Dow Jones Industrial Average Down 99 Points; S&P Back in Correction

2 High-Flying Energy Stocks

Feb 24, 2016 at 12:10 PM
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It's a dismal day on Wall Street, with oil prices continuing to drive the direction of the stock market. In fact, despite a brief bounce following the Energy Information Administration's (EIA) report that showed a smaller-than-expected rise in crude inventories, April-dated crude futures have dropped 0.4% to $31.74 per barrel.

Traders are also digesting the latest Fed chatter, as well as a round of disappointing economic data. Specifically, Markit's flash services index fell below the 50 mark -- indicating contraction -- to a 28-month low, while January new home sales dropped by more than expected. Against this backdrop, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) is down nearly triple digits, while the S&P 500 Index (SPX) has slipped back into correction territory.

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


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Among the stocks with unusual call volume is Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX), with the contracts crossing at seven times the average intraday pace. The gold stock is continuing yesterday's analyst-induced rally -- up 5.5% at $14.29 -- thanks to a rebound in gold, and after TD Securities boosted its price target to $15.50 from $14.50. In the options pits, the security's January 2017 series is hot, with nearly 59,000 contracts collectively traded at the 20-, 22-, and 25-strike calls.

Hertz Global Holdings Inc (NYSE:HTZ) is one of the leading laggards on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), down 16.4% at $7.22. A disappointing outlook for Avis Budget Group Inc. (NASDAQ:CAR) is having a ripple effect throughout the sector, and, as a result, HTZ has lost a short-term foothold atop its 10-day moving average.

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Chemical concern -- and Dupont (NYSE:DD) spinoff -- Chemours Co (NYSE:CC), meanwhile, is one of the biggest advancers on the NYSE, up 20.3% to $4.87. After reporting a big fourth-quarter loss, the company said it expects to finish its strategic review this summer (subscription required) -- and lower costs by roughly $500 million by the end of 2017.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) is up 0.6 point, or 3%, at 21.61. 

Today's put/call volume ratio on the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) is 2.06, with puts more than doubling calls. SPY is down 0.5% at $191.32.
 

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