Dow Jones Industrial Average Fades Amid Political Uncertainty

The Tech Stock Analysts Are Comparing to Jesus

Mar 17, 2017 at 12:08 PM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) is struggling on quadruple witching Friday, as traders consider a number of political developments. For starters, President Donald Trump's budget proposals remain in focus, as does his meeting today with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Wall Street is also watching for headlines out of the G-20 gathering in Germany, where U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is expected to speak out about currency manipulation. For economic news, industrial production for February came in below expectations, while consumer sentiment topped forecasts. Meanwhile, the Conference Board's index of leading economic indicators edged higher for a third straight month in February, hitting its highest point in more than 10 years. And while the S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq Composite (COMP) are following the Dow lower, all three indexes remain on pace for a weekly win. 

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

  • The tech stock analysts are comparing to Jesus. 
  • This hedge fund is calling Valeant Pharmaceuticals Intl Inc (NYSE:VRX) stock "undervalued." 
  • Plus, options traders target a recovering IT stock; Cintas hits a new high on M&A news; and SeaWorld takes a step back. 

stock market news today

Among the names seeing accelerated options trading today is IT specialist Infosys Ltd ADR (NYSE:INFY). At last check, nearly 12,000 options have changed hands -- about an even split between calls and puts -- compared to an average daily volume of just 4,239. The surge in volume comes from big action at the April 16 call and July 14 put. It's difficult to tell if the trades are related, but it's possible one trader bought to open several thousand April 16 calls, and partially funded the position by selling to open July 14 puts. With INFY shares last seen at $15.68, these traders are betting on the stock rising above $16 before the contracts expire on Friday, April 21 -- a timeline that covers the company's April 13 earnings release -- and remaining above $14 through July options expiration. INFY stock sold off after a disappointing forecast in January, but has added 16.8% since its Feb. 1 low. 

One stock gaining on the Nasdaq today is Cintas Corporation (NASDAQ:CTAS), with the workplace services stock gaining 3.9% to trade at $123.90, earlier hitting a record high of $125.93. The move comes after the company announced its acquisition of G&K Services Inc (NASDAQ:GK) has been approved by regulators. CTAS stock has now more than filled its earnings-induced bear gap from December. 

cintas stock news

Over on the New York Stock Exchange, theme park operator SeaWorld Entertainment Inc (NYSE:SEAS) is sinking today, after a downgrade to "sell" at Citigroup. The shares were last seen 3.2% lower at $18.28, but earlier found support at their rising 100-day moving average. 

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