Stocks quoted in this article:
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 13,044.09) is up 92 points, or 0.7%, after President Barack Obama waxed optimistic on fiscal-cliff negotiations, and despite a drop in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares. Meanwhile, the Institute for Supply Management's (ISM) non-manufacturing index arrived at 54.7 in November, up from 54.2 in October. Economists, on average, had expected a decline to 53.5. Concurrently, the Labor Department reported that business productivity rose to a rate of 2.9% for the third quarter -- versus initial estimates of a 1.9% increase -- topping economists' projections for a climb of just 2.8%. Also of note, factory orders for October edged 0.8% higher, besting consensus estimates for a 0.1% decline. However, private-sector employers continue to feel the effects of Hurricane Sandy, according to the latest ADP data, as just 118,000 jobs were added last month, down from October's gain of 157,000. Elsewhere, the CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX - 16.52) is 0.6 point, or 3.5%, lower.
Here are a few noteworthy stats at midday:
- The equity put/call volume ratio across all 10 options exchanges stands at 0.73, with 3.9 million calls changing hands so far today, compared to 2.7 million puts.
- Among the equities with call-slanted activity is ACADIA Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:ACAD – 4.80), despite shedding about 4% today. Currently, calls represent 74.7% of the biotech concern's intraday option volume.
- The put/call volume ratio on the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN (NYSEARCA:VXX - 30.84) checks in at 1.00, with calls equaling puts.
- The Nasdaq shows an advance/decline ratio of 0.70, with the number of downward movers easily outpacing the advancers.
- Among the Nasdaq's major decliners is Tibco Software Inc. (NASDAQ:TIBX - 19.36), which has shed around 22% -- and tagged a new annual low of $18.95 -- in intraday action, thanks to downbeat guidance released after yesterday's close.
- Bullish sentiment increased last week, according to the latest Investors Intelligence survey. The percentage of financial advisors with a bullish view on stocks rose to 43.6% from 39.3%, while the percentage bearish fell to 25.5% from 27.7%. Meanwhile, the percentage of advisors expecting a market correction dropped to 30.9% from 33.0%.