Buzz Stocks: Target Corporation, Mazor Robotics Ltd - ADR, and Agios Pharmaceuticals Inc

Today's stocks to watch include Target Corporation (TGT), Mazor Robotics Ltd - ADR (MZOR), and Agios Pharmaceuticals Inc (AGIO)

May 18, 2016 at 11:07 AM
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U.S. stocks have reversed early losses ahead of the Federal Open Market Committee's (FOMC) meeting minutes release. Among equities in focus today are retailer Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT), medical device maker Mazor Robotics Ltd – ADR (NASDAQ:MZOR), and biopharmaceutical stock Agios Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:AGIO).

  • TGT is down 9.3% at $66.84 -- and just touched an annual low of $66.25 -- after announcing lackluster quarterly sales, making TGT the latest retailer to take a hit in the earnings confessional. Target Corporation options traders have grown increasingly bearish on the stock, with TGT's 50-day put/call volume ratio of 1.25 at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) sitting in the 99th percentile of its annual range. Likewise, TGT's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 1.33 is higher than 99% of all other readings from the past year, showing near-term traders have rarely been more put-biased within the past 12 months.

  • MZOR is up 23.7% at $13.15, after hitting a new year-to-date high of $13.75, following news that Medtronic PLC (NYSE:MDT) is investing in the company. MZOR CEO Ori Hadomi stated that he believes the partnership "will make Mazor surgical robot technologies the standard of care in spinal surgeries". Plenty of traders are likely kicking rocks today, with short interest on MZOR up 8.8% over the last two reporting periods, and shorted shares accounting for 5.2% of the stock's float -- an amount that would take traders 13.2 days, at Mazor Robotoics Ltd - ADR's normal daily volume, to cover.

  • AGIO said Celgene Corporation (NASDAQ:CELG) will hand it $200 million in funding to develop immune-oncology technologies over the next four years, in exchange for purchasing options at certain stages in new drug developments, a deal similar to others CELG has made in the past. AGIO initially rallied on the news, but has since dropped 0.7% to $50.90. Agios Pharmaceuticals Inc shares ran into a wall at their 160-day moving average, which halted the equity's rally attempt in mid-April. Short sellers are likely breathing a sigh of relief, with over 20.5% of the stock's float short sold. It would take traders over two weeks, at AGIO's average daily volume, to cover all of the shorted shares. 

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