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The shares of LinkedIn Corporation (NYSE:LNKD - 123.52) are assailing new heights today, and it looks like the options crowd is expecting even more upside in the short term. Already today, the social-networking concern has seen roughly 19,000 calls change hands -- almost four times its average intraday call volume, and close to three times the number of LNKD puts exchanged.
Garnering the most attention has been the weekly 125-strike call, which has seen around 6,100 contracts traded on open interest of fewer than 1,900, pointing to a batch of eleventh-hour bets. What's more, nearly three-fourths of the soon-to-expire calls traded at the ask price, suggesting they were bought.
By purchasing the calls to open, the buyers are expecting LNKD to muscle even higher over the next few hours, which represents the calls' remaining lifespan. Specifically, the volume-weighted average price (VWAP) of the calls is $0.41, meaning the buyers will be profitable if LNKD ends atop the $125.41 level (strike plus premium paid). However, the shares have already toppled this breakeven rail in intraday action, peaking at a record high of $125.50 in the first hour of trading.
Meanwhile, other options players have even higher hopes for LNKD. So far, the stock's out-of-the-money September 130 call has seen close to 2,100 contracts traded on open interest of just 735. Plus, most of the calls have crossed at the ask price -- again, hinting at buyer-fueled volume. By purchasing the calls at a VWAP of $0.67, the investors are hoping LNKD extends its uptrend beyond the $130.67 level within the next week.
At last check, LNKD has pared its initial lead, but is still sitting pretty with a gain of 3.4%.