VIX Spikes as Tariff Fears Sink Stocks

Just a handful Dow components are trading in positive territory

Jun 19, 2018 at 11:51 AM
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Stocks are pulling back sharply today due to the most recent tariff threat out of the Trump administration. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) has shed more than 300 points -- putting it on pace for a sixth straight down day, which would mark its longest losing streak since March 2017. Upgraded Verizon (VZ) stock is one of only a handful of blue chips in the black, while Boeing (BA) and Caterpillar (CAT) pace the losers.

Heavy losses out of the tech sector are pressuring the S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq Composite (IXIC), as well. Meanwhile, the Cboe Volatility Index (VIX) is on the rise, briefly topping the 14 handle for the first time since June 1.

Continue reading for more on today's market, including:

  • 3 FAANG stocks making headlines today.
  • More downside could be ahead for this emerging markets ETF.
  • Plus, big Halliburton call buyers; CVS stock delivers gains; and Snap shares pullback.

midday market stats june 19

One name seeing heavy options trading today is Halliburton Company (NYSE:HAL). The oilfield services giant is down 0.6% at $46.34, set for a third straight close below its formerly supportive 200-day moving average, but options traders are betting on a rebound. More than 11,000 contracts have crossed at the August 50 call -- compared to around 1,000 at the next most popular option -- and data points to buy-to-open activity. These bulls are betting on HAL stock toppling the $50 mark before the calls expire in about two months.

hal stock price

Pharmacy stock CVS Health Corp (NYSE:CVS) is one of the few names posting gains on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), thanks to news the company's prescription delivery service is now available nationwide. CVS shares were last seen trading up 3.1% at $69.84, though this still leaves them below the $70 level that's acted as a ceiling since late February. Plus, the stock's 200-day moving average sits just overhead, and it remains in a longer-term downtrend that's been in place since the 2015 all-time high around $113.

On the flip side, Snap Inc (NYSE:SNAP) is a huge loser on the NYSE, down 7.5% at $13.00, following a price-target cut at Cowen. This would end a seven-session win streak for SNAP shares, which yesterday topped out near the newly formed 200-day moving average, also the site of its early May bear gap.


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