Today’s tickers: LVS, LULU & VCLK
LVS – Las Vegas Sands Corp. – Weekly options on Las Vegas Sands Corp. are active this morning ahead of the release of July Macau gaming revenue data on Wednesday. Shares in the casino resort operator are off their highs of the session, but remain in positive territory, up 1% at $37.15 as of 12:15 p.m. in New York. Traders dabbling in LVS weeklies appear to be positioning for shares to extend gains in the near term. The most active contracts, the Aug. 03 ’12 $39 strike calls, traded upwards of 3,100 times in the first half of the session versus open interest of 636 positions. It looks like strategists purchased most of the options for an average premium of $0.36 apiece, thus positioning for a 6%-plus upside move in the share price by expiration. The Aug. 03 ’12 $40 strike call also saw traders step in to purchase around 700 contracts at an average premium of $0.16 each. Shares in LVS are down roughly 40% off the April 12th four-year high of $62.09, having fallen hard and fast in the most recent three month period to touch down at its lowest in nearly two years last week.
LULU – Lululemon Athletica, Inc. – The single-largest transaction in Lululemon options today may be a pre-earnings bet that shares in the athletic apparel retailer could rebound somewhat following the company’s second-quarter report on September 10th. Shares in the name are down more than 3% this morning to stand at $59.56 and have declined more than 25% off the May 3rd all-time high of $81.09. It looks like one strategist initiated a one-by-two ratio call spread to position for limited gains in the price of the underlying through September expiration. The trader likely purchased 3,000 calls at the Sept. $70 strike for a premium of $1.82 each and sold 6,000 calls up at the Sept. $77.5 strike at a premium of $0.84 apiece. The net cost of the bullish spread amounts to $0.74 per contract and positions the trader to make money in the event LULU’s shares surge 19% to top the breakeven price of $70.74. Maximum possible profits of $6.76 per contract are available on the spread if shares in the name rally 30% to settle at $77.50 at expiration.
VCLK – ValueClick, Inc. – Digital marketing services company, ValueClick, Inc., popped up on our scanners this morning due to heavier than usual put activity in the front month options. August put buying on the stock suggests at least one strategist is positioning for shares in the name to potentially slip following the second-quarter earnings report on Thursday. Shares in ValueClick are down 2.8% this morning to stand at $15.82. A couple of weeks ago we noted buyers stepping up to get long the Aug. $19 strike call. Open interest in excess of 2,100 calls at the Aug. $19 strike indicates upside call buyers are still positioned to benefit from a near term rally in the price of the underlying. Meanwhile, put buying on VCLK this morning looks for shares in the name to decline in the next few weeks. Upwards of 1,100 puts are in play at the Aug. $15 strike today versus open interest of just 54 contracts. Much of the volume appears to have been purchased for an average premium of $0.45 apiece. Put buyers may profit at expiration should ValueClick’s shares drop 8% from the current level to trade below the breakeven price of $14.55.