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by 10/10/2000 9:46 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:
Yesterday after the close, Xerox (XRX – 10-3/4) announced that it was cutting its quarterly dividend from 20 cents per share to five cents per share. This follows last week's news that the company expected to report a loss of 15 to 20 cents per share for the third quarter, well below analysts' estimates for earnings of 12 cents per share. Since that announcement, the equity has tumbled 30 percent to reach levels not seen since late 1991.

Apparently, hope springs eternal in XRX's options pit. Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) for this beleaguered stock has plunged from a high near 0.90 in July to today's reading of 0.32, which is near its lowest level of the year. Such optimism in the face of technical and fundamental weakness suggests that the shares could continue to erode over the near term. For more information on SOIR, please visit Schaeffer's Daily Sentiment. <
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by 10/10/2000 9:28 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:
National Discount Brokers (NDB – 25-1/4) and other online brokerage firms should see some lively action in today's trading. News came out this morning that Deutsche Bank has offered to purchase NDB for $49 per share. This represents a hefty 94-percent premium from yesterday's close. Currently, Deutsche Bank owns 16 percent of the company.

Options investors have not been too keen on NDB, as peak front-month open interest is just 1,288 contracts on the deep out-of-the money October 45 call. Total open interest for options with up to three month of life left is 1,219 put positions versus 4,738 call positions. Average daily trading volume on the stock is just 237,591 shares.


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by 10/10/2000 8:53 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:
Another sign of the fragility in Jalan's economic recovery surfaced Monday as Chiyoda Mutual Life Insurance Company filed for court protection from its creditors. The action by Japan's 12th largest life insurer is said to be the largest filing of its kind in the country.
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by 10/9/2000 3:55 PM
Stocks quoted in this article:
As a follow-up to a Market Observation on Dean Foods (DF – 34-3/8), the stock has maintained its upward momentum after announcing on September 20 that it missed Street earnings expectations. Since their September 19 close, the shares have boomed 20 percent higher, using reliable support from their ascending 10-day moving average. DF is marginally higher in late-session activity after reaching its top intraday mark since August 21 earlier today.

Short interest on the equity declined more than 50 percent from mid-August to mid-September, hitting a five-month low. In addition, information from Multex shows that eight of 10 analysts now covering DF rate it as a "buy" or better.

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by 10/9/2000 3:43 PM
Stocks quoted in this article:
Nextel Communications (NXTL – 39-13/16) has risen by nearly two percent this afternoon, just two sessions after logging an annual low. The security remains below all of its significant moving averages, including its 20-month moving average. The shares haven't finished a month lower than this long-term trendline since December 1998.

In NXTL's options pit today, 4,015 contracts have crossed the tape on the January 45 call. This out-of-the-money strike has open interest of just 981 contracts, which indicates that most of this afternoon's volume should translate into new positions. This is currently among the most-active calls on the AMEX.


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