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Hot Stock News for Options Traders

Dow Jones Industrial Average Jumps Ahead of Housing Data, FOMC Meeting

Gold is poised for a second straight day in the red

by 3/18/2014 8:05:16 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:

"Monday's sharp upside reversal for the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:.DJI) came ahead of Wednesday's Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) policy statement -- an event that typically has a positive bias in the days leading up to the meeting," noted Schaeffer's Senior Options Strategist Tony Venosa, CMT. The FOMC kicks off the two-day affair today, and in pre-market trading, futures on the 30-stock index are nearly 57 points higher.

Looking ahead, Venosa says to "Keep an eye on the housing sector, which has experienced a strong pullback during the past two weeks. There is plenty of housing data and earnings from some major homebuilders due out this week, which could put the focus back on this group during expiration week." Additionally, investors will be taking note of events unfolding overseas, after Russian President Vladimir Putin yesterday defied Western sanctions and formally recognized Crimea as an independent state. Putin is scheduled to address the State Duma this morning.

Plus, our Trading Topic of the Week -- How to Get Started with Options: Learn how options pricing works. Options pricing isn't rocket science, but it's not quite as straightforward as stocks (implied volatility, anyone?).

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 roughly 57 points above breakeven.

Market Statistics

The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 987,063 call contracts traded on Monday, compared to 560,258 put contracts -- the fewest thus far in 2014. The resultant single-session put/call ratio fell to 0.57, while the 21-day moving average remained at 0.59.

NYSE and Nasdaq summary

Volatility indices

Currencies and Commodities

  • The U.S. dollar index is flirting with a 0.1% lead ahead of the bell, with the currency lingering near 79.46.
  • Crude oil, meanwhile, is little changed in pre-market trading, with crude for April delivery last seen at $97.63 per barrel.
  • Elsewhere, gold futures are eyeing a second consecutive day of losses, with the front-month contract 0.8% lower at $1,362.30 an ounce.
Currencies and commodities

Earnings and Economic Data

The consumer price index (CPI) and core CPI, as well as housing starts and building permits, will hit the Street today. Meanwhile, the FOMC will kick off its two-day policy-setting meeting. Adobe Systems (ADBE), DSW (DSW), Oracle (ORCL), Pacific Sunwear (PSUN), Renren (RENN), and Yingli Green Energy (YGE) will step up to the earnings plate.

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