Stocks quoted in this article:
Momentum names that made notable moves on Monday and could continue to do so into Tuesday's session include stun-gun maker TASER International, Inc. (NASDAQ:TASR), solar energy specialist JA Solar Holdings Co., Ltd. (ADR) (NASDAQ:JASO), and steel producer United States Steel Corporation (NYSE:X). Here is a quick look at these stocks ahead of tomorrow's opening bell.
TASER International, Inc. (NASDAQ:TASR)
TASER International extended its six-month climb to more than 90%, after spiking 5.2% today to close at $16.90. Meanwhile, option traders zeroed in on TASR's short-term calls, with these options accounting for four of the top five most active strikes on the day. Considering short interest makes up 6.6% of the equity's float, some of today's call activity -- particularly the buy-to-open variety at out-of-the-money strikes -- may actually be the work of short sellers hedging against continued upside. TASER International is set to replace Consolidated Graphics, Inc. (NYSE:CGX) in the S&P SmallCap 600 Index after the close tomorrow.
JA Solar Holdings Co., Ltd. (ADR) (NASDAQ:JASO)
While JA Solar dropped 6.4% today to close at $8.63, option traders picked up calls at a rate that more than doubled the average daily volume. Almost two-thirds of the day's total volume crossed at the February 9 call, with the majority of activity here of the sell-to-open kind. This acceleration of call writing marks a change of pace in JASO's options pits. Over the past 10 sessions, the stock has racked up a lofty International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) call/put volume ratio of 133.24, which ranks the highest of all other comparable readings from the past year. In other words, before today, speculators were buying to open calls over puts at an annual-high pace.
United States Steel Corporation (NYSE:X)
United States Steel shed 4% today to perch at $25.06, on weaker-than expected ISM manufacturing data. As such, put players swarmed X's options pits, snatching up contracts at a rate of more than double the average daily pace. Digging deeper, much of the action transpired in the form of a long put spread at the March 21 and 24 strikes. Today's action was quite different from United States Steel's longer-term trend, as the stock boasts a six-month gain of 43.7%, and its Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio of 0.84 ranks the lowest of all other readings from the past year, meaning short-term option traders are more call-heavy now toward X than they have been at any other time throughout the last 12 months (today withstanding).