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Thursday, 01/04/2024 2:59:01 PM

Thursday, January 04, 2024 2:59:01 PM

Post# of 648882
Stocks Edge Higher, Nasdaq Looks to Snap Skid
By: Schaeffer's Investment Research | January 4, 2024

• Upbeats jobs data is driving today's optimism

• The Do and S&P 500 boast solid midday gains

Stocks are attempting to regain their 2023 form today. Both the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) and S&P 500 Index (SPX) are comfortably back to gains this afternoon, while the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) furiously pares earlier losses. The tech-heavy index -- looking to snap a four-day skid -- broke into the black midday, as the broader market enjoys upbeat jobs data.

Continue reading for more on today's market, including:

• Can YETI withstand a new competitor?
• Chip stock bucking broad market selloff.
• Plus, WW puts pop; MRK's big upgrade; and a chip supplier in the red.



Put traders are loading up on WW International Inc (NASDAQ:WW) stock today, after Eli Lilly (LLY) launched a website and home delivery option for its weight-loss drug. At last check, 12,000 puts have already exchanged hands -- 11 times the intraday average volume. The weekly 1/5 7-strike put is getting the most attention, with positions opening there. WW is down 12.5% to trade at $6.69 at last check, but is 54% higher-year-over-year.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) stock is near the top of the SPX today, last seen up 2.2% at $117.28, after TD Cowen upgraded it to "outperform" from "market perform," with a price-target hike to $135 from $125. The firm is bullish on the pharma giant's Keytruda cancer immunotherapy, as well as other drugs in the pipeline. MRK added 4.8% in the last 12 months.

NXP Semiconductors NV (NASDAQ:NXPI) stock is in the SPX gutter, down 3.4% to trade at $208.63 at last check. Automobile-related semiconductor stocks like NXPI and Wolfspeed (WOLF) are lower after sector peer Mobileye Global's (MBLY) inventory warning. NXPI has shed 8.6% already in 2024, but is 32.9% higher year-over-year.



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