Buzz Stocks: Apple Inc., Aralez Pharmaceuticals Inc, and Summit Therapeutics PLC (ADR)

Today's stocks to watch in the news include Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Aralez Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:ARLZ), and Summit Therapeutics PLC (ADR) (NASDAQ:SMMT)

Oct 4, 2016 at 9:59 AM
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U.S. stocks are sitting in positive territory so far today, as domestic markets look to follow their European counterparts higher. Among specific equities in focus are tech giant Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), as well as biotechs Aralez Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:ARLZ), and Summit Therapeutics PLC (ADR) (NASDAQ:SMMT).

  • AAPL is up 1.4% at $114.11, following the launch of its Apple Pay service in Russia, making Russia the 10th country to have access to the new mobile payment platform. AAPL currently sits up 8.4% so far in 2016, and in the option pits, calls have been hot over the last 10 weeks, with AAPL's 50-day call/put volume ratio at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) of 1.78 sitting in the top 84% of all readings from the past 12 months. Of course, now looks like a great time to purchase near-term options, with Apple Inc.'s Schaeffer's Volatility Index (SVI) of 18% sitting lower than 93% of all other readings from the past year, suggesting option players are pricing in relatively minimal volatility expectations, even though the tech stock's Schaeffer's Volatility Scorecard (SVS) of 97 sits 3 points from an annual peak, showing that AAPL has tended to exceed volatility expectations over the past year.

  • ARLZ is popping today, currently up 12.6% at $5.68, after news that the biotech will acquire the U.S. rights to AstraZeneca plc's (ADR) (NYSE:AZN) beta-blocker for $175 million, plus royalties and up to an additional $48 million of milestone payments. Even with this pop, however, ARLZ is still down 4% so far in 2016, although the shares have been enjoying support from their 200-day moving average since mid-August. There's likely some short sellers kicking rocks after this news, however, with Aralez Pharmaceutical Inc's short interest up 60% in the last two reporting periods, now accounting for 8.8% of ARLZ's float.
  • SMMT is soaring this morning, currently up 113.1% at $18.43, after entering into a licensing agreement with Sarepta Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:SRPT) for $40 million, plus up to an additional $522 million and royalties. The agreement gives SRPT European rights to SMMT's utrophin modulator pipeline, and its lead Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) drug, ezutromid. Today's move puts SMMT up 179% for the year, and at a new all-time high. Although Summit Therapeutics PLC (ADR) short interest is down 0.9% over the last reporting period, SMMT's shorted shares would take nearly a week to cover, at SMMT's average daily volume.

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