Dow Retreats as Japan Gets Slapped With a Downgrade

Japan's Nikkei settled at a seven-year high just ahead of a downgrade at Moody's

Dec 1, 2014 at 8:23 AM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:DJI) is poised to retreat from record-high territory, with futures pointed decidedly lower ahead of the bell. Stoking the bearish flames is Moody's downgrade of Japan's credit rating -- which occurred just after the Nikkei closed at a seven-year high -- as well as a continued sell-off in oil futures. Meanwhile, gold is also headed south, after voters in Switzerland rebuffed a proposal to raise the country's gold reserves. Against this backdrop, the DJI is bracing for a 42-point plunge right out of the gate.

And now, on to the numbers...

Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P and Nasdaq futures

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average 2 Minute (INDEXDJX:.DJI) are 42 points below fair value.

Market Statistics

The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 810,374 call contracts traded in Friday's holiday-shortened session, compared to 526,359 put contracts. The resultant single-session equity put/call ratio edged up to 0.65, while the 21-day moving average remained at 0.59.

NYSE and Nasdaq summary

Volatility indices

Currencies and Commodities

  • The U.S. dollar index is down 0.3% at 88.12.
  • Crude oil is poised to extend last week's losses, and is 0.4% lower at $65.89 per barrel.
  • Gold, meanwhile, has shed 0.2% to hover at $1,173.40 per ounce.
Currencies and commodities

Earnings and Economic Data

Starting off the week will be the Institute for Supply Management's (ISM) manufacturing index and Markit's flash purchasing managers manufacturing index (PMI). Mattress Firm (MFRM) and Shoe Carnival (SCVL) will present earnings.

Overseas Trading

Asian equities finished mostly lower today, amid falling oil prices and a pair of reports that showed declining factory activity in China. By the close, Hong Kong's Hang Seng was down 2.6%, despite a rally in financials, while South Korea's Kospi shed 0.8%, and the Shanghai Composite lost 0.1%. Japan's Nikkei managed to buck the regional bearish bias, jumping 0.8% to a seven-year high on a cooling yen and a strong reading on corporate spending.

European bourses are being pressured into the red as a drop in commodities sparks a sell-off among mining and energy names. Additionally, traders are digesting a round of disappointing eurozone -- and regional -- manufacturing data. At last check, London's FTSE 100 is off 0.9%, while the French CAC 40 and the German DAX are each flirting with 0.4% losses.

Overseas markets

Unusual Put and Call Activity:

For an explanation of how to use this information, check out our Education Center topics on Option Volume and Open Interest Configurations.

Unusual options activity - puts

Unusual options activity - calls


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