The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) cracked 12,000 for the
first time since June 2008 yesterday, but the blue chip barometer
was unable to hold its lofty perch amid a veritable storm of
economic and earnings data. Wall Street will have no time to rest
today, either, as the continuing corporate earnings deluge will be
joined by weekly initial jobless claims and durable goods data.
Against this backdrop, futures on the DJIA and the S&P 500
Index (SPX) are trading basically flat this morning, with the Dow 5
points above and the SPX 1.2 points below fair value.
Technically, the DJIA could make another run at 12,000 today, and
support remains firm near 11,900. Additional support resides in the
11,800-11,850 area, which is home to the Dow's rising 10-day moving
average. The SPX, meanwhile, rebounded off its 10-day trendline on
Wednesday, and could now challenge the 1,300 level once again
today. Support for the broad-market index resides near 1,275-1,280
-- site of its 20-day moving average.
In equity news, Procter & Gamble Co. (
) reported that its second-quarter profit slid 28% to $3.33
billion, or $1.11 per share. Excluding charges and discontinued
operations, earnings came in at $1.13 per share, as revenue climbed
1.5% to $21.35 billion. Wall Street was looking for a
second-quarter profit of $1.10 per share. Looking ahead, PG
forecast third-quarter earnings of 95 cents to $1 per share, with
total sales expected to rise 5% to 7%. Analysts surveyed were
expecting earnings of 99 cents on $20.12 billion in sales.
After the close last night, Netflix Inc. (
) said that its fourth-quarter profit rose 52% to $47 million, or
87 cents per share, as revenue rose 34% to $596 million. This blew
past Wall Street's estimates, with analysts expecting earnings of
71 cents per share on revenue of $596.4 million. The company, which
announced it now has more than 20 million subscribers, said it
expects to end the first quarter with 21.9 million to 22.8 million
subscribers, and revenue of $684 million to $704 million. The
consensus first-quarter revenue estimate currently sits at $675.7
Also, Starbucks (
) reported first-quarter profit of $347 million, or 45 cents per
share, up from $242 million, or 32 cents per share, in the
year-earlier period. Sales rose 8% to $3 billion. Analysts had
expected Starbucks to earn 39 cents per share on sales of $2.92
Finally, Qualcomm (
) announced that its earnings rolled in at $1.17 billion, or 71
cents per share, compared to net income of $841 million, or 50
cents per share, for the same period the previous year. On a
non-GAAP basis, the company said it earned $1.35 billion, or 82
cents per share, for the recent quarter. Revenue grew 25% to $3.35
billion. Analysts were expecting earnings of 72 cents per share on
revenue of $3.2 billion.
On the earnings front, Altria Group Inc. (
), AT&T Inc. (T), Caterpillar Inc. (CAT), D.R. Horton Inc.
(DHI), Lockheed Martin Corp. (LMT), Potash Corp./Saskatchewan
(POT), Raytheon Company (RTN), Tyco International Ltd. (TYC),
Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN), Microsoft Corp. (MSFT), Monster Worldwide
Inc. (MWW), SanDisk Corp. (SNDK), and Verisign Inc. (VRSN) are
slated to release their quarterly earnings reports today. Keep your
for more news as it breaks.
Weekly initial jobless claims will be joined by December's
durable goods orders today, while we round out the week tomorrow
with a first look at fourth-quarter gross domestic product (GDP),
November's s pending homes sales, and the University of Michigan's
final look at January consumer sentiment.
Equity option activity on the CBOE saw 1,474,263 call contracts
traded on Wednesday, compared to 857,603 put contracts. The
resultant single-session put/call ratio arrived at 0.58, while the
21-day moving average held at 0.53.
**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 has a positive bias this morning, with seven of
the 10 foreign indexes that we track in positive territory. The
cumulative average return on the collective stands at a gain of
0.16%. Asian markets closed mostly higher, though Hong Kong's Hang
Seng and China's Shanghai closed mixed following news that Beijing
unveiled a fresh set of measures to check rising home prices.
Across the pond in Europe, stocks are trading broadly higher,
though the banking sector is weak after Standard and Poor's
downgraded Japan's credit rating to AA- from AA.
Currencies and Commodities
The dollar received a bit of lift in overseas trading in the
wake of Standard and Poor's downgrade of Japan's credit rating.
However, while the greenback has gained ground versus the yen, it
remains weak against the rest of its major competitors.
Specifically, the U.S. Dollar Index has fallen 0.24% to 77.72 in
premarekt trading. Crude has been unable to capitalize on the
dollar's weakness, with futures down 63 cents at 86.70 per barrel
heading into the open. Finally, gold futures are only modestly
higher in London, rising $5.70 to $1,340.20 an ounce.
Unusual Put and Call Activity:
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