Dow Jones Industrial Average, Oil Gain; Nasdaq Hits Record High

Why This Biotech Stock is Bombing

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Aug 23, 2016 at 12:02 PM

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) shot higher out of the gate -- briefly flirting with a 100-point lead -- but was last seen sitting on more modest gains. Stocks are reacting to a mixed round of data, including a surprise jump to a nearly nine-year high in new home sales for July and an unexpected decline in manufacturing activity. In general, though, tech stocks continue to outperform, sending the Nasdaq Composite (COMP) to a record high earlier. Meanwhile, on the commodities front, crude oil has overcome early headwinds -- with October-dated crude futures trading 1.1% higher at $47.93 per barrel -- after a Reuters report signaled Iran may be willing to participate in a coordinated production freeze.

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midday market stats august 23

Among the stocks with unusual options volume is Monsanto Company (NYSE:MON), amid mounting buyout buzz. At last check, MON options were trading at six times the expected intraday rate, with potential buy-to-open activity transpiring at the October 115 call. Meanwhile, the shares are up 2.6% at $107.17.

One of the top stocks on the New York Stock Exchange is retailer Best Buy Co Inc (NYSE:BBY), following a standout turn in the earnings confessional. The shares were last seen 17.2% higher at $38.45, fresh off a 52-week intraday peak, and on track for their highest close in over a year.

bby daily august 23

Another top performer on the Big Board is Tableau Software Inc (NYSE:DATA), as analysts react positively to a C-suite shakeup. Currently, the tech stock is 12.8% higher at $61.91, and testing resistance at its 200-day moving average.
 
The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) is off 0.3 point, or 2.3%, at 11.99.

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, SPY is up 0.8 point, or 0.3%, at $219.28, after earlier hitting a record high of $219.60.

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