Technically speaking, the DJIA enters this week trading just
below potential round-number resistance at the 12,300 level, which
the Dow hasn't closed a session above since June 13, 2008. Support,
meanwhile, could materialize in the 12,150-12,200 region. As for
the SPX, traders should keep a close eye on 1,333.58, as this marks
a double of the index's March 2009 low. As Todd Salamone, Senior
Vice President of Research, noted in this weekend's edition of
Monday Morning Outlook
, "For short-term traders, 1,333.58 is worth noting as a potential
resistance or hesitation area."
In merger and acquisition news, General Electric Co. (
) announced that it has agreed to purchase the well support
division of John Wood Group PLC for approximately $2.8 billion in
cash. GE expects the deal to close this year. The Wood Group
division employs roughly 3,800 people worldwide.
Also in acquisitions, EchoStar Corp. (
) is buying Hughes Communications Inc. (
) for about $2 billion, including the assumption of debt. According
to the terms of the deal, Hughes shareholders will receive $60.70
per share. EchoStar expects the acquisition to close later this
Finally, Carl Icahn's Icahn Enterprises LP (
) extended its buyout offer for Dynegy Inc. (
) to Friday. The offer stands at $5.50 per share, or $665 million.
Icahn already owns 15% of Dynegy's shares, and acquiring another
35% would solidify the deal. "No price increase or further
extensions will be made," Icahn said.
On the earnings front, Agilent Technologies (A), Marriott
International (MAR), and MGM Resorts International (MGM) are slated
to release their quarterly earnings reports. Keep your browser at
for more news as it breaks.
There are no economic reports slated for release today, while
the latest ICSC-Goldman Sachs chain store sales report and the
Empire State manufacturing survey are slated to hit the Street
tomorrow. Wednesday brings us the latest word on January's new
housing starts, the January producer price index (PPI), weekly U.S.
petroleum supplies, and the minutes from the most recent Federal
Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting. Inflationary data continues
to roll in Thursday, with the release of January's consumer price
index (CPI). Also on Thursday's docket are weekly jobless claims,
leading economic indicators, and the Philadelphia Fed business
outlook survey. The economic calendar is bare on Friday.
Equity option activity on the Chicago Board Options Exchange
(CBOE) saw 1,644,043 call contracts traded on Friday, compared to
893,619 put contracts. The resultant single-session put/call ratio
arrived at 0.54, while the 21-day moving average held at 0.55.
**The volume data shown above is from the Nasdaq and NYSE
exchanges only. It does not include regional volume activity,
which means that other daily volume quotes you see may be
Trading the News: A Contrarian View.
Check out this special report from Bernie Schaeffer
Overseas trading looks strong this morning, as seven of the 10
foreign indexes that we track are in positive territory. The
cumulative average return on the collective stands at a gain of
0.97%. Asian markets headed sharply higher on Monday, with stocks
enjoying a relief rally in the wake of news that Egyptian President
Hosni Mubarak had resigned. China's Shanghai spiked more than 2.5%,
after economists speculated that this week's inflation data may
stay Beijing's hand, for now, on further tightening monetary
policy. European markets are mixed, however, with Asia's enthusiasm
failing to fully take hold.
Currencies and Commodities
The U.S. dollar is gaining ground against the euro this morning,
as currency traders position themselves ahead a meeting of European
finance ministers to discuss a response to the region's sovereign
debt crisis. Against this backdrop, the U.S. Dollar Index has
gained 0.38% to 78.76 in premarket trading. The greenback's gains
have taken their toll on commodities, with March crude up a mere
dime at $89.23 per barrel, while gold futures have slipped $1.40 to
$1,359 an ounce in London.
Unusual Put and Call Activity:
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