Dismal Jobs Data, WMT Earnings Send Dow Plummeting

Oil and gas prices, meanwhile, are on the rise

Deputy Editor
Feb 18, 2021 at 12:15 PM
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A round of disappointing jobs data, paired with a weak 2022 forecast from blue-chip retailer Walmart (WMT) is pouring cold water on stocks this afternoon. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) is down roughly 213 points. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) are also eyeing sizeable drops, with the former taking a hit as Big Tech begins to sell off.

Attention is also being turned to this week's unusual winter weather in Texas, which has sent oil and gas prices surging. Meanwhile, the Cboe Volatility Index (VIX) continues to grind higher, stoked by anxieties over the recent rise in U.S. bond yields and inflation expectations. 

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

  • The 2 volatility strategies option traders need right now. 
  • Checking in on Marriott stock after its quarterly revenue miss.
  • Plus, bears flock to shorted UAVS; GTEC surges after inking cooperation agreement; and NXTD falls from three-year highs. 

midday stats feb 18

Ageagle Aerial Systems Inc (NYSE:UAVS) is seeing a surge in bearish activity in its options pits today. The shares were down 16.6% at $11.75 at last check, after Bonitas Research said it shorted the stock. The security breached the 20-day moving average -- a trendline that helped guide it to a Feb. 10, record high of $17.49 -- though it still sports a mind-boggling 1975.4% year-over-year lead. Circling back to the options activity, so far 15,000 puts have exchanged hands, which is 13 times the intraday average, compared to 6,820 calls. The February 12.50 put is the most popular, followed by the 10 put in the same monthly series, with new positions being opened at both. 

One of the best performing stocks on the Nasdaq today is Greenland Technologies Holding Corp (NASDAQ:GTEC). The security is up 139.2% at $18.08 at last check, after the company signed a cooperation agreement with Fujian South China Heavy Machinery Manufacture (SOCMA) to use their existing supply-chain and technology in the production of its electric vehicles. Shares hit an all-time high of $26.42 earlier in the session, toppling overhead pressure at the $10 mark, which put the brakes on several of the equity's rally attempts over the past few months. 

One of the worst performers on the Nasdaq, meanwhile, its NXT-ID Inc (NASDAQ:NXTD), which is down 30.5% at $2.37 this afternoon. While the reason behind this drop wasn't immediately clear, the equity has been volatile on the charts of late, hitting a three-year high of $3.44 during yesterday's session. The security is still up over 107% in February alone, and it looks like support at the 40-day moving average -- which reigned in some of this volatility back in late January -- could act as a floor once more. 

NXTD Feb 18

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