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Dow Jones Industrial Average Pushes North Ahead of Holiday Weekend

New home sales are the sole economic data point due today

by 5/23/2014 8:10:20 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:DJI) is poised to continue its churn higher, with futures sitting modestly above breakeven ahead of the bell. Both the economic and earnings calendars are light in what's expected to be a low-volume session leading into the long holiday weekend, with markets closed on Monday in observance of Memorial Day. However, new home sales and last night's earnings results from Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) and Aeropostale Inc (NYSE:ARO) could garner some attention from traders.

Meanwhile, as Schaeffer's Senior Trading Analyst Bryan Sapp noted, "The rally persisted yesterday, with small-caps and technology continuing to lead. The S&P 500 Index (SPX) is sitting just a stone's throw away from 1,900 and its former all-time highs of 1,902. A break above there would likely lead to a big move higher." Small-caps and tech may remain in focus today, with futures on both the Russell 2000 Index (RUT) and Nasdaq Composite (COMP) in the green in pre-market trading.

Plus, our Trading Topic of the Week -- How to Get Started with Options: Understand that options expire. Buy-and-holders must remember: With options, the stock needs to move in your favor -- and the sooner, the better.

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 18 points above breakeven.

Market Statistics

The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 861,051 call contracts traded on Thursday, compared to 610,257 put contracts. The resultant single-session put/call ratio rose to 0.71, while the 21-day moving average fell to 0.64.

NYSE and Nasdaq summary

Volatility indices

From the Trading Floor

"The new American Association of Individual Investors (AAII) poll that surfaced yesterday showed continued lack of interest toward the rally," said Sapp. "In fact, the 'percent bulls' that participated actually declined from last week's reading, and the S&P 500 is less than 1% off its all-time highs. This is a good sign of more cash remaining on the sidelines."

Currencies and Commodities

  • The U.S. dollar index is 0.2% higher ahead of the bell to trade at 80.40.
  • Elsewhere, crude oil is on the mend, with black gold up 0.2% at $103.96 per barrel.
  • Gold, meanwhile, is looking to pare a portion of Thursday's gain, with the commodity down 0.2% at $1,292.30 an ounce.
Currencies and commodities

Earnings and Economic Data

Last month's new home sales reading will hit the Street today. The week's docket of earnings reports closes out with Foot Locker (FL).

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