Dow Jones Industrial Average Could Snap Volatile Streak

One Biotech's Killer August; Plus, 3 Stocks Ripe for a Short Squeeze

Aug 13, 2015 at 11:59 AM
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After 17 straight days of triple-digit trading ranges, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) may be on the verge of snapping that streak. The blue-chip barometer has traded on both sides of breakeven -- but in a span of less than 90 points -- as traders weigh encouraging big-cap earnings and a global stock rally against tumbling crude and gold prices. In addition, Wall Street is digesting a bigger-than-expected uptick in weekly jobless claims, which is fueling more rate-hike-timing chatter.


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Among the stocks with notable option volume is China-based e-commerce concern Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA). After sinking to an all-time low of $71.03 on yesterday's earnings miss, oversold BABA is on the mend -- up 2.4% at $75.14, despite another round of negative analyst notes. BABA options are trading at 1.6 times the average intraday clip, with some traders seemingly buying to open weekly 8/14 75-strike calls. These contracts will move deeper into the money the higher the stock rebounds north of $75 through tomorrow's close, when the contracts expire.


One of the top gainers on the Nasdaq is biotech Ocular Therapeutix Inc (NASDAQ:OCUL). After exploring year-to-date lows yesterday, the security has surged 20.6% to trade at $21.71, after Morgan Stanley initiated coverage with an "overweight" rating and a $24 price target. The stock is now on pace to end atop its 10-day moving average for the first time since July 23.



One of the top losers on the Big Board is restaurant chain Shake Shack Inc (NYSE:SHAK), which has surrendered 8.6% to sit at $59.19. The company priced a secondary offering at $60 per share -- south of yesterday's close at $64.79.


The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) is down 0.3 point, or 1.8%, at 13.36.


Today's put/call volume ratio on the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) is 1.42, with puts outpacing calls. At last check, the SPY was down 0.2 point, or 0.1%, at $208.76.



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