Ahead of Fed, Dow Jones Industrial Average Trims Gains as Oil Tanks

Crude stockpiles are at an all-time high

Alex Eppstein
Jan 28, 2015 at 11:43 AM
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After a fast start to the session, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:DJI) has cooled its jets, and briefly dipped below breakeven, up 36 points. Weighing on investor sentiment is news that U.S. crude stockpiles hit their highest mark on record -- pressuring futures about 2% lower -- and Goldman Sachs' sector-wide downgrade on commodities to "underweight" from "neutral." Meanwhile, traders are eagerly awaiting this afternoon's release of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) policy update and earnings from Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB).

Continue reading for more on today's market -- and don't miss:

Midday Market Stats

Among the stocks with notable option volume is biopharmaceutical firm Opko Health Inc. (NYSE:OPK), where calls and puts are both running at 11 times the average intraday clip. The session's biggest transaction centered on a block of 7,885 January 2016 10-strike calls, which was likely bought to open. At last check, OPK was down 0.8% at $11.29, following Tuesday's annual high of $11.60.

For more midday statistics and stocks on the move, head to page 2.

Unlike sector peer AK Steel Holding Corporation (NYSE:AKS), United States Steel Corporation (NYSE:X) is surging today -- and is among the biggest advancers on the Big Board. Specifically, the stock is up nearly 11% at $23.54, after crushing quarterly estimates last night. However, the shares have still lost nearly half their value since reaching a three-year peak of $46.55 in mid-September.

Daily Chart of X Since September 2014

Video game maker Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ:EA) is one of the notable winners on the Nasdaq, adding 10.6% to hover near $53.54, and earlier hitting a six-year high of $54.11. Sparking the rally was a strong quarterly earnings report and subsequent round of positive analyst notes.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) is up 0.8 point, or 4.8%, at 18.04.

Today's put/call volume ratio on the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) is 2.23, with puts more than doubling calls. At last check, SPY is a hair south of breakeven at $202.69.


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