Despite a brief afternoon breach in yesterday's session, the
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI)
was able to keep its hold on the
-- a level not cracked on a daily closing basis since
. This noteworthy neighborhood remains in play heading into today's
session, with futures on the broad-market barometer churning just
Among equities in focus,
LinkedIn's (LNKD )
quarterly results could encourage some love from the brokerage
bunch; short sellers may jump ship in light of
Zagg's (ZAGG )
post-earnings parade; and,
Kraft Foods' (KFT - 39.59)
results could please options traders.
And now, on to the numbers...
Equity option activity on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (
) saw 1,081,439 call contracts traded on Thursday, compared to
850,990 put contracts. The resultant single-session put/call ratio
arrived at 0.79, while the 21-day moving average was 0.64.
From the Trading Floor
Sapp reveals, "The levels to watch on the
today will be
. There's a very good chance one of them will get tested due to the
market's reaction to
the jobs report
, and watching
around those levels will be key."
Currencies and Commodities
U.S. dollar index
is pointed higher this morning, with the greenback up 0.1% at
is set to end the week with a thud, with the front-month
contract down 1.1% at $101.37 per barrel.
five losses in a row
? All indications say yes, with the malleable metal 0.2% lower
at $1,632 an ounce.
In earnings news,
LinkedIn Corporation (LNKD - 109.41)
said its first-quarter profit more than doubled, arriving at $5
million, or 4 cents per share. Excluding items, LNKD banked a
per-share profit of 15 cents, while revenue swelled 101% to $188.5
million. The results came in well above the Street's forecast for
adjusted earnings of 9 cents per share on $178.58 million in sales.
LNKD could be positioned for some post-earnings upgrades, as 53% of
analysts still maintain a tepid "hold" suggestion toward the stock.
LNKD is up more than 9% ahead of the bell.
Zagg Incorporated (ZAGG - 11.93)
reported a first-quarter profit of $5.1 million, or 16 cents per
share, up 54% from the comparable quarter of 2011. Excluding items,
earnings came in at 46 cents per share, while revenue surged 105.7%
to $55.5 million. Analysts, on average, were expecting a profit of
14 cents per share on sales of $52 million. ZAGG may be poised for
some short-covering activity in the near term. Short interest
accounts for a staggering 43% of the stock's available float, and
the security is set to open the session with a 5% lead.
Kraft Foods (KFT - 39.59)
said its first-quarter profit edged up 1.8% to $813 million, or 46
cents per share, while revenue increased 4.1% to $13.09 billion.
Excluding items, KFT earned 57 cents per share. The results
surpassed analysts' expectations, which called for a profit of 56
cents per share on $13.05 billion in revenue. Options players were
picking up short-term calls on KFT ahead of earnings, with the
stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio docked at 0.90.
KFT is 0.7% higher in pre-market trading.
Earnings and Economic Data
The week wraps up with the Labor Department's report on
. We'll hear earnings from
Arcos Dorados (
, Duke Energy (
Estee Lauder (
, Exelon (EXC), and
The Washington Post (WPO)
Asian markets ended mostly lower, as traders seemed jittery
ahead of today's U.S. jobs data. Weakness in gold and oil pressured
miners and energy stocks, while a lackluster sales report from
China Vanke weighed on property developers. However, rising hopes
for a market-boosting maneuver by regulators helped Shanghai-listed
stocks battle back from early losses. By the close, Hong Kong's
Hang Seng declined 0.8%, South Korea's Kospi gave up 0.3%, and
China's Shanghai Composite advanced 0.5%. Markets in Japan are
closed for holiday.
European equities are pointed south at midday, with investors
pricing in some disappointing economic data. Markit's composite
euro-zone purchasing managers index (PMI) tumbled to 46.7 in April,
down from the March reading of 49.1. The monthly decline points to
an accelerating pace of contraction in regional business activity.
At last check, the French CAC 40 is down 0.2%, the German DAX has
shed 0.4%, and London's FTSE 100 is 0.7% lower.
Unusual Put and Call Activity:
For an explanation of how to use this information, check out our
Open Interest Configurations
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