Bank Stocks Drag Dow Jones Industrial Average Higher

The T-Mobile Options Trade Worth $36M

Jan 13, 2017 at 12:01 PM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) is trading slightly higher at midday, as fourth-quarter earnings season gets underway. Bank stocks remain in focus, with heavyweights Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC), JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM), and Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) all gaining thanks to favorable post-earnings reactions. What's more, the National Retail Federation announced better-than-expected U.S. holiday sales. After hitting yet another record high, the Nasdaq Composite (COMP) is on pace for an impressive weekly win, though the Dow is set to close the week in the red. 

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

  • The analyst attention boosting Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) and Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)
  • What caused analysts to "move to the sidelines" on Zillow Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:ZG). 
  • Checking in on the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX), the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY), and other noteworthy stats at midday.
  • Plus, a $36 million profit on T-Mobile options, Pandora rallies, and GameStop's holiday woes. 

Midday Market Stats Jan 13

Among the stocks with unusual options volume is telecom stock T-Mobile US Inc (NASDAQ:TMUS), with call volume surging to more than 300 times the intraday norm. According to Trade-Alert, a hedge fund closed a huge call spread consisting of 90,000-contract blocks of the January 50 and 55 calls for a brow-raising $36 million profit. TMUS is up 45% in the past year, and was last seen trading near $57.05. 

Looking at the top gainers on the New York Stock Exchange, streaming media interest Pandora Media Inc (NYSE:P) is up 6.9% at $12.83, on news the company will reduce its workforce by roughly 7%. While the shares sport a year-over-year lead of 29.5%, they've cooled off since touching an annual high of $14.98 in September. 

One of the biggest losers on the NYSE is video game retailer GameStop Corp. (NYSE:GME), due to the company's weak holiday sales. The shares were last seen 8.9% lower at $22.53, continuing their long-term downtrend. GME has shed 61% since its peak near $58 back in late 2013. 

Weekly Chart of GME Jan 13

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) is down 0.4 point, or 3.4%, at 11.15. 

Today's put/call volume ratio on the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) is 1.88, with puts nearly doubling calls. The SPY was last seen up 0.8 point, or 0.3%, at $227.30. 

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