Dismal Manufacturing Data Drags Dow Lower

President Trump tweeted about the Fed again

by Patrick Martin

Published on Oct 1, 2019 at 12:03 PM

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) has relinquished an early morning lead, after the Institute for Supply Management's (ISM) manufacturing index fell to 47.8% in September -- its lowest level in over 10 years -- indicating trade tensions are creating a headwind for the U.S. economy. Shortly after the report was released, President Donald Trump took to Twitter to criticize the Federal Reserve, saying the central bank "allowed the Dollar to get so strong," and that it doesn't "have a clue." The S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) are also firmly in the red on the first day of the fourth quarter.

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

  • Wells Fargo targets 20% upside for this software stock.
  • Cleveland-Cliffs stock is brushing off this morning's bear note.
  • Plus, Halliburton call buyers eye November surge; MNK higher after drug data; and ULTA gets a J-Lo boost.

Midday Market Stats Oct 1

One name seeing unusual options volume today is Halliburton Company (NYSE:HAL), with volume accelerated due to heavy trading at the November 20 call. Roughly 50,000 contracts have traded here, about 17 times the next closest option, and data points to buy-to-open activity. If this is the case, bullish traders are betting on the energy name rising above $20 in the next two months. The shares were last seen down 0.4% at $18.76, and have shed 29% in 2019.

Mallinckrodt PLC (NYSE:MNK) was trading 10% higher earlier, after the drugmaker announced upbeat Acthar gel drug results in treating multiple sclerosis. The shares have since pared these gains to 0.4% to trade at $2.42. Thanks to a sale agreement, MNK has added 69% since its Sept. 5 bottom of $1.43.

Ulta Beauty Inc (NASDAQ:ULTA) is another name trading higher today, up 5.3% at $263.92 after Jennifer Lopez launched her new fragrance exclusively with the company. Additionally, an independent director for the beauty retailer said they bought roughly 250,000 ULTA shares in recent sessions. ULTA is set to topple its 30-day moving average today for the first time since an earnings-induced bear gap in late August.

MMC Daily Chart ULTA

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