Buzz Stocks: Alibaba, Chevron, and Delta Air Lines

Today's stocks to watch in the news include BABA, CVX, and DAL

Nov 28, 2014 at 9:08 AM
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Futures are sticking close to breakeven this morning, after the major market indexes notched notable milestones on Wednesday. Among specific equities in focus are China-based e-commerce concern Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA), oil-and-gas firm Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX), and airline issue Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE:DAL).

  • BABA has thrown its hat into the Internet TV ring. The new product -- which launched in China on Wednesday -- is available in three sizes, and comes equipped with entertainment and shopping components. Since going public in late September, shares of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd have soared 21.5% to their current perch at $112.67, so it's no surprise to see sentiment tilted toward the bullish side. In the options arena, speculators at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) have bought to open 2.96 calls for every put over the past 10 sessions. Elsewhere, all 22 analysts covering the shares maintain a "buy" or better rating.

  • CVX is bracing for a 4% drop right out of the gate, as traders react to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries' (OPEC) decision to not reduce its crude oil output. It's been a tough ride for the energy sector in recent months, and Chevron Corporation is no exception -- with the shares off almost 15% from their late July record high of $135.10 to trade at $115.11. Traders are keeping the faith, however, as evidenced by the equity's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX call/put volume ratio of 1.70, which ranks in the bullishly skewed 62nd percentile of its annual range. Additionally, less than 1% of the stock's float is sold short, and it would take roughly two sessions to cover these bearish bets, at CVX's average daily pace of trading.

  • Poised to benefit from the plunge in oil prices is DAL, with the shares up roughly 5% ahead of the bell. Today's projected price movement only highlights Delta Air Lines, Inc.'s technical tenacity, with the shares 61% higher year-to-date. What's more, the equity tagged a record peak of $45.21 as recently as Nov. 18, and closed Wednesday just 2.1% below this notable milestone, at $44.24 -- meaning a fresh all-time peak could be on today's agenda. While all 11 analysts covering the equity maintain a "buy" or better rating, sentiment in the options pits has a more skeptical tone. Specifically, DAL's 50-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 0.64 ranks just 11 percentage points from an annual bearish peak. An unwinding of these pessimistic positions in the face of DAL's uptrend could help propel the shares higher.

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