Too Many Options: EWJ, VXX, ABX, HPQ, BWP

by Enis May 23, 2014 7:31 am • Commentary

ETFs more active than single stock options, a theme that has persisted for much of the past 2 weeks.  With the VIX hitting a new 1 year intraday low, implied volatility in many options contracts neared multiyear lows.

1.  EWJ – Buyer of 50k of the July 11 calls for 0.43 midday.  Japanese shares bounced this week after the USD/JPY briefly crossed below the 200 day moving average before snapping back higher.  The Nikkei is still down 11% year-to-date.

2.  VXX – Puts traded more than 2x the average 1 month volume as the VXX traded at a new all-time low, though it closed higher for the first day in 5.  The Jun6th 34.5 puts and the May23rd 36 puts were the most active lines.

3.  ABX – Buyer of 14k of the Jan16 22 calls for 1.23.  The 1 year high in ABX is 21.68.  ABX last traded above $22 in April 2013.  ABX is currently down 6% in 2014 after hitting a new low for the year this week.

4.  HPQ – Stock closed down more than 2% on heavy volume after the company missed earnings expectations.  Options traded nearly 10x average volume, with the Aug 32/35 call spread trading 10k at 1.33 in the afternoon (before the earnings report), and the weekly 32 puts trading over 16k at an average priced of 0.48.

5.  BWP – Seller of 33k of the Sept 15/17.5 call spread at 1.50, as a trader rolled a long Sept 15 call position up to the Sept 17.5 calls.  BWP has rallied 50% since its March low after  cut in its distribution.