.92 million.
Here are a few noteworthy stats at midday:
- The equity put/call volume ratio across all 11 options exchanges stands at 0.93, with 3.0 million calls changing hands so far today, compared to 2.8 million puts.
- Among the equities with call-heavy activity is Saks Inc (NYSE:SKS), which has slipped 0.3% since the opening bell. Nevertheless, calls make up 95.8% of the department store's intraday option volume. At last check, SKS was trading at $11.10.
- The Nasdaq shows an advance/decline ratio of 0.55, with the number of downward movers almost doubling the advancers.
- Among the Nasdaq's major decliners is Angie's List Inc (NASDAQ:ANGI), which declined about 3.8% today, despite receiving some bullish brokerage attention in pre-market activity. Specifically, Stifel Nicolaus raised the stock's price target to $28 from $21, after the company announced it has topped the two million paid-households level. ANGI is presently trading at $19.96.
- The CBOE Market Volatility Index (INDEXCBOE:VIX) is 0.2 point, or 1.4%, higher, to explore the 15.18 region.
- The put/call volume ratio on the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN (NYSEARCA:VXX) -- currently hovering at 20.23 -- checks in at 1.13, with puts outweighing calls.
View a real-time chart of the Dow Jones Industrial Average 2 Minute (INDEXDJX:.DJI) here.