UA - Under Armour, Inc. – Options on the athletic apparel maker are more active than usual today, with volume of 11,300 contracts running more than four times the stock’s 90-day average options volume of 2,475 contracts. Shares in Under Armour are down 0.80% at $98.19 in early-afternoon trade, slipping Tuesday after hitting a new all time high of $99.35 on Monday. Options traders exchanging around 2.5 calls on the name for each single put in play so far in the session appear to be positioning for the price of the underlying to continue to secure fresh highs in the next few weeks. In- and out-of-the-money calls in the front month are seeing the most action, with the April $95 and $97.5 strike calls trading upwards of 1,100 times each. Traders positioning for fresh record highs in the price of the stock snapped up more than 500 calls at each of the April $105 and $110 strikes, paying premiums of $1.00 and $0.33 apiece, respectively. Call buyers may profit at expiration should Under Armour’s shares post sharp gains prior to the Company’s first-quarter earnings report on April 24th. The April contract calls expire several days ahead of UA’s earnings release. Traders long the call options may profit at April expiration as long as Under Armour’s shares surge 6.7% and 11.1% to top average breakeven prices of $106.00 and $110.33, respectively.
AIG - American International Group, Inc. – Shares in AIG have mostly traded within the range of $20.00 to $30.00 during the most recent six month period. Activity in long-dated call options on the insurer, however, suggests one strategist is positioning for the price of the underlying to break out strongly to the upside at some point during the next ten months. Shares…
ORCL – Oracle Corp. – Shares of the software company rallied as much as 1.45% this afternoon to touch an intraday high of $25.75, which is just $0.88 below the stock’s current 52-week high of $26.63. Options activity on Oracle is quite active ahead of the firm’s first-quarter earnings report scheduled for release after the closing bell tomorrow evening. One options investor hoping to see Oracle’s shares extend gains through the start of 2011 initiated a delta neutral hedge in the January 2011 contract. It looks like the trader purchased a total of 12,500 puts at the January 2011 $21 strike for a premium of $0.45 apiece, tied to the purchase of a large number of ORCL shares for $25.65 each, on a 0.15 delta. The long position in shares suggests perhaps that the investor expects tomorrow’s earnings report to lift shares and/or foresees continued bullish movement in the price of the underlying stock over the next 5 months. But, the put options serve as a type of insurance policy for the trader in case Oracle’s shares falter going forward. Options investors exchanged more than 77,800 contracts on the software maker by 3:10 pm ET.
DV – DeVry, Inc. – The for-profit operator of colleges and universities popped up on our ‘hot by options volume’ marker scanner after one investor initiated a call spread in the November contract. DeVry’s shares fell as much as 2.9% in the first half of the trading session to touch down at an intraday low of $41.25, but made a strong recovery in early afternoon trading, and currently stand 1.25% higher on the day at $43.01 as of 12:52 pm ET. The investor populating the November contract wisely established a contrarian debit call spread on the stock when shares were still in the red. The options strategist purchased 2,000 calls at the November $45 strike at a premium of $2.00 each, and sold the same number of calls at the higher November $50 strike for premium of $0.65 apiece. Net premium paid to purchase the spread amounts to $1.35 per contract. The investor is positioned to make money if DeVry’s shares rally another 7.8% over the current price of $43.01 to surpass the effective breakeven point at $46.35 by expiration day in November. Maximum potential profits of $3.65 per contract are available to the call-spreader if…
CRM – Salesforce.com, Inc. – A large-volume ratio call spread on the provider of customer relationship management services this afternoon implies one options investor expects CRM shares to rally significantly by August expiration. Salesforce.com’s shares increased as much as 1.83% today to reach a new 52-week high of $81.23 during the current session. According to a Reuters report this weekend, analysts at Deutsche Bank maintain their ‘buy’ rating on the stock and raised their share price target on CRM to $110 from $100. The optimistic options trader populating the stock this afternoon purchased 13,000 calls at the August $85 strike for a premium of $5.00 apiece, and sold 26,000 calls at the higher August $100 strike for $1.05 each. Net premium paid by the investor for the transaction amounts to $2.90 per contract. Maximum available profits of $12.10 per contract accumulate for the trader if shares of the underlying stock surge at least 23% from the new 52-week high of $81.23 to reach $100.00 by August expiration. The investor starts to make money as long as CRM’s shares trade above the effective breakeven point at $87.90 ahead of expiration day.
CPB – Campbell Soup Co. – Options traders anticipating a sharp increase in the price of Campbell Soup Co.’s shares by November expiration scooped up record numbers of call options on the global manufacturer and marketer of branded convenience food products today. CPB’s shares traded 0.25% higher in late afternoon trading to $35.45, which is just off their current 52-week high of $35.80 (attained back on December 2, 2009). Campbell-bulls purchased approximately 5,200 calls at the November $40 strike for an average premium of $0.55 per contract. Investors holding these contracts are prepared to profit should Campbell’s share price jump 14.4% from the current price to exceed the average breakeven point to the upside at $40.55. Investors exchanged roughly 5,925 option contracts on CPB during the trading session, which represents 56% of the total existing open interest on the stock of 10,567 lots.
VALE – Vale S.A. – Diverse bullish options strategies employed on Brazilian metals and mining company, Vale S.A., today indicates investors are expecting the price of the iron-ore maker’s shares to appreciate in the next few months. Vale’s shares rallied 1.20% at the start of the session to an intraday high – and new…
This is a non-trading topic, but I wanted to post it during trading hours so as many eyes can see it as possible. Feel free to contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Last fall there was some discussion on the PSW board regarding setting up a YouCaring donation page for a PSW member, Shadowfax. Since then, we have been looking into ways to help get him additional medical services and to pay down his medical debts. After following those leads, we are ready to move ahead with the YouCaring site. (Link is posted below.) Any help you can give will be greatly appreciated; not only to help aid in his medical bill debt, but to also show what a great community this group is.
The story of energy is the story of human expansion. From the days when we roamed the African savanna, we tamed first fire and then other forms of energy, using them as tools to control our environment and improve our lives. The control of energy has always been at the heart of the human story.
This week our Outside the Box essay is from my friend Marin Katusa, who has written a fascinating book about a part of that story, a subplot of intrigue and conspiracy. Under Putin, Russia has aspired to dominate the energy markets. Called The Colder War, Marin’s book is a well-written tale of the rise of Putin and his desire to change the way the world’s energy markets are controlled.
I sat down a few months ago with an advance copy, not sure...
Bulls showed renewed backbone last week and drew a line in the sand for the bears, buying with gusto into weakness as I suggested they would. After all, this was the buying opportunity they had been waiting for. As if on cue, the start of the World Series launched the rapid market reversal and recovery. However, there is little chance that the rally will go straight up. Volatility is back, and I would look for prices to consolidate at this level before making an attempt to go higher. I still question whether the S&P 500 will ultimately achieve a new high before year end.
In this weekly update, I give my view of the current market environment, offer a technical analysis of the S&P 500 chart, review our weekly fundamentals-based SectorCast rankings of the ten U.S. business sectors, and then o...
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This post is for all our live virtual trade ideas and daily comments. Please click on "comments" below to follow our live discussion. All of our current trades are listed in the spreadsheet below, with entry price (1/2 in and All in), and exit prices (1/3 out, 2/3 out, and All out).
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If you're following Valeant's proposed takeover (or merger) of Allergan and the lawsuit by Allergan against Valeant and notorious hedge fund manager William Ackman, for insider trading this is a must-read article.
Linette Lopez describes the roles played by key Wall Street hedge fund owners--Jim Chanos, John Paulson, and Mason Morfit, a major shareholder in Valeant. Linette goes through the con...
There is lots of action in Southwest Airlines Co. November expiry call options today ahead of the air carrier’s third-quarter earnings report prior to the opening bell on Thursday. Among the large block trades initiated throughout the trading session, there appears to be at least one options market participant establishing a call spread in far out of the money options. It looks like the trader purchased a 4,000-lot Nov 37/39 call spread at a net premium of $0.40 apiece. The trade makes money if shares in Southwest rally 9.0% over the current price of $34.32 to exceed the effective breakeven point at $37.40, with maximum potential profits of $1.60 per contract available in the event that shares jump more than 13% to $39.00 by expiration. In September, the stock tou...
Now that bitcoin has subsided from speculative bubble to functioning currency (see the price chart below), it’s safe for non-speculators to explore the whole “cryptocurrency” thing. So…is bitcoin or one of its growing list of competitors a useful addition to the average person’s array of bank accounts and credit cards — or is it a replacement for most of those things? And how does one make this transition?
With his usual excellent timing, London-based financial writer/actor/stand-up comic Dominic Frisby has just released Bitcoin: The Future of Money? in which he explains all this in terms most readers will have no tr...
Reminder: Pharmboy is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.
Well PSW Subscribers....I am still here, barely. From my last post a few months ago to now, nothing has changed much, but there are a few bargins out there that as investors, should be put on the watch list (again) and if so desired....buy a small amount.
First, the media is on a tear against biotechs/pharma, ripping companies for their drug prices. Gilead's HepC drug, Sovaldi, is priced at $84K for the 12-week treatment. Pundits were screaming bloody murder that it was a total rip off, but when one investigates the other drugs out there, and the consequences of not taking Sovaldi vs. another drug combinations, then things become clearer. For instance, Olysio (JNJ) is about $66,000 for a 12-week treatment, but is approved for fewer types of patients AND...
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