Schaeffer's Trading Floor Blog
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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:

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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%.
Unusual Option Volume at Midday

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