Stocks Extend Losses as Coronavirus Fears Grip Wall Street

Gold, meanwhile, is soaring midday

Managing Editor
Mar 5, 2020 at 12:27 PM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) is extending its losses this afternoon, down almost 600 points as Wall Street fails to adjust to the potential long-term outcome of the global spread of COVID-19. With over 94,000 cases now reported by the World Health Organization (WHO), safe haven assets are looking attractive, sending April-dated gold futures up to a one-week high, up 1.2% at $1,662.70 per ounce at last check. Oil prices meanwhile, are brushing off the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries' (OPEC) decision to temporarily cut production by 1.5 million barrels per day (bpd). April-dated crude was last seen down 0.4% at $46.61 per barrel.

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

  • CEO pay cut slams Virgin Galactic stock.
  • Retailer extends losses despite earnings beat.
  • Plus, behind SPLK's post-earnings options volume surge; the latest pharma stock to pop on coronavirus news; and CMTL stock suffers massive slide. 

MMC chart March 5

One stock sporting unusual options volume today is Splunk Inc (NASDAQ:SPLK), after it's fourth-quarter earnings report missed analysts' estimates by one cent. Despite a revenue beat, and no fewer than 11 price target hikes on Wall Street, the stock was last seen down 5.7% at $146.51. Meanwhile, both calls and puts are flying of the shelves with 9,700 calls and 6,400 puts across the tape so far, six times the intraday average. Most popular is the weekly 3/6 155-strike call, where more than 2,600 contracts have been traded. Year-to-date, SPLK sits just below its breakeven mark.

Medical equipment stock Allied Healthcare Products Inc (NASDAQ:AHPI) is near the top of the Nasdaq this afternoon, last seen up 20.6% to trade at $19.46. The equity surged to a record high of $45 earlier this week, and while the stock pulled back some yesterday, today's bounce has erased these losses. This surge in shares comes as consumer coronavirus fears grow, making the company’s respiratory care and gas equipment products more appealing.

Comtech Telecommunications Corp (NASDAQ: CMTL) is one of the worst stocks on the Nasdaq today, down 17.1% to trade at $24.05, after reporting a disappointing earnings and revenue for its fourth quarter and cutting its full-year forecast. Specifically, thee company reported $161.65 million in revenue, much lower than the anticipated $170.25 million. On the charts, former support at both the 50- and 100-day moving averages look to have now turned into a double layer of overhead resistance for the shares, which are now down 31.5% year-to-date.

MMC stov chart Mar 05

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