For those of you jonesing for a new product from Apple , the wait will soon be over. No, it's not a new iPod or iPhone- it's the company's sixth release of its Mac OS X Leopard operating system, slated for debut on Friday. The new Leopard includes a new desktop with features like Stacks, a new way to access files from the Dock; a redesigned Finder with which users browse and share files among multiple Macs; Quick Look, enabling users to see files without opening an application; Spaces, used to create groups of applications and instantly switch among them; and Time Machine, an automatic backup for all files on a Mac. Apple's Leopard will set you back a mere $129, compared to the $199 MSRP for Microsoft's Vista Basic OS.

Despite the wealth of selling pressure sweeping the Street today, APPL has managed to keep its head above water - albeit barely. At last check, the stock was up fractionally at $167.52 per share. Technically, while the stock continues to struggle with overhead resistance at the 170 level, the shares are clinging tightly to support at their rising 10-day and 20-day moving averages. AAPL has not breached both of these short-term trendlines on a daily closing basis since August 20.

On the sentiment front, pessimism continues to creep into the stock's backdrop. AAPL's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) now indicates that calls and puts are in near parity, with a reading of 0.96. Furthermore, this ratio is bordering on a pessimistic extreme, arriving in the 68th percentile of its annual range. This pessimism could be a boon for the shares, should AAPL continue to trek higher.