Solid Start to Earnings Season Boosts Dow Higher

Crude breached $45 earlier for the first time in more than five years

Jan 13, 2015 at 8:22 AM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:DJI) is headed higher ahead of the bell, as Alcoa Inc (NYSE:AA) unofficially kicked off earnings season with a bang -- topping fourth-quarter profit and revenue forecasts. Corporate earnings are apparently overshadowing ongoing woes in the energy sector, as oil breached the $45 level earlier for the first time since April 2009, after the United Arab Emirates' oil minister said the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) will not reduce production. On tap for today are U.S. Treasury budget data and the Labor Department's Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS), as well as a number of earnings reports, led by homebuilder KB Home (NYSE:KBH).

And now, on to the numbers...

Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P and Nasdaq futures

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:.DJI) are roughly 90 points above fair value.

Market Statistics

The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 982,561 call contracts traded on Monday, compared to 672,618 put contracts. The resultant single-session equity put/call ratio rose to 0.68, while the 21-day moving average edged lower to 0.64.

NYSE and Nasdaq summary

Volatility indices

Currencies and Commodities

  • The U.S. dollar index is up 0.3% at 92.28.
  • Crude oil is headed lower once again, down 2.8% to $45.45 per barrel.
  • Gold has added 0.5% at $1,239.40 per ounce.
Currencies and commodities

Earnings and Economic Data

The U.S. Treasury budget data and the Labor Department's JOLTS are scheduled for release today. CSX Corporation (CSX), DragonWave (DRWI), KBH, and Progress Software (PRGS) will step into the earnings confessional.

Overseas Trading

Asian stocks were mixed, as traders weighed an ongoing slump in oil prices against encouraging December trade figures out of China and a fifth straight monthly surplus in Japan's current account. On the positive side of the ledger were Hong Kong's Hang Seng and China's Shanghai Composite, which tacked on 0.8% and 0.2%, respectively. However, South Korea's Kospi gave back 0.2%, while Japan's Nikkei -- after being shuttered on Monday for holiday -- slid 0.6% amid weakness in the retail sector.

By contrast, European bourses are sitting higher at midday, buoyed by a rally in retail stocks. London's FTSE 100 is up 0.5%, despite the nation's inflation rate falling last month to its lowest level in 14 years. Elsewhere, France's CAC 40 and Germany's DAX are each up 1.3%.

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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