Real-Time Market Insights
Hot Stock News for Options Traders
Stocks quoted in this article:

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:.DJI) is higher ahead of the bell, as the blue-chip barometer looks to build on last week's advance. In today's session, investors will be eyeing the flash purchasing managers index (PMI) for March, after similar readings released earlier in China and France arrived mixed. The data is due out at 9:45 a.m. ET. Among stocks to watch, Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) is up in pre-market trading, after the company approved three of Carl Icahn's board nominees.

Additionally, "Looking ahead to this week, earnings will be light, but the housing sector will continue to be in the spotlight as more housing data will be released," said Schaeffer's Senior Options Strategist Tony Venosa, CMT.

Plus, our Trading Topic of the Week -- Tips for Buying Weekly Options: Buyers should avoid sluggish stocks. Don't use weekly options to bet on a slowly trending blue chip -- you need a fast, aggressive move in the right direction.

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 more than 31 points above breakeven.

Market Statistics

The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 1,623,688 call contracts traded on Friday -- the most since Jan. 24 -- compared to 1,004,979 put contracts. The resultant single-session put/call ratio moved higher to 0.62, while the 21-day moving average rose to 0.59.

NYSE and Nasdaq summary

Volatility indices

From the Trading Floor

"After being up for most of the morning on Friday, markets experienced afternoon selling pressure," noted Venosa. "The iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (ETF) (NASDAQ:IBB) was a huge drag, closing down nearly 5%. After the dust settled, though, the S&P 500 Index (SPX) finished the volatile week up, adding nearly 1.4%."

Currencies and Commodities

  • The U.S. dollar index is up 0.2% in pre-market trading, with the currency last seen near 80.25.
  • Elsewhere, crude oil is looking to extend Friday's advance, with May-dated crude 0.5% higher at $99.91 per barrel.
  • Gold futures, meanwhile, are flirting with a 0.9% drop ahead of the bell, with the front-month contract hovering around $1,324.70 an ounce.
Currencies and commodities

Earnings and Economic Data

This month's preliminary reading of the PMI index is scheduled for today. ReneSola (SOL) and Sonic (SONC) will report earnings.

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