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 Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX).
Netflix, Inc. has been in rally mode since hitting its most recent low of $159 last April, with the shares up roughly 150% to trade at $396.74. More recently, NFLX entered a brief period of consolidation over the turn of the calendar year, but found a solid layer of support from the $330 area. In fact, the equity's bounce off this underfoot level (thanks to a strong fourth-quarter earnings report) helped propel the shares to a new record peak of $399.94 this afternoon.
Against this backdrop, call volume is running at a 40% mark-up to typical intraday levels today, and a number of speculators are betting on a continued run higher through week's end. The two most active contracts in NFLX's options pits are the weekly 1/31 395- and 400-strike calls. The majority of the respective 3,129 and 5,168 contracts traded have done so on the ask side, implied volatility is more than 3 percentage points higher at each strike, and volume outstrips open interest, pointing to buy-to-open activity.
On the fundamental front, a report released earlier by ABI Research showed that Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) helped raise subscription services of U.K. over-the-top content (OTT) by 40% in 2013. Additionally, CEO Reed Hastings confirmed the company will be expanding its presence in France, Germany, and Belgium this year.