Opening View: DJIA Futures Plunge 100 Points on European Debt Concerns


The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) rallied more than 150 points heading into the Thanksgiving holiday, but the blue chip barometer is on the verge of erasing nearly all of those gains this morning. Futures on the DJIA and the S&P 500 Index (SPX) are trading 109 points and 11.5 points below fair value, respectively, as the specter of European sovereign debt refuses to go away. Reports from the euro zone are once again casting doubt on Portugal and Spain, even as the shadow of the Irish bailout looms over the region. As such, Black Friday could see Wall Street slip deep into the red, as the DJIA plunges toward the 11,100 region and the SPX eyes support at the 1,180 level.

After yesterday's holiday break, news is light on the equity front. CPI International Inc. ( CPII ) agreed to be purchased by an affiliate of private equity firm Veritas Capital for $19.50 per share in cash - a premium of 35% over Wednesday's close. CPI said the deal is valued at around $525 million.

Elsewhere, Harbinger Capital cut its stake in New York Times ( NYT ), according to a regulatory filing. Harbinger reduced its stake in the newspaper to 2.58%. Prior to the move, a filing in October revealed that Harbinger held a 7.41% stake in the company.

Finally, retailers will be front and center today. Traders will be focusing on big names such as Inc. ( AMZN ), eBay Inc. ( EBAY ), Wal-Mart Stores Inc. ( WMT ), Target Corp. (TGT), Best Buy Co. Inc. (BBY), as data begins to trickle in from the front lines on Black Friday.

Earnings Preview

The earnings calendar is quite today after the Thanksgiving holiday. Keep your browser at for more news as it breaks.

Economic Calendar

There are no economic reports slated for release today.

Market Statistics

Equity option activity on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 994,971 call contracts traded on Wednesday, compared to 514,857 put contracts. The resultant single-session put/call ratio arrived at 0.52, while the 21-day moving average slipped to 0.57.

Volatility indices

NYSE and Nasdaq summary

**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 higher.**

Dow, S&P and Nasdaq futures

Overseas Trading

Overseas trading looks abysmal this morning, as all 10 of the foreign indexes that we track are trading firmly in the red. The cumulative average return on the collective stands at a loss of 1.20%. Asian markets are broadly lower, with Hong Kong and Shanghai leading the retreat on fears that Beijing will broaden its efforts to slow its overheating economy after the People's Bank of China ordered commercial banks to curtail lending in the remaining weeks of the year. In Europe, the Spanish and Portuguese markets are leading a broad decline over worries that the countries may be next on the bailout list. In fact, The Financial Times Deutschland newspaper reported that euro zone nations are pressuring Portugal into seeking aid in order to prevent Spain from having to do the same.

Overseas markets

Currencies and Commodities

The day may have changed, but the song remains the same for commodities and currencies traders. The U.S. dollar continues to flex its muscles as a safe-haven investment amid euro zone debt concerns, placing downward pressure on dollar-denominated commodities. At last check, the U.S. Dollar Index was up 0.80% at 80.39 - the index's first trip above the 80 level since late September. Meanwhile, crude futures, which typically trade inversely to the greenback, have fallen 91 cents to $82.95 per barrel in electronic trading. What's more, gold futures are also sharply lower, falling $14.20 to $1,360.80 an ounce in London.

Currencies and commodities

Unusual Put and Call Activity:

For an explanation of how to use this information, check out our Education Center topics on Option Volume and Open Interest Configurations .

Unusual options activity - puts

Unusual options activity - calls

Every morning, our research staff analyzes the prior day and the overnight markets, and monitors the morning wires to give you an accurate preview of the day to come. If you enjoyed today's edition of Opening View, sign up here for free daily delivery, straight to your inbox, before the opening bell.

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This article appears in: Investing , Options

Referenced Stocks: AMZN , CPII , EBAY , NYT , WMT

Schaeffer's Investment Research

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