by Option Review - April 21st, 2011 6:00 pm
Today’s tickers: RGLD, PENN, SAP & COL
RGLD - Royal Gold, Inc. – The gold mining company’s shares are up 3.05% this afternoon to arrive at $60.11, but near-term options activity suggests some strategists are positioning for the price of the underlying stock to pull back ahead of May expiration. Investors may be taking cautious or even pessimistic stances on Royal Gold ahead of the company’s third-quarter earnings report, scheduled for release before the market opens on May 5, 2011. More than 3,400 put options changed hands at the May $55 strike on previously existing open interest of just 519 contracts. It looks nearly all of the puts were purchased for an average premium of $0.35 apiece. Investors are buying low-delta puts, perhaps as a relatively cheap form of near-term downside protection in case of an earnings disappointment or some unforeseen exogenous shock that sends markets, particularly gold mining companies, lower. Traders long the puts make profit at expiration if shares in Royal Gold plunge 9.1% off the current price of $60.11 to breach the average breakeven point at $54.65 by May expiration. Other bearish signals appeared shortly after the put activity took place in the front month. Investors sold approximately 1,500 now in-the-money calls at the May $60 strike to take in net premium of $1.90 per contract. Perhaps call sellers see shares in Royal Gold tapering off and trading below $60.00 at expiration, in which case, traders keep the full amount of premium received on the transaction. Alternatively, traders may be long the underlying, selling covered calls on the stock. Options implied volatility is currently up 5.8% at 27.61% as of 12:50pm in New York.
PENN - Penn National Gaming, Inc. – Shares in the owner and manager of casinos and racetracks surged 7.6% this morning to $40.19, their highest since June 2008, after the company raised its full-year earnings and sales projections. PENN reported better-than-expected first-quarter net income of $0.48 a share on revenue of $667 million ahead of the opening bell on…
by Option Review - October 4th, 2010 5:27 pm
Today’s tickers: GME, CHE, PENN, JPM, MED, SLE & WYNN
GME - Gamestop Corp. – Bullish options strategies were initiated on the video game retailer today despite the 0.70% dip in the price of the underlying shares to $19.86. One long-term optimistic individual employed the use of a three-legged combination, selling puts to buy a call spread, in order to prepare for a rebound in Gamestop’s shares by April expiration. The investor purchased 3,000 calls at the April 2011 $20 strike for a premium of $2.13 each, sold 3,000 calls at the higher April 2011 $24 strike for premium of $0.72 apiece, and shed 3,000 puts at the April 2011 $16 strike at a premium of $0.81 a-pop. Net premium paid to initiate the spread amounts to $0.60 per contract. Thus, the trader is poised to profit should GME’s shares rally above the effective breakeven price of $20.60 by April expiration day. Maximum available profits of $3.40 per contract are safe in the investor’s wallet if the video game seller’s shares jump 20.85% over the current price of $19.86 to exceed $24.00 by expiration. Finally, a 3,000-lot October $20/$24 strike call spread traded around the same time as the three-legged transaction. Open interest in the near-term calls is sufficient to cover today’s volume. The investor responsible for the October contract activity may be rolling the spread up to the April contract and adding the short puts to provide additional financing on the bullish stance.
CHE - Chemed Corp. – Shares of the provider of hospice care as well as various consumer services such as plumbing and sewer cleaning via its Roto-Rooter segment slipped 2.00% to $55.34 as of 3:40 pm ET. Investors with a near-term bearish view on the stock appear to have sold 2,000 calls outright at the November $60 strike to pocket premium of $0.55 per contract. Call sellers keep the full premium received on the trade as long as Chemed’s shares fail to rally above $60.00 by expiration day next month. Investors could…
by ilene - September 12th, 2010 4:57 pm
Sam Antar makes a request to CFOs, Audit Committees, and auditors of public companies’ financial reports: study the SEC’s rules governing the calculation of non-GAAP measures such as EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization), and follow them. Correct the mistakes before the reports get filed so Sam doesn’t have to write an article and I don’t have to post it.
For example, Penn National Gaming (PENN) erroneously reported EBITDA as earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization AND charges for stock compensation, impairment losses, disposal of assets, losses from unconsolidated affiliates and the Empress Casino Hotel fire--that would be an "Adjusted EBITDA" or in PENN’s case, EBITDASCILDALUAECHFIRE.
Courtesy of Sam Antar
It’s pathetic that so many public companies miscalculate EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) and violate Regulation G governing the calculation of non-GAAP measures such as EBITDA. It seems that too many CFOs, Audit Committees, and auditors don’t take the time to thoroughly review compliance with all appropriate SEC financial reporting rules.
Starting in 2007, I reported improper EBITDA calculations by Overstock.com (NASDAQ: OSTK). After a brutal yearlong public battle, Overstock.com’s embittered CEO Patrick Byrne finally changed his company’s EBITDA calculation to comply with Regulation G. For additional details, please read Lee Webb’s Stockwatch article and Richard Sauer’s book.
Last July, I reported apparently erroneous EBITDA calculations by Penson Worldwide (NASDAQ: PNSN) and Comtech Telecommunications (NASDAQ: CMTL).
In this blog post, I will report erroneous EBITDA calculations by five more public companies: A. H. Belo Corporation (NYSE: AHC), FirstService Corporation (NASDAQ: FSRV), Animal Health International, Inc. (NASDAQ: AHII), Schawk Inc. (NYSE: SGK), and Penn National Gaming Inc. (NASDAQ: PENN).
First, let’s review how EBITDA supposed to be calculated
According to the SEC Compliance & Disclosure Interpretations, EBITDA is defined as under Regulation G as net income (not operating income) before interest,…
by Option Review - May 26th, 2009 5:59 pm
Today’s tickers: PENN, CIT, EXPE, RF, XRT, FITB, UNH, UNG & MU
PENN – Shares of the gaming and racing company have lifted 8% to $30.79 amid gains experienced by a number of casino operators today. PENN edged onto our ‘hot by options volume’ market scanner after one investor initiated a put spread in the October contract. The spread was established through the purchase of 6,550 puts at the October 25 strike price for 2.02 each against the sale of 6,550 puts at the lower October 20 strike for a premium of 79 cents. The net cost of the transaction amounts to 1.23 and yields a maximum potential profit of 3.77 if shares declined to $20.00 by expiration. Such a trade could represent downside protection by an individual who is long the stock. Or, it could potentially represent a medium-term bearish position by a trader hoping to profit in the event of a 22% decline in shares through the breakeven point at $23.77 by expiration. – Penn National Gaming, Inc.
CIT – The bank holding company’s shares have rallied nearly 7% to $3.38 today, attracting some bullish option players seeking to benefit from further gains in the stock. Call-volume at the near-term June 5.0 strike price ballooned upward by more than 48,000 as investors purchased at least 37,200 contracts for an average premium of 23 cents each. The calls will begin to yield profits to investors if the underlying shares can increase 55% from the current price and surpass the breakeven point at $5.23 by expiration. Optimism spread to the July 5.0 strike where 5,500 calls were coveted for 40 cents apiece. Finally, the October 5.0 strike attracted some bullish action as well as some 2,000 calls appear to have been bought for 65 cents per contract. Option implied volatility climbed as high as 192% during the trading day up from Friday’s closing value of 151%. – CIT Group, Inc.
EXPE– Shares of the online travel company have climbed more than 6% to $15.88 amid renewed takeover chatter reported by one source. Option traders on EXPE have braced themselves for bullish movement in the stock as some 2,300 calls were purchased at the near-term June 17.5 strike price for an average premium of 35 cents per contract. In order to profit from a long-call position by expiration shares of Expedia must double today’s rally in order to breach the…