"Today's action wasn't spurred by any particular drivers,"
observed Schaeffer's Senior Trading Analyst Bryan Sapp. "Volumes
were light, and trading was very muted, which was largely a result
of tomorrow's big Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting and
policy update. What Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke says will likely
cause a big move in stocks, and it's very probable that everyone is
holding tight for the time being." Meanwhile, the
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI)
finished another session in positive territory, and came within
striking distance of its all-time high.
Continue reading for more on today's market, including
- As the FOMC wraps up the first half of its two-day meeting,
Sapp reiterates his expectations for
"some serious volatility"
over the next two sessions.
- In his latest
Chart of the Day
, Schaeffer's Senior Options Strategist Tony Venosa, CMT,
highlights nine reasons why Transocean (
) could be due for a pullback.
- One neutral-to-bullish speculator targeted this
outperforming automobile concern
by utilizing front-month options.
The consumer price index (CPI) advanced in August, Microsoft (
) had good news for shareholders, and Citigroup (
) was hit with a price-target reduction.
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 15,529.73)
spent the entire session in the green, and touched an intraday peak
of 15,555.07 around 1:00 p.m. ET, which was about 103.4 points away
from its all-time high. By the close, the blue-chip barometer pared
some of its earlier gains to finish 35 points, or 0.2%, higher.
) led the Dow's 19 advancers with a gain of 2%, while UnitedHealth
) paced the 11 decliners with a loss of 1.1%.
S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,704.76)
powered north at the start of the session, as well, and traded
sideways for much of the afternoon. By day's end, the SPX added 7.2
points, or 0.4%, to overcome the 1,700 mark. Meanwhile, the
Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 3,745.70)
advanced 27.9 points, or 0.8%.
CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX - 14.53)
spent a brief period of time in negative territory this morning,
but ended up closing 0.2 point, or 1%, higher.
A Trader's Take
"The best thing about today's market was that, despite small
moves in the indexes, many momentum names continued to offer a
great deal of opportunity for short-term traders," Sapp continued.
"A few big names that were on the move today were Facebook (FB), 3D
Systems (DDD), Apple (AAPL), Pandora Media (P), Angie's List
(ANGI), Sears (SHLD), and Caesars Entertainment (CZR). Since
correlations remain very low, there are still ample opportunities
on individual names, even when the market isn't doing much."
3 Things to Know About Today's Market
- The Labor Department said its
consumer price index (CPI)
climbed by a seasonally adjusted 0.1% in August, matching the
consensus view. Core prices -- which exclude food and energy
costs -- also rose by 0.1%. On a year-over-year basis, overall
consumer prices increased by 1.5% last month, down from the 2%
gain in July.
NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index
remained unchanged at 58 in September, after four consecutive
monthly gains. Economists, on average, were expecting a reading
of 59. The index's lack of movement was attributed to a rise in
30-year mortgage rates.
- Microsoft (
) revealed plans for a
$40-billion share repurchase program
today, while also raising its dividend by 22%. The software giant
will now pay a 3.4% dividend yield, compared to the 2.7% yield
paid by Apple (AAPL). The latest buyback program has no
5 Stocks We Were Watching Today
- Despite yesterday's advances in the financial sector,
was slapped with a price-target cut at Goldman Sachs this
-- which is scheduled to become a DJI component after Friday's
close -- received some bullish attention from front-month
- Put players have been descending upon on
Barrick Gold (ABX)
in droves lately, despite the stock's recent trek higher on the
Take-Two Interactive's (TTWO)
long-awaited video-game release did little to impress short-term
speculators, who purchased October-dated puts.
- One strategist scooped up
Bank of America's (BAC)
November options to wager on a significant near-term move for the
For a look at today's options movers and commodities
activity, head to page 2.
Crude futures fell for a third straight day, as further signs of
easing tensions in Syria drove prices lower. By the close,
October-dated crude lopped off $1.17, or 1.1%, to end at $105.42
per barrel -- its lowest finish in nearly a month.
Meanwhile, gold futures also declined, as investors await the
FOMC's latest policy statement. Gold for December delivery dropped
$8.40, or 0.6%, to finish at $1,309.40 an ounce.
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