Schaeffer's Trading Floor Blog

Stocks to Watch Thursday: VIVUS, Inc., Zillow Inc, and ImmunoGen, Inc.

Analyzing VVUS, Z, and IMGN ahead of tomorrow's trading

by 4/9/2014 4:45 PM
Stocks quoted in this article:

Momentum names that made notable moves on Wednesday and could continue to do so into Thursday's session include biopharmaceutical company VIVUS, Inc. (NASDAQ:VVUS), real estate website Zillow Inc (NASDAQ:Z), and cancer treatment specialist ImmunoGen, Inc. (NASDAQ:IMGN). Here is a quick look at these stocks ahead of tomorrow's opening bell.

VIVUS, Inc. (NASDAQ:VVUS)

VIVUS has been on a steady slide over the past five trading days -- thanks to a quick rejection from its 40-day moving average one week ago -- bottoming at a multi-year low of $4.91 in today's session. At the close, the stock stood a few cents north of this mark at $5.00, but remained about 19% below its April 2 closing price of $6.18. Meanwhile, news surfaced last night that three VVUS directors have decided to not to run for re-election at the end of their term. Interestingly, short-term call open interest has almost doubled since March 24, while put open interest climbed less than 1%. As such, VVUS' Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) fell from an annual-high reading of 1.50 to 0.88 during this time period, indicating calls now outnumber puts among options expiring within three months. Furthermore, VVUS' 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) call/put volume ratio of 6.59 ranks in the 78th annual percentile, demonstrating calls have been bought to open at a faster-than-usual rate during the past two weeks.

Zillow Inc (NASDAQ:Z)

Zillow shot 7.7% higher today to close at $94.80, as Internet stocks experienced a sector-wide uptick. On a year-over-year basis, Z has been a technical outperformer, advancing more than 76%. However, short interest climbed 30.5% since the Nov. 1 reporting period, and now accounts for a lofty 26.1% of the stock's available float. Considering it would take nearly six sessions to cover these bearish bets, at the equity's average daily trading volume, Zillow may end up benefiting from some short-covering activity in the near term, should it keep moving north.

ImmunoGen, Inc. (NASDAQ:IMGN)

ImmunoGen tacked on another 6.5% today to close at $14.74 -- after last night announcing results from its initial trial of IMGN853 -- extending its week-to-date advance to roughly 11%. Furthermore, IMGN saw a change of pace in its options pits today, with 16 times the average daily amount of calls being exchanged. However, looking back on two weeks' worth of data shows that puts have been bought to open over calls at an annual-high rate recently. In fact, IMGN's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 6.01 ranks higher than all other comparable readings from the past year.


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