Housing Sector Is Bright Spot In Otherwise Slow-Moving Day


Though wading in the red for most of the session, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) made it four up days in a row, eking out a narrow victory in the last minutes of trading.

"It was a mixed bag today, really. On the whole, earnings were disappointing, especially from big tech concerns like IBM," said Schaeffer's Senior Technical Strategist Ryan Detrick. "But on the other hand, housing starts for September were the strongest in more than four years! I've said this many times before, but the multiple that improving housing data will do for confidence is exponential versus anything the Fed can do by pumping liquidity into the system."

And now, a look at the numbers...



Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 13,557.00) International Business Machines Corp.'s ( IBM ) AA

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,460.91) and Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 3,104.12) didn't stray too far from breakeven, but followed the Dow into positive territory. The SPX tacked on 6 points, or 0.4%, while the COMP added 3 points, or 0.1%.

The CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX - 15.07) edged 0.2 point, or nearly 1%, lower today, marking a second day below its 20-day moving average.

Today's highlight : "We've been bullish on housing names all year, so you have to like the fact that although the market was pretty much flat, housing names kicked butt once again," smiled Detrick. "All in all, the stage is still set for a strong fourth-quarter rally, and it very well might be led by housing."

Noteworthy stats at the close:

  • The equity put/call volume ratio across all 10 options exchanges arrived at 0.77, with 8.4 million calls traded today, compared to roughly 6.5 million puts.
  • The put/call volume ratio on the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN (NYSEARCA:VXX - 32.98) -- which tagged a new split-adjusted record low of 32.78 -- checked in at 1.30, with puts outnumbering calls.
  • The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) showed an advance/decline ratio of 2.28, signaling the number of upward movers outpaced the decliners by a margin of more than two to one. Meanwhile, the advance/decline ratio of 1.60 on the Nasdaq confirmed that the number of upward movers trumped the decliners.

Check our Trading Floor Blog and Daily Options Blog for today's big stories, including:

And, in case you missed it ... Schaeffer's On Charts : Two Speed Bumps for Builders.

For today's activity in commodities, options, and more, head to page 2.

Crude futures were virtually flat on the day, as traders digested a surprise uptick in the domestic inventories report against the fastest rise in U.S. housing starts in four years. By the close, oil for November delivery added 3 cents, or less than 0.1%, to settle at $92.12 a barrel.

Gold futures also posted a win, supported by the upbeat housing data and a weakening greenback -- which took a dip after Moody's maintained its credit rating for Spain. December-dated gold jumped $6.70, or 0.4%, to land at $1,753 an ounce.

Levels to watch in trading...

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 13,557.00) - support at 11,500; resistance at 14,000
  • S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,460.91) - support at 1,100; resistance at 1,500
  • Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 3,104.12) - support at 2,400; resistance at 3,400







At the end of every market day, the staff at Schaeffer's Investment Research reviews the trading day in detail, covering major events and key market developments. Don't miss this critical, timely and insightful report. If you enjoyed today's edition of Market Recap, sign up here for free daily delivery straight to your inbox.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized reproduction of any SIR publication is strictly prohibited.

This article appears in: Investing , Options

Referenced Stocks: AA , C , FB , FOSL , IBM

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