2 Stocks at Record Highs After Earnings

CAT stock opened at a record high after blowout third-quarter results

Managing Editor
Oct 24, 2017 at 10:49 AM
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U.S. stocks are trading higher this morning after a slew of positive third-quarter earnings were released before the bell. Among the stocks making moves this morning are construction and mining equipment manufacturer Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT), automobile designer and producer General Motors Company (NYSE:GM), and technology powerhouse Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). Here's a closer look at what's moving shares of CAT, GM, and AAPL.

CAT Opens the Day at Record High

Caterpillar stock has gapped higher after reporting better-than-expected third-quarter earnings -- and hiking its full-year forecast -- before today's bell. At last check, the stock was up 6.1% at $139.69, after opening the day at a record high of $140.44. Year-over-year, CAT has gained 65.4%.

Ahead of Caterpillar's earnings report, option traders were leaning towards bullish bets. Data from the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) shows CAT with a 10-day call/put volume ratio of 1.07, which ranks in the 86th percentile of its annual range. This suggests that options traders bought to open calls over puts at a faster-than-usual clip during the past two weeks.

General Motors Hits Fresh High After Earnings Beat

Shares of General Motors are trading higher after the automobile stock reported a third-quarter earnings beat. Last seen up 2.8% at $46.39, GM earlier touched a new record high of $46.76. GM stock has now rallied upwards of 30% in just the last two months.

Data from the ISE, CBOE, and PHLX shows GM carrying a 50-day call/put volume ratio of 2.32, which ranks in the 99th percentile of its annual range -- suggesting near-peak levels of call buying relative to puts during the past 10 weeks. In the weekly 10/27 options series, GM speculators have honed in on the 46-strike call, where there are 7,308 contracts in residence.

Apple in Focus on New iPhone Concerns

Apple stock is back in the headlines this morning, after The Nikkei reported that initial iPhone X shipments could total only 20 million units -- roughly half the original estimate. Thanks to the bullish mood on Wall Street today, AAPL stock has still managed to pick up 0.7% to trade at $157.25, though the stock remains firmly pinned below recent resistance at its 40-day moving average.

Despite AAPL's recent struggles on the charts and iPhone demand concerns, the tech sector giant remains heavily favored among analysts and options traders. Of the 29 brokerage firms following Apple, 23 carry "buy" or "strong buy" recommendations. What's more, the tech stock's ISE/CBOE/PHLX 10-day call/put volume ratio of 2.49 ranks in the bullishly skewed 85th percentile.


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