Dow Jones Industrial Average Rallies as Earnings Overshadow Oil

Should We Be More Worried?

by Karee Venema

Published on Jan 19, 2016 at 12:11 PM
Updated on Jan 19, 2016 at 12:18 PM

Bulls have returned from the long weekend with renewed vigor, and at last check, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) was up 70 points and back above the psychologically significant 16,000 mark. Helping to boost the blue-chip barometer is well-received earnings from UnitedHealth Group Inc (NYSE:UNH), as well as encouraging data out of China. However, the Dow and the S&P 500 Index (SPX) -- which is attempting to buck this week's historically bearish bias -- are off their session highs, as oil prices have turned lower.

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Among the stocks with unusual put volume today is Sarepta Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:SRPT), with the contracts crossing the tape at 11 times what's typically seen at this point in the day. At last check, shares of the biopharmaceutical firm were off 5.3% at $13.52 -- thanks to some negative analyst attention -- and option traders are betting on the stock to sink into single digits over the next several weeks. Specifically, buy-to-open activity has been detected at SRPT's February 10 put, the equity's most active option thus far.

Tiffany & Co. (NYSE:TIF) is one of the leading laggards on the Big Board today, down 5.1% at $64.31 -- and fresh off a two-year low of $62.90. The high-end jewelry retailer offered up a dismal full-year forecast earlier, and subsequently received price-target cuts from Oppenheimer (to $78) and Nomura (to $90).

Viacom, Inc. (NASDAQ:VIAB) is among the best performers on the Nasdaq today, amid calls from activist investor Eric Jackson for a company wide shake-up, including the resignation of Executive Chairman Sumner Redstone. Most recently, shares of the entertainment issue were up 5.5% at $42.04 -- and on pace to close north of their 32-day moving average for the first time since late November.

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The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) is down 3.1% at 26.18.

Today's put/call volume ratio on the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) is 1.80, with puts nearly doubling calls. SPY is up 0.8% at $189.26.


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