Dow Plummets on Powell Comments, Pandemic Concerns

The VIX is spiking once more amid this week's volatility

Assistant Editor
Nov 30, 2021 at 12:08 PM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) is down 532 points midday amid another brutal selloff on Wall Street. The blue-chip index is extending its early-morning losses after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell hinted the central bank was open to speeding up the monthly bond-buying taper. The S&P 500 (SPX) and Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) are sharply lower as well, as comments from Moderna's (MRNA) CEO Stephane Bancel on the vaccine's effectiveness against the Covid-19 omicron variant weigh on Wall Street.

For the month, the Dow and S&P 500 are headed for losses, while the Nasdaq is still holding on to a gain. Meanwhile, amid a wildly volatile week, Wall Street's "fear gauge," the Cboe Volatility Index (VIX) is up around 21%. Elsewhere, U.S. consumer confidence dropped to 109.5 in November -- its lowest level in nine months, and oil prices are headed for their steepest monthly decline since the start of the pandemic. 

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

  • This drug stock is a victim of FDA speculation.  
  • One analyst pumped the brakes on Dollar Tree stock.  
  • Plus, WM options surge; CPIX soars to annual highs; and SNEX drops after earnings.

MMC Stats Nov 30

Waste Management Inc (NYSE:WM) is seeing an options surge one day after its new record peak of $168.03. So far, 9,343 calls and 9,362 puts have crossed the tape, which is 32 times the intraday average. The February 165 put is the most popular, followed by the February 165 call, with new positions being opened at both and possible spread activity detected. This options volume also comes ahead of the company's ex-dividend date on Dec. 2. 

Soaring to the top of the Nasdaq today is Cumberland Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:CPIX), up 110% at to trade at $4.62, after the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the company's pain reliever, Caldolor, for pre-operative administration. Now trading at fresh annual highs, CPIX hit a record low of $2.20 yesterday.  

Meanwhile, Stonex Group Inc (NASDAQ:SNEX) is dropping lower, down 19.2% at $53.15, after the financial services company reported much lower-than-expected fiscal fourth-quarter earnings and revenue. To follow, Jefferies cut its price target to $78 from $80. Today's negative price action has SNEX breaching its 320-day moving average for the first time since May of 2020. Year-to-date, the equity is now down 8.7%. 

SNEX MMC

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