Stocks quoted in this article:
As Wall Street awaits today's conclusion of the Federal Open Market Committee's (FOMC) policy meeting, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 13,361.44) is up 28 points, or 0.2%. Meanwhile, the producer price index (PPI) notched its largest gain in more than three years last month, which may have tempered a higher-than-expected increase in weekly jobless claims. Elsewhere, the CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX - 15.79) is off 0.01 point, or 0.1%.
Here are a few noteworthy stats at midday:
- The equity put/call volume ratio across all 10 options exchanges checks in at 0.76, with 2.9 million calls being exchanged so far today, versus 2.2 million puts.
- Among the equities with call-skewed activity is Tyco International Ltd. (NYSE:TYC - 55.14), despite shedding 1.9% today after the company was downgraded to "equal weight" from "overweight" at Barclays in pre-market action. Currently, calls make up 67.3% of the security's intraday option volume.
- The put/call volume ratio on the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN (NYSEARCA:VXX - 9.55) stands at 0.52, with calls almost doubling puts.
- The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) shows an advance/decline ratio of 0.92, indicating that the number of downward-moving issues slightly outstrips the advancers.
- Among the NYSE's major decliners is NIKE, Inc. (NYSE:NKE - 99.04), which has lost about 1.8% in intraday trading after the athletic footwear designer was cut to "neutral" from "buy" at Citigroup this morning.
- Optimism spiked during the week ended Sept. 12, according to the latest survey by the American Association of Individual Investors (AAII). The percentage of investors with a bullish view on stocks rose to 36.5% from 33.1%, while the percentage bearish edged down to 33.0% from 33.1%. Meanwhile, the percentage neutral fell to 30.6% from 33.9%.