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Option Brief: Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) rocketed higher right out of the gate this morning, tagging a new record high of $196. The shares have since trimmed their lead to 3.5%, to trade at $193, but option players are betting on TSLA to overtake the $200 mark by the end of the week.
TSLA has already seen roughly 40,000 calls cross the tape today, representing a 55% mark-up to the stock's average intraday volume. Most active is the weekly 2/14 200-strike call, where more than 3,700 contracts have changed hands, primarily at the ask price. Volume has exceeded open interest at the strike, and implied volatility (IV) on the option has soared 17 percentage points, hinting at newly bought bullish bets.
As alluded to earlier, buyers of the 200-strike calls expect TSLA to surmount the round number by Friday's close, when the weekly options expire. As my colleague Beth Gaston pointed out last week, speculators are paying a pretty penny for Tesla Motors Inc's (NASDAQ:TSLA) short-term options. In fact, the equity's 30-day at-the-money IV is up 5% today at 74.8% -- the highest it's been since October.