Buzz Stocks: Apple Inc., Biogen Inc., and Starbucks Corporation

Today's stocks to watch in the news include Apple Inc. (AAPL), Biogen Inc (BIIB), and Starbucks Corporation (SBUX)

Apr 24, 2015 at 9:24 AM
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The major market indexes appear ready to extend yesterday's gains, as the Nasdaq Composite (COMP) is pointed towards record highs. Furthermore, tech titan Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is releasing its highly anticipated Apple Watch today, and several notable names have reported earnings, including biotech firm Biogen Inc (NASDAQ:BIIB) and coffee king Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX).
 
  • The shares of AAPL are pointed 0.6% higher in electronic trading, as the company rolls out the global launch of its new Apple Watch. However, the company is forgoing the long lines and pandemonium that typically accompany its product releases by offering the gadget exclusively through online ordering and select boutiques throughout the U.S. Technically speaking, Apple Inc. has been a beast, with the shares up nearly 60% year-over-year to close yesterday at $129.67. Still, traders have been picking up puts at a faster-than-usual clip ahead of Monday's turn in the earnings confessional, as AAPL's 50-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) put/call volume ratio of 0.47 ranks in the 79th percentile of its annual range. Elsewhere, the brokerage bunch is still optimistic on the stock, as over two-thirds of covering analysts rate it a "buy" or "strong buy."
  • On the other hand, the shares of BIIB are pointed 3.5% lower ahead of the bell, after the firm posted disappointing quarterly profit and revenue figures, as well as lagging sales of its multiple sclerosis drug Tecfidera. On the charts, Biogen Inc is down about 10% since hitting an all-time high of $480.18 on March 20, to finish Thursday at $430.28. The stock is still in favor with the brokerage bunch, though, as 80% of covering analysts rate it a "buy" or "strong buy," with the remaining 20% doling out lukewarm "hold" ratings.
  • SBUX released solid fiscal second-quarter earnings and forecast a large jump in global comps, sending the shares 4.3% higher in pre-market trading. In fact, CEO Howard Schultz called it the "strongest non-holiday quarter in our over 20-year public life," and told CNBC the company is "in conversation with Apple on a number of issues." Looking back, Starbucks Corporation has been a technical standout, with the shares up 20.5% year-to-date to hit $49.43. What's more, the stock touched an all-time high of $49.70 just yesterday, and is poised to topple that level out of the gate today. Puts have been more prominent than usual, though, as SBUX's 50-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 0.62 is higher than 64% of all similar readings from the past year.   
 

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