Halliburton Stock Brushing Off Earnings, Revenue Beat

Halliburton's margins in its completions and productions unit came in lower than expected

Digital Content Manager
Jan 24, 2022 at 9:56 AM
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The shares of Halliburton Company (NYSE:HAL) are down 2.2% at $26.94 this morning, even after the company shared a top- and bottom- line beat for its fourth quarter, which helped lift its quarterly dividend by 167%. HAL added that it doubled its quarterly profit from last year due to oil's continued recovery from its pandemic-era lows. While these results were mostly positive, Halliburton's margins in its completions and productions unit came in lower than expected. 

A short-term drop may have already been in the cards for the equity,  which sports a 14-day Relative Strength Index (RSI) of 73, putting it just on the cusp of "overbought" territory. In fact, the stock just touched a two-year high of $29.20 on Jan. 18, though it's been on a journey downward since. The security is headed for its fifth-straight daily loss today, which would mark its longest losing streak since November. The stock is still up roughly 41% year-over-year, however. 

Analysts have silently digested Halliburton's earnings report, but sentiment heading into today was sunny. Of the 18 analysts in coverage, 16 called HAL a "buy" or better, with nary a "sell" to be seen. Plus, the 12-month consensus price target of $30.32 is a 10.1% premium to Friday evening's close. 

Options traders have taken a much more pessimistic stance. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), it looks like 1.53 puts have been picked up for every call during the past two weeks -- a ratio that stands in the 97th percentile of its 12-month range. This implies long puts are much more popular than usual. 

In that same vein, the equity's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 1.36 stands higher than 99% of readings from the past year. In other words, short-term options players have rarely been more put-biased. 


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