The Drug Stock Staring At Its Worst Day in Years; TWTR Tanks

Verizon shares are moving higher after a revenue beat

Managing Editor
Jul 27, 2017 at 10:07 AM
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U.S. stocks are at record highs once again this morning, boosted by the latest batch of big-cap earnings. Among specific equities making big moves after earnings are social media company Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) and Dow stock Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), while drugmaker AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (NYSE:AZN) is buzzing after its latest drug study. Here's a quick look at how shares of TWTR, VZ, and AZN are trading today.

Subpar User Growth Sends Twitter Stock Tumbling

Twitter stock is down 13.2% to trade at $17.03, after the social media giant reported  flat user growth for the second quarter. (On the other side of the aisle, Facebook stock is soaring after earnings.) Twitter stock is no stranger to ugly earnings reactions, and the drop today has the shares testing their 80-day moving average. 

The downbeat earnings should only add more fuel for TWTR stock skeptics. The stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) ranks in the 89th percentile of its annual range, suggesting short-term option players have rarely favored puts over calls by a wider margin during the past year 

Revenue Beat Fuels Verizon Stock's Rally

Verizon stock is up 6.5% to trade at $47.27, after the communications giant reported quarterly revenue that exceeded estimates. It's been a sluggish year for VZ shares, which are down 13% year-to-date, and touched an annual low of $42.80 on July 11. The rally today sends the shares past their 60-day moving average, which has acted as stiff resistance since late January.

Despite the stock's recent struggles, investors have been favoring calls over puts in the options pits. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX),VZ has racked up a 50-day call/put volume ratio of 2.79, which ranks 5 percentage points from an annual high.

AZN Stock Pummeled After Lung Cancer Study Failure

AstraZeneca stock is down 15% to trade at $28.69 -- set for its worst percentage loss since 2002 -- after the drug company's two injectable lung cancer therapies failed to help patients in its highly anticipated MYSTIC study. The results concluded that the two drugs of durvalumab and tremelimumab were no more effective than chemotherapy. AZN shares are now exploring levels not seen since February. 

In the options pits, recent buyers are likely cheering AstraZeneca's decline. According to ISE/CBOE/PHLX data, AZN sports a 10-day put/call volume ratio of 8.49 -- in the 99th percentile of its annual range. In other words, AZN options traders have been buying to open puts over calls at a near annual-high clip in the past two weeks.


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