Nasdaq, S&P 500 Eye Weekly Wins As Bond Yields Retreat

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) is 57 points lower at midday, reversing this morning's gains despite the 10-year Treasury yield falling to a three-month low of 1.44%. The S&P 500 Index (SPX) is also slightly below breakeven, following yesterday's record. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) is sporting modest gains, as FAANG names make headway. For the week, the S&P 500 and Nasdaq are eyeing substantial wins, while the Dow is staring at a loss. 

MMC Stats 0611

Biotechnology concern Vaxart Inc (Nasdaq: VXRT), which was last seen up 28% to trade at $9.18, is seeing an unusual amount of options activity today after Piper Sandler initiated coverage of the security with an "overweight" rating and $18 price target. So far, 159,000 calls and 27,000 puts have exchanged hands -- 23 times the intraday average. Most popular is the weekly 6/11 9-strike call, followed by the 9.50-strike call in the same series, with new positions currently being opened at both. In other words, buyers expect more upside for VXRT by the end of the day. Today's pop has helped the equity breakthrough overhead pressure at the $8 mark, which had been in place since early May. And while shares are still far from a Feb. 2, six-year high of $24.90, VXRT is up 308.3% year-over-year. 

Near the top of the Nasdaq, today is Novan Inc (Nasdaq: NOVN), up 96.2% at $17.74 at last check. Today's massive bull gap came after the company announced its antiviral gel for treatment of contagious skin infection molluscum contagiosum met the main goal of a late-stage trial, with positive safety and efficacy data. The security is now trading at its highest level since March and is eyeing its biggest percentage jump in over a year. The positive price action has also placed shares above the 80-day moving average, which had been pressuring NOVN lower since April. Year-over-year, the security is up more than 327%.

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