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OPEC to limit production

There is broad confidence on the Street this Thursday morning in a Reuters story claiming that OPEC nations have come to an agreement to lower oil production by nearly one million barrels per day. The production cut is not expected until November, but around the world, oil prices are already rallying. In other news, Initial Jobless Claims for the week of 9/24 came in at 254K this morning, which was again lower than estimates. It is interesting that evidence of the strong labor market should be so clear and consistent, given that the economy is seeing few, if any, of the benefits usually associated with a strong labor market. Most oil stocks are up today, of course, but the market has a big loser as well: Fitbit (FIT) is down 9% after analysts announced that its newest product was selling poorly.

West Texas Intermediate crude is trading at $47.22. At present, the S&P 500 is up 0.01%, the DJIA is down 0.04%, and the NASDAQ is down 0.28%.

Here are your Thursday morning market metrics. Industries doing well today include energy equipment, IT services, and beverages. Industries showing weakness include construction materials, independent power, and pharmaceuticals. The VIX is up 0.5% to 12.46, after closing on Tuesday at 12.39. The most heavily traded options this morning are for Vanda Pharmaceuticals (VNDA), with 5,000 January 18 calls and 5,000 January 15 puts changing hands. The total put/call ratio as of 10:00 AM was 1.01 (201,067/202,273). NYSE Adv/Dec 1,276/1,576. Nasdaq Adv/Dec 974/1,488.

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Julian Close

Julian Close became a stockbroker in 1995. In his 20 years of market experience, he has seen all market conditions and written about every aspect of investing. Julian has also written extensively on corporate best practices and even written reports for the United Nations. He graduated from Davidson College in 1993 and received a Master of Arts in Teaching from Mary Baldwin College in 2011. You can see closing trades for all Julian's long and short positions and track his long term performance via twitter: @JulianClose_MIC.