Stocks Remain Static After Economic Data

The Nasdaq is hanging near breakeven

by Lillian Currens

Published on Jan 7, 2020 at 12:04 PM

Today's better-than-expected U.S. services data from the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) has done little to move stocks, as investor focus remains glued to bubbling geopolitical tensions between the U.S. and the Middle East. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) and S&P 500 Index (SPX) are both modestly lower at midday, while the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) is just atop breakeven. Even gold prices are little changed after touching fresh highs yesterday, with February-dated gold futures last seen up 0.1% at $1,570.10 an ounce.

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

  • The cybersecurity stock that could benefit from Middle East tensions. 
  • How Apache stock just toppled this key trendline
  • Plus, bulls like surging Cleveland-Cliffs stock; APOP doubles on patent news; PIR stock stumbles amid store closures.   

market stats jan 7

Cleveland-Cliffs Inc (NYSE:CLF) is seeing unusual options activity today with over 46,000 calls and 5,806 puts across the tape so far -- five times the average intraday volume. The most popular contract by a mile is the weekly 2/7 9-strike call, where positions are being bought to open, as bulls bet on upside in the coming weeks. The stock is up 3.6% to trade at $8.07. 

Cellect Biotechnology Ltd (NASDAQ:APOP) is a top performer on the Nasdaq today, following news that the Israel-based stem cell therapy concern's production method just received "intention to grant" patents from the European Patent Office and the Israeli Intellectual Property office. The shares have more than doubled in response, up 113.3% at $5.14, eyeing their first close atop the 200-day moving average since Feb. 2018. 

APOP Jan 7

The worst stock on the New York Stock Exchange so far is Pier 1 Imports Inc (NYSE:PIR), which is off 20.5% to trade at $4.06, pacing for its biggest one-day percentage drop since June, after announcing the closure of half its stores. The home goods retailer will also be cutting jobs and cast doubts on its ability to continue as a going concern. The security is also pacing for its lowest close in over four months. 

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