Stocks Muted Ahead of Big Fed Announcement

Fed leader Jerome Powell is expected to speak later in the day

Digital Content Manager
Jun 16, 2021 at 12:18 PM
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Wall Street is holding its collective breath ahead of the conclusion of the Federal Reserve's two-day policy meeting, with stocks reflecting that muted sentiment at midday, as investors await comments from Fed Chairman Jerome Powell. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) was last seen down 24 points, erasing some of this morning's losses. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 Index (SPX) is hovering just below its breakeven, while the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) is sporting modest gains.

Ahead of the big announcement, traders are poring over a slew of economic data, including a rise in U.S. import prices and housing starts. Commodities are also in focus, after China said it plans to release industrial metals such as zinc, copper and aluminum from its national reserves, which would lead to a further reduction of some of those prices.

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

  • Upgrade tailwinds are helping these 2 cruise stocks sail higher.
  • Fresh analyst coverage is giving SoFi Technologies stock a boost.
  • Plus, options traders blast tech name; KIN surges after million-dollar buyout; and discounted stock offering sinks IKT. 

MMC Stats 616

One stock seeing an unusual amount of options activity today is Oracle Corporation (NYSE:ORCL), last seen down 6.7% at $76.17 at last check. Though the tech concern reported a fourth-quarter earnings and revenue beat, resulting in at least 11 price-target hikes. The company also posted a dismal current-quarter profit forecast. So far today, 72,000 calls and 77,000 puts have crossed the tape, which is 12 times the intraday average. Most popular by far is the June 75 put followed by the 80 put in the same series. On the charts, the equity is fresh off a June 8, all-time high of $85.02, and has the support of the 70-day moving average, which looks poised to contain today's bear gap. Year-over-year, Oracle stock remains up 39.3%.

Near the top of the Nasdaq today is Kindred Biosciences Inc (NASDAQ:KIN), up 45% at $9.19 at last check. The massive surge came after Elanco Animal Health (ELAN) said it would buy the company for approximately $440 million, or about $9.25 per share. The security earlier surged to an annual high of $9.20, just days after pulling back to its recently supportive 20-day moving average. Over the last six months, KIN has added 131.5%.

KIN 20 Day

Meanwhile, at the bottom of the Nasdaq is Inhibikase Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:IKT). The equity is down 23.9% to trade at an all-time low of $3.07 this afternoon, and is also the top percentage loser across all U.S. exchanges. The negative price action came after the company on Tuesday offered 15 million shares of its common stock at $3 per share, which is a 25.7% discount to its previous close. The pharma name expects the gross proceeds of about $45 million to fund early and mid-stage trials of its Parkinson's disease treatment. The security has been trending lower on the charts since first going public in December with an initial public offering (IPO) price of $10 per share. Year-to-date, IKT has shed 55.4%.

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