Unusual Options Activity: TSO, AMD, DAL & More

It’s time to review several stocks that had unusual options activity over the last week. Although traders can never be sure why these trades take place (and who’s making them), I believe it’s important to be aware of notable options activity as an indicator for directional bias.

Here’s a weekly recap of 10 stocks that had unusual options activity and what, if any, significance these trades may have.

Unusual Options Activity: 10 Stocks With Notable Trades


BioCryst Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:BCRX) – 5,000 Mar 17 2017 $10 calls were bought for $2.00. The $472M biotech company is expected to have Phase 2 data results on BCX7353 – APeX-1 (used to reduce or eliminate attacks in HAE patients) due out in the first quarter of 2017. On December 16th, JMP Securities upgraded the stock to outperform with a $10 price target.

Grupo Televisa (NYSE:TV) – Roughly 16,000 Jan 20 2017 $20 puts were sold for $0.35-$0.45. Prior to this trade, total put open interest was 10,083 contracts. More of these puts were opened for $0.15-$0.20 later in the week with open interest now at 31,367 contracts. After shares have nearly been cut in half from the 2015 highs, traders are betting on limited downside through at least the January options expiration.


Tesoro (NYSE:TSO) – 12,000 Jan 20 2017 $85 puts were purchased for $1.34-$1.49, making it the largest options position in the oil refiner. Shares have rallied more than $20 from the summer lows and are now retesting the March highs in the low $90’s. He/she could be making an outright bearish bet or hedging an existing long stock position into the new year.


Cognizant Technology Solutions (Nasdaq:CTSH) – There was a rollout from 10,000 Jan 20 2017 $55 calls ($2.30 credit) into 10,000 Feb 17 2017 $57.50 calls ($2.10-$2.15 debit). On November 11th, the Jan 20 2017 $55 calls were bought as part of a bull risk reversal for $1.87-$1.88. The IT services company trades at a P/E ratio of 15.43x (2017 estimates), 2.59x sales, and 3.33x book value. They recently acquired Adaptra, a Sydney-based insurance consulting company, for an undisclosed amount.

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The author does not hold a position in mentioned securities at the time of publication. ...

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