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by 11/2/2000 11:58 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:
Shares of Genzyme General (GENZ - 80-1/8) are getting a boost from an upgrade by a major brokerage house today. Today's rally pushed the stock to a new all-time high of 82-15/16. Although the shares have since receded from this level, they still remain nearly 10 percent higher for the day. It was also announced this morning that the FDA will allow the company's license agreement for Fabrazyme to bypass a December advisory committee review. Instead, the application for Fabrazyme has been accepted for priority review.<
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by 11/2/2000 11:55 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:
Humana (HUM - 13-1/8) shares have quietly mounted the comeback trail during the second half of the year. Since the end of June, the stock has appreciated nearly 170 percent. Today the November 12-1/2 call has seen some large block trades cross the tape. Over 3,000 contracts have already changed hands on the option. With open interest of nearly 8,000 contracts heading into today's action, it is possible that much of today's volume is the result of traders liquidating open positions. <
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by 11/2/2000 11:52 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:
Last night after the market close, Gap (GPS - 26-3/4) bestowed upon Wall Street another guidance to lower earnings. The company now places its third-quarter net at between 20 and 22 cents per share, below the current consensus estimate of 23 cents. In addition, GPS reported that third-quarter same-store-sales (sales from stores open one year or longer) fell by eight percent, while October same-store-sales fell by two percent.

According to Schaeffer's Daily Sentiment, the Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) for GPS stood at 0.62 on Wednesday. After yesterday's open interest translations, the reading has shown a persistence in its upward (or pessimistic) configuration to its current 0.65 reading. The SOIR ceased its downward trend just after the shares bottomed and has been rising (becoming more bearishly configured) as the shares persist in their upward move. There now exists the possibility that most of the "bad news" on the stock is on the table and a relief rally is in store.

The options battle seems to be around the 25 strike today, as 1,435 contracts have traded on the November 25 call versus 1,233 contracts on the November 25 put.

The stock has traded as high as 27-1/4 this morning and is attempting to declare victory over the peak front-month open interest November 25 call strike. <
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by 11/2/2000 9:48 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:
For the week ended October 28, U.S. jobless claims came in unchanged at 308,000. This number was slightly less than analyst estimates that called for a 3,000 increase in the number of first-time claims for unemployment benefits. Despite coming in below Wall Street estimates, these results are not expected to adversely affect the financial markets or the Federal Reserve's current interest rate policy. <
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by 11/2/2000 9:45 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:
This morning, the Labor Department released third quarter non-farm productivity and unit labor cost results. Although analysts expected productivity to rise by 3.0 percent, the actual number came in at a more robust 3.8 percent advance. Unit labor costs notched their biggest increase since the second quarter of 1999 with a 2.5-percent advance. These figures were dramatically different from the second quarter, when productivity rose by a 6.1-percent clip and unit labor costs actually declined by 0.2 percent. The market seems pleased with today's results, as the data indicate that inflation remains in check, which gives the Federal Reserve little reason to change its current interest rate policy. In response to the report, the December contract of the S&P 500 futures (SP/Z0 - 1439.00) is up seven points, indicating a positive open.
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