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Ciena Corporation (CIEN) Traders Zero In On $20

Ciena Corporation (CIEN) is sitting at its year-to-date breakeven level

by 3/30/2015 3:19 PM
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Ciena Corporation (NYSE:CIEN) puts have been bought to open over calls at a quicker-than-usual clip in recent weeks. The stock's 10-day put/call volume ratio across the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) is 0.77, which ranks in the 85th percentile of its annual range.

This isn't any great surprise, considering CIEN's technical track record. The shares are up 1.2% this afternoon to trade at $19.41, but that only brings them to their year-to-date breakeven mark. Plus, longer term, the communications networking stock is down 14.4% year-over-year.

Today, both calls and puts are running at more than double their usual intraday pace. In the top spot is the out-of-the-money April 20 call, which traders are buying to open. In short, they expect Ciena Corporation (NYSE:CIEN) to topple the round-number $20 level by the close on Friday, April 17, when front-month options expire.


Tesla Motors, Inc. (TSLA) Option Bulls Take Action After CEO Tweet

Tesla Motors Inc (TSLA) call volume exploded after CEO Elon Musk's enigmatic tweet

by 3/30/2015 2:50 PM
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Call volume is exploding in Tesla Motors Inc's (NASDAQ:TSLA) options pits. The contracts are crossing at 13 times the pace normally seen at this point in the day, with weekly contracts in high demand. In fact, all 10 of TSLA's most popular options expire at the close this Thursday. Most popular is the weekly 4/2 190-strike call, where nearly 11,000 contracts have changed hands -- roughly twice that of the next closest option. Speculators purchasing the calls are looking for the shares to extend their rally above $190 through the close this Thursday.

Today's preference for calls runs counter to what's been seen of late in TSLA's options pits. During the past two weeks at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), the equity's 10-day put/call volume ratio of 1.10 ranks in the 84th percentile of its annual range. This means puts have been bought to open over calls at a faster-than-usual pace.

The stimulus for today's call-buying party is a tweet. It wasn't just any tweet, though. TSLA CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) earlier to make an announcement:

After the tweet hit users' timelines, TSLA shares -- as well as those of SolarCity Corp (NASDAQ:SCTY) -- got a shot in the arm. Take a look at a minute-by-minute chart of TSLA today. It's not hard to figure out when Musk's tweet went live.

Minute chart of TSLA

The shares were in the red before Musk took to Twitter. At last check, however, Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) was 2.7% higher at $190.


SolarCity Corp (SCTY) Calls Hot Amid Unconfirmed Tesla Rumors

SolarCity Corp (SCTY) is higher today as the rumor mill churns

by 3/30/2015 2:40 PM
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M&A Monday has hit warp speed, and alternative energy concern SolarCity Corp (NASDAQ:SCTY) has popped 2.2% to $51.26, amid unconfirmed rumors that a cryptic tweet from Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) CEO Elon Musk could be indicative of a possible partnership with SCTY. Meanwhile, in the equity's options pits, traders are showing a distinct preference for calls, with the contracts trading at 1.6 times what's typically seen at this point in the day, and outpacing puts by a 2-to-1 margin.

Drilling down, it appears speculators are gambling on even more gains during this holiday-shortened week, with possible buy-to-open activity detected at SCTY's weekly 4/2 50.50- 52-, and 52.50-strike calls. If traders are indeed initiating long positions here, the goal is for the equity to settle north of the strikes at this Thursday's close, when the weekly series expires.

Widening the sentiment scope reveals today's accelerated call volume is just more of the same. In fact, the stock's 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) call/put volume ratio of 3.98 ranks in the 99th annual percentile. Simply stated, calls have been bought to open over puts with more rapidity just 1% of the time within the past year.

On the charts, SCTY has put in an uninspiring performance in recent months, churning between $48 and $60 since early November. What's more, since getting swiftly rejected by its 200-day moving average in mid-February, the shares have shed 13.6%. More recently, the equity has been staring up at its 80-day moving average, a trendline that appears to be containing today's advance. As such, it's possible that a portion of the recent call buying -- particularly at out-of-the-money strikes -- is a result of shorts hedging against any unexpected upside. Currently, 40.7% of SolarCity Corp's (NASDAQ:SCTY) float is sold short.

Daily Chart of SCTY Since October 2014 With 80-Day and 200-Day Moving Averages


Option Bulls Circle Cyberark Software Ltd (CYBR)

Cyberark Software Ltd (CYBR) call options have tripled puts thus far

by 3/30/2015 1:55 PM
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The shares of cybersecurity firm Cyberark Software Ltd (NASDAQ:CYBR) are notably higher in early afternoon action, up 4.5% at $54.60. The stock has now added more than 37% in 2015, and option traders today are rolling the dice on even more upside in the short term.

CYBR calls are trading at 1.3 times the average afternoon clip, and have more than tripled puts thus far. Most active is the April 55 call, which speculators are seemingly buying to open. The volume-weighted average price (VWAP) of the calls is $3.01, meaning the buyers will make money if CYBR conquers $58.01 (strike plus VWAP) by the close on Friday, April 17, when front-month options expire. Risk, meanwhile, is capped at the initial premium paid, should CYBR remain beneath the strike through the options' lifetime.

However, CYBR's 30-day at-the-money implied volatility sits at 71.5% -- in the 27th percentile of its annual range. For comparison, the equity's 30-day historical volatility is docked at 76.2%, suggesting now is an opportune time to buy CYBR's short-term options.

While Cyberark Software Ltd (NASDAQ:CYBR) has outperformed the broader S&P 500 Index (SPX) by 49 percentage points during the past two months, short interest skyrocketed by 58.8% during the last couple of reporting periods. Likewise, five of eight analysts maintain "hold" or worse ratings, and the consensus 12-month price target of $48.33 represents a discount to CYBR's current price. Should the shares resume their quest for new highs -- the equity peaked at $70.48 in mid-February -- a mass exodus of shorts or a round of upbeat analyst attention could add fuel to the equity's fire.


M&A Speculation Fuels Bullish Betting on Intel Corporation (INTC)

Intel Corporation (INTC) calls are trading at an accelerated clip today

by 3/30/2015 1:45 PM
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Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) shot higher on Friday afternoon, amid reports the chipmaker has its sights set on Altera Corporation (NASDAQ:ALTR) -- the latter of which got handed a plate full of bearish backlash this morning. Today, INTC has pared a portion of these gains -- down 0.9% at $31.72 -- but options traders think another end-of-week surge is on the horizon.

Taking a quick step back, INTC calls are trading at 1.6 times the average intraday pace, with the equity's weekly 4/2 31.50 strike popular among today's speculators. It seems safe to assume buy-to-open activity is happening here, as traders roll the dice on the stock extending its lead north of $31.50 through Thursday's close, when the weekly series expires.

Although INTC calls have received increased attention of late, the withstanding trend has been toward puts. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), the security's 50-day put/call volume ratio of 0.96 ranks in the 83rd annual percentile. In other words, puts have been bought to open over calls at a faster-than-usual clip in recent months.

Technically speaking, Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) has put in a strong performance over the long term, boasting a nearly 23% year-over-year gain. As a point of reference, the Dow has tacked on slimmer 9.4% over that same time frame. Should the shares resume this uptrend, a continued shift in sentiment among options traders could translate into fresh tailwinds for INTC.

Weekly Chart of INTC Since March 2014


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