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Dow Jones Industrial Average Futures Retreat as Violence in Iraq Escalates

Crude oil is poised to rise for a fourth consecutive day

by 6/16/2014 8:17:32 AM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:DJI) is signaling a lower start this morning, amid reports that violence in Iraq escalated over the weekend. Conversely, oil futures are pointed higher ahead of the bell, with the commodity poised for a fourth straight day of gains.

Meanwhile, "This week may bring some excitement, as June options expiration rolls out, including the expiration of CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) options at Wednesday's close," said Schaeffer's Senior Options Strategist Tony Venosa, CMT. "Also on Wednesday, the Federal Open Market Committee's (FOMC) most recent interest-rate decision and economic forecast will be released, followed by Fed Chair Janet Yellen's press conference." In today's session, the economic calendar includes a pair of updates on manufacturing activity, as well as the NAHB housing market index.

Plus, our Trading Topic of the Week -- 5 Reasons to Dodge Directional Risk: Increase the odds of a winning trade. All other things being equal, a straddle is more likely to end up a winner than an at-the-money call or put -- the strategy boasts a 42% win rate, compared to roughly 34% for a directional play.

And now, on to the numbers...

Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P and Nasdaq futures

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:.DJI) are nearly 40 points below breakeven.

Market Statistics

The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 1,154,670 call contracts traded on Friday, compared to 645,157 put contracts. The resultant single-session put/call ratio rose to 0.56, while the 21-day moving average dipped to 0.55.

NYSE and Nasdaq summary

Volatility indices

From the Trading Floor

"Despite it being Friday the 13th, with a full moon overhead, the market's end-of-week action did not bring the excitement traders may have expected," continued Venosa. "Equities managed to stay quiet and range-bound for most of the day. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 Index (SPX) continued to have a difficult time clearing the 'half-century' level at 1,950 -- an area that should be closely monitored in the weeks ahead."

Currencies and Commodities

  • The U.S. dollar index is sitting just north of the flat line this morning, with the commodity lingering near 80.60.
  • Elsewhere, crude oil is continuing to gain ground amid growing violence in Iraq. At last check, the commodity was up 0.2% to $106.40 per barrel.
  • Gold futures are higher, as well, with the malleable metal tacking on 0.6% in pre-market trading to hover around $1,281.60 an ounce.
Currencies and commodities

Earnings and Economic Data

June's Empire State manufacturing survey and National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) housing market index are scheduled for today, along with May's industrial production report and Treasury International Capital (TIC) data for April. Meanwhile, there are no significant earnings reports scheduled.

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