Spiking Coronavirus Cases Weigh on Dow, Tech Treads Water

Initial jobless claims declined for the fourth-straight week

Assistant Editor
Nov 12, 2020 at 11:47 AM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) is down over 125 points midday, as the upbeat vaccine enthusiasm that has permeated the market fades amid an exponential rise in coronavirus cases. Elsewhere, the S&P 500 Index (SPX) is also in the red, while the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) is marginally higher thanks to an extended tech sector rally. Meanwhile, potentially paring further broad-market losses is encouraging employment data. Initial weekly jobless claims came in at 709,000 for last week -- lower than expected and falling from 757,000 from the previous week to mark a fourth-straight decline -- though the pace of recovery has slowed.

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

  • A look at pandemic-racked Macy's stock ahead of earnings.
  • Blue-chip retailer receives analyst praise on quick recovery.
  • Plus, options traders blitz theater stock; PDD hits fresh record high; and APLT drops after reporting third-quarter losses.

mmc nov 12

One stock seeing notable options activity on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) today is Cinemark Holdings Inc (NYSE:CNK), down 4.2% at $12.61 at last check. Likely correcting slightly from its early-week bull gap on vaccine news, options traders are piling on today. So far today, 11,000 calls and 8,596 puts have crossed the tape -- six times what's typically seen at this point -- with overall options volume pacing for the top percentile of its annual range. The December 15 call is the most popular, followed by the December 7.50 put. CNK is down 62.6% year-to-date. 

CNK mmc

Meanwhile, China-based Pinduoduo Inc (NASDAQ:PDD) is up 19% at $132.64 at last check, after the company's surprise upbeat third-quarter report. Pinduoduo reported earnings per share of 5 cents on revenue of $2.14 billion, much higher than the 17 cent loss and $1.84 billion anticipated by analysts. Gapping to a new record high of $138.27 out of the gate, PDD is up around 254% year-to-date. 

On the other end of the spectrum, Applied Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:APLT) is down 11.3% at $13.75, after wider-than-expected third-quarter losses per share. With the descending 10-day moving average acting as pressure, today's drop has APLT at a fresh annual low of $13.58 earlier. In the past eight months, the stock is down 67.8%. 

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