Earnings Season Highlights

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A collection of noteworthy post-earnings reactions
Published on Aug 24, 2015 at 3:21 PM
Updated on Jul 9, 2020 at 1:25 PM
  • Stock Market News
  • By the Numbers

Unless you've been hiding under a rock, the market has been a little nuts over the past week. After wrapping up their worst week since 2011, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) and its major index peers plummeted out of the gate, with the blue-chip barometer dropping more than 1,000 points (and hitting a new annual low) at its intraday bottom.  That said, here are some interesting market stats:

  • The Nasdaq Composite (COMP) initially fell below 4,300 for the first time since October. If the COMP surrenders triple-digits again today, it'll be a third straight session.
  • Most major indexes are in "correction" territory -- usually measured by 10% off a recent high.
  • After more than doubling last week -- the biggest weekly percentage gain of the modern era -- the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) skyrocketed to territory not charted since early 2009, reflecting widespread fear. "Early action in SPX options, which are used to calculate VIX, was so chaotic that quotes were either zero or so wide that they were unusable in the calculation," reported Trade-Alert's Henry Schwartz.

  • The Options Clearing Corporation's (OCC) all-exchange, all-equity put/call volume ratio hit 1.44 on Friday, marking the largest daily reading ever (going back to 2009), per Schaeffer's Quantitative Analyst Chris Prybal (see chart below).



Published on Oct 23, 2014 at 2:27 PM
Updated on Jul 9, 2020 at 1:24 PM
  • General

U.S. stocks shot higher out of the gate, thanks to some high-profile earnings beats. Among Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:DJI) components, Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) and 3M Co (NYSE:MMM) are leading the pack, with the former flirting with triple-digit territory, and the latter notching a new record high of $147.92. Outside of blue chips, Tractor Supply Company (NASDAQ:TSCO) and Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) are among the stocks enjoying earnings-induced tailwinds. On the economic front, first-time filings for unemployment benefits rose roughly in line with expectations last week, marking the sixth straight week beneath the 300,000 level.

Against this backdrop, the Dow is up 303 points, or 1.8%, the S&P 500 Index (SPX) has added 34.8 points, or 1.8%, and the Nasdaq Composite (COMP) is flirting with a 92-point, or 2.1%, gain. For the week, the indexes are on pace for gains of 2.3%, 4%, and 5.1%, respectively.

Meanwhile, the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) has dropped 2.1 points, or 11.5%, bringing its week-to-date loss to a steep 28.1%. Just last week, the market's "fear gauge" touched a two-year high of 31.06. Another 10% daily drop for the VIX would mark the index's fourth in five sessions.

On the New York Stock Exchange, 2,487 equities are trading higher, compared to just 561 in the red, resulting in an advance/decline ratio of 4.43. Likewise, 100 stocks have tagged new annual highs, compared to 29 hitting fresh lows. Brookfield Residential Properties Inc (NYSE:BRP) is the biggest gainer on the Big Board, up 22% thanks to a buyout bid from Brookfield Asset Management Inc. (USA) (NYSE:BAM).

It's a similar setup on the Nasdaq, with 1,987 stocks trading higher, compared to 546 in the red, resulting in an advance/decline ratio of 3.64. Forty-six securities have notched new highs, while 34 are trading in new-low territory. The biggest percentage gainer on the index is Infinera Corp. (NASDAQ:INFN), up 28% as analysts and shareholders applaud a stellar earnings report.

Published on Dec 12, 2014 at 11:46 AM
Updated on Jul 9, 2020 at 1:23 PM
  • General

2014 was the year of cyberattacks, big mergers, bigger IPOs, Ebola, black gold, and cringe-worthy elevator footage. Overall, it was a good year for the market, and we hope it was a profitable year for our friends in the investment community and beyond. That said, let's see where we stand and how far we've come in the past year. Here are 14 of the hottest topics in '14:

1. Stocks Hit Record Highs

The S&P 500 Index (SPX) -- our broad-market barometer -- is on pace for a year-over-year gain of 9.1%, and explored record-high territory just last week. The tech-rich Nasdaq Composite (COMP) is poised to finish 2014 12% higher, and is just off its 14-year peak, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) is headed for its sixth straight year-over-year gain -- a feat accomplished just one other time since 1900, during the '90s tech boom -- up 5.1%.

2. Economy On the Mend

On the economic front, we still have room for improvement -- inflation remains short of the Fed's mark, though the central bank officially ended quantitative easing in October -- but things are looking up, especially regarding employment. November marked the 50th straight month of job growth, and the unemployment rate sits at 5.8%. In fact, the U.S. labor market is on pace for its best year since 1999, and the Federal Reserve expects the economy to continue growing at "a moderate pace."

3. Women Make History

Speaking of the Fed, Janet Yellen made history in early January, taking over for Ben Bernanke as the head of the central bank. Among other women making strides, Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) is charting decade-plus highs under the guidance of CEO Marissa Mayer, Pakistan's Malala Yousafzai was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize at 17 -- the youngest recipient ever -- and Mo'ne Davis threw a shutout in the Little League World Series.

Women in business also weren't deterred by Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) CEO Satya Nadella's gaffe in October, where he advised trusting in "karma" instead of asking for a raise (he later recanted). The feminist revival was also evident at Walt Disney Co (NYSE:DIS), as female-bond-driven Frozen became the highest-grossing animated movie of all time, and was the top-selling album on Apple Inc.'s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iTunes.

Beyonce, meanwhile, became the top-earning woman in music after dropping a surprise blockbuster album (ahem, while her sister dropped Jay-Z in an elevator). Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, Meghan Trainor, and Iggy Azalea's proverbial stocks skyrocketed, and women dominated the Billboard top five for the first time ever.

4. Drama in Washington

Of course, it wasn't a banner year for all women. General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) CEO Mary Barra breached the "glass ceiling" (or the "steel ceiling," according to Hillary Clinton) only to be met by a stone-faced Congress. The newly appointed CEO testified on Capitol Hill several times regarding the company's now-notorious string of recalls. Kathleen Sebelius also had a rough year, stepping down as the health and human services secretary after a much-maligned, glitchy Healthcare.gov rollout.

The "Obamacare" website -- the butt of many a "Saturday Night Live" spoof -- likely contributed to the downfall of Democrats in D.C. In November, Republicans swept the floor in midterm elections, and hopes of a more pro-business atmosphere gave stocks a lift. In response, President Barack Obama went rogue and signed a highly debated executive order on immigration.

5. Ebola Fears Spike

Obama also made history by appointing an "Ebola czar" -- Ron Klain -- in mid-October, at the height of the Ebola crisis. The first confirmed case of Ebola hit the wires on Oct. 1, and the residual fears translated into a boon for drugmakers like Tekmira Pharmaceuticals Corporation (NASDAQ:TKMR) and hazmat suit makers like Lakeland Industries, Inc. (NASDAQ:LAKE).

6. Turmoil Abroad

While residents of West Africa were fighting the deadly virus -- and, for a group of 275 Nigerian schoolgirls, fighting Boko Haram militants -- those in Eastern Europe and the Middle East were just fighting. Russia voted to annex Crimea from Ukraine in mid-March, prompting conflict between the countries -- and subsequent economic sanctions from and passive-aggressive jabs at the West. Russian separatists were also accused of shooting down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 over eastern Ukraine in mid-July, just months after Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 disappeared on its way to Beijing.

The deaths of three Israeli youths -- attributed to members of Hamas -- over the summer opened old wounds in Gaza. And amid all the Ice Bucket Challenges -- which reportedly raised over $100 million for Lou Gehrig's Disease -- social media took a dark turn with ISIS's "Message to America," wherein the terrorist group beheaded American journalist James Foley on video.

7. Tensions at Home

Back at home, tensions flared after Michael Brown was shot and killed in Ferguson, Missouri, in early August, and national riots ensued after a grand jury failed to indict Officer Darren Wilson. In the same vein, the police killing of Eric Garner in New York -- which also resulted in no indictment -- fanned the flames earlier this month, and a handful of professional athletes voiced their opinions by donning "I Can't Breathe" t-shirts.

8. Sports Stars Make Headlines

Among them was LeBron "King" James, who was mostly forgiven by jilted Cleveland fans after returning to the Cavaliers from the Miami Heat. Meanwhile, Yankees great and future Hall of Famer Derek Jeter said farewell to great reception, and U.S. goalie Tim Howard inked an endorsement deal with Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE) -- and lit up the Twitter-sphere -- after notching 16 saves in a heartbreaking World Cup loss to Belgium (Germany went on to win, eliminating host country Brazil).

In less encouraging sports news, incidents of domestic violence -- and more unfortunate elevator footage -- had the NFL questioning its policies, and prompted suspensions of high-profile running backs Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson. Furthermore, Bob Costas contracted the most public case of pinkeye ever, nearly overshadowing the Sochi Winter Olympics.

9. Breakups and Breakdowns

Costas may one day support the European Union's decision in May to uphold the "right to be forgotten," much to Google Inc's (NASDAQ:GOOGL) dismay. The same could be said for activist investor Bill Ackman, whose much-hyped presentation -- which promised to reveal Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) as a pyramid scheme -- sent the stock skyrocketing in July.

Fellow elite investor Bill Gross also made headlines after jumping the Pimco ship for Janus Capital Group Inc (NYSE:JNS) in late September. Other notable splits include Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ), which in October said it'd divide and conquer, and later that month Procter & Gamble Co (NYSE:PG) announced it would spin off Duracell.

Also left at the altar in 2014 was Britain's Shire PLC (ADR) by AbbVie Inc (NYSE:ABBV), as fresh regulations on tax inversions prompted the American drugmaker to back out of the deal. Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) also abandoned a bid for AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (NYSE:AZN), and Hasbro, Inc. (NASDAQ:HAS) fell out of love with DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc (NASDAQ:DWA).

A handful of companies also filed for bankruptcy, including Bitcoin bigwig Mt. Gox and sapphire glass supplier GT Advanced Technologies Inc.

10. Product Launches

The latter filed in early October after getting jilted by AAPL, which unveiled two versions of the iPhone 6 and a new "smart watch" -- and debuted Apple Pay -- in the fourth quarter. Not to be outdone, rival BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) revealed its Passport just a few weeks later.

11. Weddings and Engagements

But not all fell apart on the M&A front this year. Among some of the noteworthy partnerships: Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) bought WhatsApp for a whopping $19.4 billion; Halliburton Company (NYSE:HAL) proposed to Baker Hughes Incorporated (NYSE:BHI); and Burger King Worldwide Inc (NYSE:BKW) set a date with Tim Hortons Inc. (USA) (NYSE:THI) just months after fast food chains were plagued by China's "tainted meat scandal." Outside of corporate America, "Kimye" and "Brangelina" tied the knot, as well as same-sex couples in 35 states.

12. Big-Time Hacks

However, those who bought wedding gifts at Nieman Marcus might've had their credit and debit card information stolen. In retrospect, the Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT) hack late last year was ominous, as blue chips Home Depot Inc (NYSE:HD) and JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM), as well as Sony Corp (ADR) (NYSE:SNE), were among the companies hit by cyberattacks.

13. IPO Boom

One of the biggest stories of the year, however, was the record-breaking IPO of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA) in mid-September, with the Chinese e-commerce concern raising roughly $25 billion. Tech companies overall -- including Wall Street freshman GoPro Inc (NASDAQ:GPRO), which debuted in early April -- raised nearly $39 billion year-to-date, the most since the dot-com boom, according to Dealogic.

14. Oil Tanks

As we near the end of the year, commodities stocks are making headlines. Crude oil prices are plumbing five-year lows, which have weighed on big-cap oil-and-gas stocks like Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX), while bolstering fuel-dependent Southwest Airlines Co (NYSE:LUV) and its airline peers.

Thanks for joining us on our stroll down memory lane. We hope your 2015 is even better than 2014-- your trades profitable, your home life full of cheer, and your elevator rides uneventful.

Published on Feb 27, 2015 at 2:46 PM
Updated on Jul 9, 2020 at 1:23 PM
  • General

Just a couple days ago, everything was normal. People went on walks. Kids went to school. Adults went to work. But now, things are different, and it's unlikely they'll ever be the same.

The world is no stranger to division. Just here in America, we've seen all sorts of fierce rivalries: Republicans vs. Democrats; Team Edward vs. Team Jacob; Mayonnaise vs. Miracle Whip; Batman fans vs. Superman fans; The Coca Cola Co (NYSE:KO) vs. PepsiCo, Inc. (NYSE:PEP); Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) vs. BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (and everyone). But never before has this country -- this entire planet -- been so split, so polarized and confused.

All over a dress.

This picture has gone viral, as people cannot seem to figure out what color it is. Many see it as blue and black, while others see it as white or gold or I don't know what -- I'm a part of the Blue Dress Group.

The picture has sparked confusion beyond anything anyone has ever seen. Last night, at four in the morning, my girlfriend shook me out of my slumber and shoved her phone in my face. "What color is this dress?" she asked me. I told her it was unequivocally blue. I am now searching for another place to live, and a new girlfriend.

It's clear that people who see the dress as different colors cannot co-exist. For, if they can't agree on the color of a wardrobe, what hope do they have of ever accomplishing anything else? They'll spend all day, holding up random objects, asking each other, "What color is this!? Is this blue or gold?"

There have even been reports of people looking at the picture, and seeing it as blue, and looking back later, and seeing it as white or gold. Which makes one wonder: where did this dress come from? Is this all a conspiracy? If so, how high up does it go?

Apparently, as we speak, the populations of all major U.S. cities are being evacuated and separated based on what color they think the dress is. The divide between Blue Dress Group and Gold/White Dress Group is too deep, and irreparable. Special fenced-in areas are being set up for each group. Issues have arisen, however, since colored flags were used to designate each area, and citizens could not agree on which area belonged to which group. Things have gotten so bad, the world's brightest minds have put all else aside just to get to the bottom of this mystery.

Of course, amazingly, the stock market has remained open amid of all this. We're still awaiting word from President Obama.

Personally, I don't know where to go next. My entire family belongs to the Gold/White Group, and I'm unsure if I'll ever see them again. I just hope someone out there can provide answers, and start to piece together the world I once loved.

Luckily, we were given a response by the person who would know best. Finally, it appears as though we can have some clarity. I'm glad she's in my group.

Published on Apr 14, 2016 at 9:47 AM
Updated on Jul 9, 2020 at 1:22 PM
  • Analyst Downgrades
Analysts are weighing in on fertilizer firm Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan (USA) (NYSE:POT), software stock Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC), and data storage dynamo Western Digital Corp (NASDAQ:WDC). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes on POT, SYMC, and WDC.

  • POT saw its rating cut to "underperform" from "market perform" at Cowen, which also dropped its price target to $14. This negativity is par for the course, as 13 of 18 analysts have handed out "hold" or worse recommendations on the stock. Who can really blame them? Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan has been a dismal long-term performer, losing roughly half of its value year-over-year to trade at $16.28, including today's 2.3% dip.
  • Evercore ISI initiated coverage on SYMC with a "sell" rating and $14 price target. Likewise, Barclays slashed its price target to $18 from $22. The collective skepticism has Symantec Corporation down 1.9% this morning at $17.82, but it's still advanced 21% since hitting an annual low of $14.74 in late January. Options traders aren't buying the hype, though. SYMC's 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) put/call volume ratio of 6.28 ranks in the bearishly skewed 92nd percentile of its annual range.
  • WDC saw its price target lowered to $60 from $70 at Craig-Hallum, due to an ominous outlook from this sector peer. The bearish note has the stock 7.7% lower out of the gate at $41.34. This is more of the same for Western Digital Corp, which is down 31% on a year-to-date basis. Amid these struggles, short sellers have been piling on. During the last two reporting periods, short interest on WDC spiked close to 80%, and now 13.4% of its float is sold short -- which would take about one week to cover, at the stock's typical trading levels.
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Published on Mar 11, 2016 at 10:06 AM
Updated on Jul 9, 2020 at 1:21 PM
  • Analyst Downgrades
Analysts are weighing in on fertilizer producer Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan (USA) (NYSE:POT), steel stock AK Steel Holding Corporation (NYSE:AKS), and solar energy issue Sunrun Inc (NASDAQ:RUN). Here's a quick roundup of today's bearish brokerage notes on POT, AKS, and RUN.

  • POT is up 1.2% at $18.43, despite a downgrade to "underweight" at Atlantic Equities. The shares are on the mend after hitting an eight-year low of $14.64 in late January, and have now brought their year-to-date lead to 7.5%, toppling their 120-day moving average earlier this week for the first time in over a year. Still, 67% of analysts rate Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan (USA) a "hold" or worse, and option traders don't seem to be buying the stock's rebound just yet, either. POT's 50-day put/call volume ratio on the International Securities Exchange (ISE). Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) is still higher than 76% of the past year's readings, at 0.55.
  • Credit Suisse began coverage on AKS with a bearish "underperform" rating and $2 price target, despite the steel sector's recent rally, which has AKS ahead 78.8% in 2016. AK Steel Holding Corporation is 3.6% lower at $4.00 today, but has more than doubled in value since its January all-time low of $1.63, and recently blew through its 50-week moving average for the first time in over a year. But while analysts are still rather pessimistic, near-term option traders may be turning a bullish eye on AKS. The stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.45 is lower than 98% of all readings in the last year, showing a near call-skewed extreme among options expiring in the next three months.
  • After last night's earnings report and lackluster growth forecast, Credit Suisse cut its price target on RUN to $21 from $35 -- still a 243% premium over Sunrun Inc's current value. The stock has plummeted 14.4% to $6.12 today, and while a recent crop of short sellers may be cheering, option traders have been significantly call-heavy lately. At the ISE, CBOE, and PHLX, traders have bought to open 9.23 RUN calls for each put during the past two weeks.
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Published on Jul 9, 2020 at 12:14 PM
  • Midday Market Check

After beginning the day on a quiet note, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) suffered a sudden and steep plummet, giving back over 460 points by midday. The S&P 500 (SPX) and Nasdaq Composite (NDX) both plunged back into the red, too, with the latter erasing the rise that put the index on track for yet another record close. A disappointing earnings report from Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) is discouraging some on Wall Street, while several FAANG names, including Apple (AAPL) are also taking a breather. 

Meanwhile, a record spike in coronavirus-related hospitalizations as well as a record spike in deaths is also shaking up traders. This news is tanking oil, too, as the spike in infections capped signs of demand recovery. At last check, crude for August delivery is down 3.1% at $39.65 per barrel.

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

  • Microsoft stock notched another record high.
  • Alibaba stock extended yesterday's all-time peak.
  • Plus, GLUU's call volume is astounding; CleanSpark's $2.9 million grant; and MHK grapples with fraud allegations.

Midday Market Stats July 9

Glu Mobile Inc. (NASDAQ:GLUU) is seeing a substantial amount of activity in its options pits today, with 51,000 calls crossing the tape so far -- 20 times intraday average -- compared to just 567 puts. The most popular by far is the July 10 call, followed by the 11 call from the same series, with new positions being opened at the former. At last check, the stock is up 5.2% at $10.26 and touched a 15-month high of $10.77 earlier today. 

CleanSpark Inc (NASDAQ:CLSK) is one of the best performers on the Nasdaq after the diversified software and services company was awarded a $2.9 million grant from the California Energy Commission which will be deployed over the next 30 months. CLSK is up 20.5% at $3.74 at last check, and now boasts a three-month rise of 103.5%. Plus, the stock is set to close above its 150-day moving average for the first time in over a year.  

One of the worst performers on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) is Mohawk Industries, Inc. (NYSE:MHK), after Deutsche Bank said fraud allegations could have a big impact on the stock if witnesses are able to corroborate. Specifically, a previous logistics business analyst at MHK alleged fictitious sales. Now down 15% at $77.61, Mohawk stock is set to close back below former support at its 80-day moving average for the first time in over a month. For the year, the stock is down 42.7%. 

MHK Chart July 9

Published on Jul 9, 2020 at 12:01 PM
  • Buzz Stocks
  • Analyst Update

Published on Jun 12, 2015 at 9:23 AM
Updated on Jul 9, 2020 at 11:59 AM
  • Analyst Upgrades

Analysts are weighing in today on cloud computing stock Citrix Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CTXS), breakfast fanatic Bob Evans Farms Inc (NASDAQ:BOBE), and drink producer Monster Beverage Corp (NASDAQ:MNST). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes on CTXS, BOBE, and MNST.

  • Building off its big gains from yesterday, CTXS is 1.6% higher in electronic trading after a round of bullish analyst attention. Notably, Needham and BofA-Merrill Lynch each raised their outlook to "buy," with the latter setting its price target at $82 -- territory the stock hasn't explored since late 2012. Option traders are surely pleased, as 1.43 calls have been bought to open for each put during the past 10 sessions at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX). As of its close yesterday at $70.39, Citrix Systems, Inc. has added over 10% in 2015.

  • BOBE is benefiting this morning from an upgrade to "buy" from "hold" -- as well as a price-target hike to $57 from $50 -- at Miller Tabak, with the shares pointed 5.4% higher ahead of the open. This comes after the company yesterday announced its plans to consider transaction strategies for its restaurant properties. The stock could use a pick-me-up, as it's been mostly churning between $43 and $47 since its gigantic bear gap in early March. Many traders are betting against an upside move. Specifically, short interest increased nearly 13% during the last two reporting periods, and now accounts for 12.4% of Bob Evans Farms Inc's float. At typical daily volumes, it would take bears over seven sessions to repurchase their shorted shares. BOBE settled yesterday at $46.10. Looking ahead, the company will report earnings next Tuesday evening.

  • UBS this morning raised its assessment on MNST to "buy" from "neutral," and bumped its price target to $154 from $148, representing all-time highs for the stock. Considering the security's dominant technical performance (up over 80% in the past year to trade at $127.17), more bullish notes may be on the way. Of the 14 covering brokerage firms, eight rate Monster Beverage Corp a "hold," with the remaining six sporting "buy" or better endorsements. Also, there's a chance for a sentiment shift among option traders to spark the shares. MNST's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) comes in at 1.30 -- just 8 percentage points from an annual put-skewed extreme. Ahead of the open, the shares are 1.4% higher.
Published on Jun 17, 2015 at 9:15 AM
Updated on Jul 9, 2020 at 11:58 AM
  • Buzz Stocks

U.S. stocks are poised to open higher, ahead of the Fed's highly anticipated policy statement this afternoon. In company news, today's stocks to watch include drugmakers Kythera Biopharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:KYTH) and Synergy Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:SGYP), as well as Chinese Internet firm Qihoo 360 Technology Co Ltd (NYSE:QIHU)

  • KYTH is set to surge 22.5% at the open -- and notch a record high -- after the company agreed to be acquired by Allergan PLC (NYSE:AGN) for upwards of $2.1 billion in cash and stock, or $75 per share. The per-share purchase price represents a 23.5% premium to Kythera Biopharmaceuticals Inc's close at $60.72 yesterday. This upward momentum is more of the same for a stock that's already rallied 75% year-to-date -- and hit an all-time peak of $61.97 on Tuesday. Short sellers are likely feeling the heat this morning, as 27.7% of KYTH's float is sold short -- representing more than 12 days' worth of trading, at typical volumes.

  • SGYP is up more than 53% in electronic trading, after the firm released encouraging results from a late-stage trial on its idiopathic constipation drug. The company intends to apply for regulatory approval in the fourth quarter. As of yesterday's close at $4.64, Synergy Pharmaceuticals Inc was 52% higher in 2015, and this morning's expected bull gap should put it in territory not explored since April 2013. Despite these impressive gains, short-term options traders have rarely been more put-skewed toward the equity. SGYP's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.78 ranks in the 99th percentile of its annual range.

  • Finally, QIHU received a buyout offer from a Chinese consortium led by billionaire CEO Hongyi Zhou, valuing the company at $77 per American depositary share (ADR) -- or a 16.6% mark-up to yesterday's close at $66.05. As such, the stock is poised to jump 10% at the open, adding to its 15.4% advance since the year began. This is excellent news for recent call buyers at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX). Qihoo 360 Technology Co Ltd's 10-day call/put volume ratio across that trio of exchanges is 8.74 -- an annual high.

Published on Jun 12, 2020 at 2:33 PM
Updated on Jul 9, 2020 at 11:57 AM
  • 5-Minute Market Rundown

The week started out promising for the stock market, as reopening optimism permeated throughout Wall Street -- despite the official announcement of a U.S. recession entered in February. However, airline stocks were a good indicator for this volatile stretch, weighing heavily on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) in the middle of the week, though pushing the benchmarks upwards on Monday and Friday. The S&P 500 Index (SPX) struggled for traction alongside the blue-chip index, with travel stocks joining the roller-coaster. The real star of the week was the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC), after hitting a record high and closing above 10,000 for the first time ever on Wednesday, before promptly snapping its four-day win streak on Thursday as all three major indexes landed their worst day since mid-March. With plenty to unpack, including the Federal Reserve’s update, and a spike in coronavirus cases, all three benchmarks remain wary of the recent rally amid sharp weekly losses. 

Tech a Safe Bet Amid Renewed Coronavirus Concerns

The tech sector played a fundamental role in the Nasdaq's record-setting week, building on its breakneck rally, as various high-profile names such as FAANG stock Facebook (FB) and cloud stock Adobe Systems (ADBE) nab new record highs. It wasn't all sunny to start though, with Apple (AAPL) taking a breather from its own highs and Amazon.com (AMZN) facing pressure from the European Union (EU). Nevertheless, Nasdaq quickly marched forward, completing its V-bottom from its early-March lows.

Companies Navigate Sales and Reopenings

With businesses reopening country-wide, many that haven't already made changes are mapping out their best plan of action. Expanding its initiatives to better deal with the impact, Party City (PRTY), is shaking off quarterly earnings and revenue losses. As companies wrestle with their lower-than-expected quarterly reports during this time, Children's Place (PLCE) was also one of many to pull its full-year guidance Meanwhile,  furloughed employees returned to Best Buy (BBY), which gave the stock a boost. Elsewhere, Transocean (RIG) and Occidental Petroleum (OXY), hit especially hard by the pandemic along with the  oil and gas sector attempted rebounds

Quiet Week Ahead as Speculation Ensues

The economic calendar is looking somewhat bare next week, though investors will have their eyes on Thursday's weekly employment update, as well as retail data earlier in the week -- two indicators that have helped gauge the economic environment as lockdown measures continue to ease in the U.S. Meanwhile, consider this options strategy that limits market exposure amid the recent volatile stretch.

Published on May 22, 2015 at 9:06 AM
Updated on Jul 9, 2020 at 11:56 AM
  • Analyst Upgrades

Analysts are weighing in today on TurboTax parent Intuit Inc. (NASDAQ:INTU), shoe seller Foot Locker, Inc. (NYSE:FL), and discount retailer Ross Stores, Inc. (NASDAQ:ROST). Here's a quick roundup of today's bullish brokerage notes on INTU, FL, and ROST.

  • INTU is getting some positive attention this morning, following last night's earnings beat and hiked sales guidance. Specifically, no fewer than six brokerage firms raised their price targets on the stock, with both Jefferies and UBS setting the bar at $120. Additional price-target hikes could be in line, considering Intuit Inc.'s average 12-month price target of $98.38 sits at a discount to last night's close at $104.16. Potential upgrades are also possible, as eight analysts consider INTU a "hold" or worse, versus five "buy" or better recommendations. Technically speaking, the shares hit a record high of $104.74 yesterday, and could take out that milestone this morning -- perched 0.8% higher ahead of the open.

  • FL is also feeling the love after reporting better-than-expected first-quarter results and a nearly 8% rise in same-store sales. Deutsche Bank upped its price target on the stock to $71 from $69, and reiterated its "buy" opinion. In addition, the firm said unwarranted concerns about a slowdown in sneaker sales offer an opportunity to own FL at a discount, and predicted double-digit long-term earnings growth for the retailer. On the charts, Foot Locker, Inc. has been a long-term outperformer, rallying nearly 14% year-to-date to rest at $64, and touching a record high of $64.38 yesterday -- a mark that could get topped this morning, with the shares pointed up 2.8% in electronic trading. Nevertheless, traders at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) have expressed reservations. FL's 10-day put/call volume ratio across those exchanges is 2.52, which ranks in the 95th percentile of its annual range.

  • ROST is getting showered with positive attention, too, following a successful turn in the earnings confessional and an upwardly revised full-year outlook. Specifically, UBS and Jefferies raised their respective price targets to $103 and $102 -- though both are a hair's breadth from Thursday's close at $101.55. It's been a sensational year for Ross Stores, Inc., which has soared 49% year-over-year -- despite spending most of the past three months churning in the $100-$108 range. Should the stock break out on the aforementioned developments, additional bullish brokerage notes are a possibility. Twelve of 19 analysts still consider ROST a tepid "hold," and its average 12-month price target of $106.50 stands at a slim 5% premium to current trading levels.

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