Dow Jones Industrial Average Hit By ECB Comments

Crude bounces back, while gold takes aim at $1,300

by Karee Venema

Published on Jan 21, 2015 at 8:27 AM
Updated on Apr 20, 2015 at 5:32 PM

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:DJI) is poised to erase Tuesday's modest gains, as discouraging comments from a European Central Bank (ECB) governing council member weigh on investor sentiment. Specifically, Ewald Nowotny said speculators "should not get overexcited" about tomorrow's meeting, where the central bank is expected to unveil a new bond-buying program.

Back on the homefront, the housing sector will be in focus, with an update on housing starts and building permits due out this morning. Traders will also be reacting to a number of blue-chip earnings, including reports from IBM Corp. (NYSE:IBM) and UnitedHealth Group Inc. (NYSE:UNH).

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 more than 70 points below fair value.

Market Statistics

The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 942,491 call contracts traded on Tuesday, compared to 578,526 put contracts. The resultant single-session equity put/call ratio dropped to 0.61, while the 21-day moving average stayed at 0.64.

NYSE and Nasdaq summary

Volatility indices

Currencies and Commodities

  • The U.S. dollar index is down 0.4% at 92.72.
  • Crude oil is looking to bounce back from Tuesday's sharp loss, and was last seen 0.5% higher at $46.72 per barrel.
  • Gold, meanwhile, is poised for an eighth straight day of gains -- and a test of the round-number $1,300 mark -- up 0.4% at $1,299.80 per ounce.
Currencies and commodities

Earnings and Economic Data

The report on housing starts and building permits comes out today. American Express (AXP), UNH, eBay (EBAY), TD Ameritrade (AMTD), Discover Financial (DFS), F5 Networks (FFIV), Fifth Third (FITB), Kinder Morgan (KMI), Logitech (LOGI), Northern Trust (NTRS), Sallie Mae (SLM), SanDisk (SNDK), United Rentals (URI), U.S. Bancorp (USB), and Xilinx (XLNX) will report their earnings data.

Overseas Trading

Most Asian markets settled higher today, as optimism builds ahead of tomorrow's policy decision from the ECB. China's Shanghai Composite soared 4.7% amid a rally in brokerage names, Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 1.7%, and South Korea's Kospi tacked on 0.2%. Japan's Nikkei sat out the regional bullish bias, shedding 0.5% as the yen strengthened after the Bank of Japan chose to keep its current stimulus program intact.

European benchmarks are mixed ahead of tomorrow's highly anticipated ECB meeting. At last check, London's FTSE 100 is up 0.6%, after the country's unemployment rate fell to its lowest level in more than six years, while the French CAC 40 and the German DAX are down a respective 0.5% and 0.4%.

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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