Stocks quoted in this article:
The 20 stocks listed in the table below have attracted the highest total options volume during the past 10 trading days. Names highlighted are new to the list since the last time the study was run, and data is courtesy of Schaeffer's Senior Quantitative Analyst Rocky White. One name of notable interest this afternoon is Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR).
All eyes are on Twitter Inc this afternoon, as the micro-blogging concern prepares to unveil its first-ever quarterly earnings report after tonight's close. With no precedence on how the stock tends to fare following the scheduled event, option traders in today's session are taking the high road. With roughly an hour to go before the big reveal, calls are outpacing puts by a nearly 2-to-1 margin. Meanwhile, the stock's 30-day, at-the-money implied volatility (IV) is up 2.5% to 83.0%.
Among the short-term crowd, one option trader appears to have initiated a moderately slanted bull call spread using weekly 2/7 72- and 80-strike calls. The roughly 700 contracts that respectively changed hands at each strike did so near the ask price for $2.75 and closer the bid price of $0.75 per contract. IV soared more than 30 percentage points at the transactions, pointing to buy-to-open activity. Ideally, TWTR will rise above the breakeven mark of $74 (purchased strike plus the net debit of $2.00 per pair of contracts) by this Friday's close.
Longer-term options traders are taking the traditional bullish route. Around 9,500 March 70 calls have crossed the tape thus far -- mostly at the ask price. IV is up 1.3 percentage points, and volume exceeds current levels of open interest, suggesting the initiation of a fresh batch of bullish bets. It's roughly a flip of the coin as to whether this call will be in the money at expiration on Friday, March 21, per its delta of 0.46, or 46%. In today's session, the stock was last seen sitting about 6% below the strike price at $66.10.