Stocks Stage Furious Rebound After WHO Comments

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq managed back-to-back wins

by Patrick Martin

Published on Jan 23, 2020 at 4:34 PM

After spending most of the day deep in negative territory, the Dow finished only marginally lower. The blue-chip index furiously pared its sharp losses after the World Health Organization (WHO) assuaged coronavirus fears by avoiding a declaration of a global health emergency. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq both fought their way into the black for back-to-back gains, with the latter nabbing a new record close. Meanwhile, the Cboe Volatility Index (VIX) notched its third straight gain, and highest close in two weeks.

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

  • Options traders can't get enough of these 2 mid-caps.
  • A trusty bull signal just sounded on this pharma stock.
  • Plus, buy the dip on this biotech; call traders pounce on NFLX rebound; and a $2.2 billion setback for Ford Motor.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 29,160.09) shed 26.2 points, or 0.09%. Boeing (BA) led the 13 winners with a 2.8% win, while Travelers (TRV) paced the 17 laggards with a 5.1% drop.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 3,325.54) added 3.8 points, or 0.1%, while the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC - 9,402.48) finished 18.7 points, or 0.2%, higher.

The Cboe Volatility Index (VIX - 12.98) gained 0.07 point, or 0.5%.

closing indexes summary jan 23

nyse and nasdaq stats jan 23

5 Items on Our Radar Today

  1. The U.S. imposed sanctions on six companies for their role in helping Iran’s state-owned National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) export goods. The blacklisted companies include two in Hong Kong, one in Shanghai, and one in Dubai. (Reuters)
  2. The leading economic index -- which tracks U.S. growth -- declined in December for the fourth time in the last five months. However, the index also forecast 2% growth for early 2020, on par with estimates. The leading index takes 10 economic indicators and delivers a reading to help map out the nation's economic health. (MarketWatch)
  3. This biotech stock could break out of its funk soon.
  4. Netflix rebounded, and calls traders responded in kind.
  5. A big pre-tax loss kept Ford stock in neutral today.

corporate earnings jan 23

unusual options activity jan 23

Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

Oil Extends Skid; Gold Gains

Oil fell again today, with energy demand sapped amid the spreading coronavirus. March-dated crude futures lost $1.15, or 2%, to settle at $55.59 per barrel, the lowest settlement since Nov. 29. 

Gold prices rose today, as the appeal of safe-haven assets climbed amid early struggles in the stock market. February gold futures gained $8.70, or 0.6%, to end at $1,565.40 an ounce, its highest close since Jan. 7



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