Schaeffer's Trading Floor Blog
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 14,004.54) is up 33 points, or 0.2%, as Wall Street awaits President Obama's State of the Union address, scheduled for 9:00 p.m. ET tonight. Also on tap later today is the Treasury Department's latest budget update. Meanwhile, the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) said its small business optimism index arrived at 88.9 in January, up from the previous month's reading of 88.0. Elsewhere, the CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX - 12.94) remains flat with yesterday's close.

Here are a few noteworthy stats at midday:

  1. The equity put/call volume ratio across all 11 options exchanges sits at 0.70, with 3.5 million calls crossing the tape so far today, versus 2.4 million puts.

  2. Among the equities with call-skewed activity is Fossil, Inc. (NASDAQ:FOSL - 112.86), which has gained around 5% during the course of the session. The accessories designer reported stronger-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings ahead of the opening bell. Currently, calls represent 58.3% of FOSL's intraday option volume.

  3. The put/call volume ratio on the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN (NYSEARCA:VXX - 22.56) checks in at 2.13, with puts more than doubling calls.

  4. The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) shows an advance/decline ratio of 1.65, with the number of upward movers easily outstripping the decliners.

  5. Among the NYSE's major advancers is Avon Products, Inc. (NYSE:AVP - 20.55), which has soared almost 19% in intraday action. The beauty products maven reported adjusted quarterly earnings this morning that topped analysts' bottom-line estimates.
Unusual Option Volume at Midday

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