Stocks are somewhat higher in morning trading, but the market has already reversed direction twice since the opening bell. Companies dependent on oil are still in crisis mode and nothing happened overnight to ease the pressure. Another wave of selling rocked the Chinese markets, and the US 2-year treasury is back under a 2% yield.
Two stocks giving the market some lift today are Verizon (VZ), which held on to more subscribers than usual, and FireEye (FEYE), which acquired a privately held rival cybersecurity company. Perhaps more telling, however, is Kinder Morgan (KMI), which today announced that its profits had fallen yoy, and that it would be significantly cutting its dividend. Even so, its results were so much better than what the Street expected that the stock is up 14%. Finally, the initial jobless claims number came in higher than expected this morning, but only slightly.
At present, the S&P 500 is up 0.86%, the DJIA is up 0.89%, and the NASDAQ is up 0.8%.
Here are your Thursday morning market metrics. Industries doing well today include independent power, textiles, and multiline retail. Industries showing weakness include road & rail, health care technology, and electrical equipment. The VIX is down 1% to 26.83 after closing on Wednesday at 27.59. The most actively traded equity options are for the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY) with 20K Jan-29 191.5 calls changing hands. The total put-call volume ratio as of 9:30 AM was 1.07 (447,930/477,465). NYSE Adv/Dec 1,936/972. Nasdaq Adv/Dec 1,448/894.