Posts Tagged ‘MDC’

Frenzied Bearish Options Activity Ensues as Visa, MasterCard Shares Take a Big Hit

Today’s tickers: V, MA, JPM, COF, EEM, STX, MDC, DPS, MYL & LEN

V – Visa, Inc. – Shares of the world’s largest payments network are down sharply by 7.75% to stand at $68.92 as of 2:55 pm (ET) after Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D – RI) suggested Monday that the U.S. should cap interest rates on credit cards. Other credit card companies such as MasterCard and Capital One Financial Corp. are also suffering significant share price erosion this afternoon. Bearish options investors flooded the May contract with pessimistic plays, while more optimistic traders appear to be positioning for a rebound in Visa’s share price by June expiration. Investors bracing for continued bearish movement in the price of the underlying stock picked up 3,600 now in-the-money puts at the May $70 strike for an average premium of $1.15 apiece. Buying interest spread to the lower May $65 strike where 1,400 puts were purchased at an average premium of $0.36 each. Finally, uber-bearish traders scooped up 1,290 puts at the May $60 strike – the lowest strike price currently available in the front month – for an average premium of $0.16 apiece. Investors long the May $60 strike puts make money if Visa’s shares plummet 13.15% from the current value of $68.92 to breach the average breakeven point to the downside at $59.84 by expiration on Friday. Bearish traders also ravaged May contract calls, selling roughly 7,000 lots at the May $75 strike to take in an average premium of $0.71 per contract. Investors also shed 2,000 calls at the May $70 strike to receive an average premium of $2.47 apiece. Call sellers retain the full premium received today as long shares of the underlying stock do not exceed $70.00 ahead of expiration. Finally, optimistic options investors are positioning for a rebound in the credit card company’s shares by purchasing 1,800 calls at the June $70 strike for an average premium of $4.71 each. Shares must rally 8.4% over the current price of the stock before June $70 strike call buyers start to make money above the average breakeven price of $74.71. Bullish call buying activity spread to the higher June $72.5 strike where 2,500 calls were picked up for an average premium of $3.64 per contract. Investor uncertainty, as measured by the overall reading of options implied volatility, is net up on Visa today with volatility rising 16.5% to 52.68% as…
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