Too Many Options: Some Unusual Names of Note

by Kristen November 27, 2012 4:42 pm • Commentary

On a day without major trends in the market there were some interesting things happening in some smaller names.

1. ALL – Allstate Corp, 18K+ Jan’13 37 calls traded in a spread with 16K+ Apr 38 and 5K Jan’13 36 calls and Apr 27 calls traded. The dividend ex-date is 11/28, so I thought this might be a dividend play, but the Jan’13 37 line has 22K open interest so perhaps was rolling out. It looks a bit like Jan was bought and April sold both times. ALL’s average option volume is under 5K and 118K have traded today mostly in-the-money calls, so I’m leaning back toward dividend play action.

2. DTV – the printing is strange so this may or may not have been a spread, but 7K Mar 46 puts traded and10K Mar 52 calls. It looks like the puts were bought and the calls sold, but the print price on the calls was below the listed bid. The open interest on the lines was small. 7K+ Dec 48 puts traded and it looked like mostly sales after the open. 36K+ options have traded today whereas average is 3K+. They are entering a new distribution deal with NBCUniversal.

3. VMED – Virgin Media the Mar/June 37 call spread traded 5K times, looks like it was bought. There was open interest on the March side so may be rolling.

4. IWM – iShares Russell 2000 Index, 50K Feb 75 puts by 20K Feb 80 puts traded. Almost 79K Dec 84 calls have traded.

5. OVTI – Omnivision Technologies, earnings Thursday afternoon, lots of January upside call buyers have pushed iv30 up over 6 points. All the months are skewing to the upside.  I haven’t followed, but it is being talked about as a short squeeze.

6. ACAD – Acadia Pharmeceuticals announced postive results from Phase III trials of Pimavanserin for use in Parkinson’s disease psychosis, 73K options have traded versus an average of 2500. Stock is up almost $3 pushing it over $5.  Stock has only been over $3 a few days in the last two years. Over 3000 Dec 2 calls have traded, over 11K Dec 2.5 calls and 3K puts, over 6K Dec 5 calls and over 21K puts, over 4K Dec 7 calls and nothing over 1000 on any lines in any of the other months.

7. CLSN – Celsion Corp., oncology drug developer will be entering Phase III trials of a drug with make or break potential for the company. 38K options have traded today. Stock has been going up with high volume and stratospheric implied vol since mid Nov. The market looks like it is betting on news in January or February. Livevol blog has a nice post on this. The Feb 4.5/2 put spread traded 5000 times.