Dow Jones Industrial Average Slumps as Oil Inventories Rise

2 Solar Stocks Stirring Analysts; Plus, the Big Biotech News

by Kirra Fedyszyn

Published on Dec 30, 2015 at 12:13 PM

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) is in the red at midday, once again following oil lower. February crude futures were last seen off 3%, and back under the $37-per-barrel level, after the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said U.S. inventories increased by 2.6 million barrels, compared to an expected dip. Meanwhile, traders are considering a surprise 0.9% drop in pending home sales.

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


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Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX) is among the stocks with unusual option volume today, with puts crossing the tape at twice their average intraday rate. In fact, ABX's intraday put/call ratio of 1.72 is near the top of its annual range. This is a significant change of pace for the stock, which has accrued a 10-day call/put volume ratio of 17.81 -- higher than 86% of the past year's readings -- on the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX). Today, the stock is down 3% at $7.36, as gold trades lower. 

Weight Watchers International, Inc. (NYSE:WTW) is among the top performers on the Big Board today, trading 14.8% higher at $22.23. After plummeting early in the year, the stock has been surging since Oprah Winfrey bought in, and today is rallying on a new Oprah-centered advertising campaign

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Pep Boys - Manny Moe & Jack (NYSE:PBY) is trading 2.9% lower at $18.39, after Bridgestone withdrew its offer, finally ending the bidding war with Carl Icahn. The shares hit an eight-year high of $19.03 on Tuesday, but have pulled back below Icahn's bid of $18.50 per share. 
 
The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) is 1 point, or 5.9%, higher at 17.03.

Today's put/call volume ratio on the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) is 1.34, with puts outnumbering calls. SPY was last seen down 0.5 point, or 0.2%, at $206.95.


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