Buzz Stocks: Alibaba, Inovio, and Precision Castparts

Today's stocks to watch include Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA), Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:INO), and Precision Castparts Corp. (NYSE:PCP)

Aug 10, 2015 at 9:56 AM
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U.S. stocks are moving higher this morning, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average looks to put an end to its recent losing streak. Among the equities in focus are Chinese Internet behemoth Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA), biotech Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:INO), and castings specialist Precision Castparts Corp. (NYSE:PCP).

  • BABA is 1.1% higher this morning at $79.70, after the company invested more than $4 billion to acquire a nearly 20% stake in fellow Chinese retailer Suning Commerce. On the charts, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd has been trending lower for several months now, giving back one-third of its value since hitting an all-time high of $120 in mid-November. Speculators at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) keep scooping up calls over puts, nonetheless. During the past 10 weeks across these exchanges, traders have bought to open two BABA calls for every put. These option traders will be on the edge of their seat this week, as the company is set to unveil earnings Wednesday morning

  • INO is moving higher on a deal of its own this morning, jumping 24.4% to $8.08. The drugmaker sold the rights to an experimental cancer immunotherapy to AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (NYSE:AZN) in a deal worth $27.5 million upfront, and up to $700 million more in future milestone payments. This is a boost the shares desperately need, as Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc has trailed the S&P 500 Index (SPX) by more than 14 percentage points in the past two months. This disappointing price action has brought short sellers to the stock's door. Over 21% of INO's float has been sold short, and it would take nearly three weeks to repurchase all of these shares, at the equity's average daily volume. 

  • PCP, meanwhile, is booming from the biggest deal of them all. The stock is 19.1% higher at $230.90, on news the company is being acquired by Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.A) for $235 per share, or roughly $37 billion -- the latter firm's largest deal ever. This isn't good news for the recent raft of PCP put buyers. Precision Castparts Corp.'s 10-day put/call volume ratio at the ISE, CBOE, and PHLX stands at 1.24, which ranks higher than 80% of comparable readings from the past year. 

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