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Trina Solar Call Options Heat Up

TSL bulls are scooping up short-term calls

by 1/29/2013 11:46 AM
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Option bulls have taken a shine to Trina Solar Limited (ADR) (NYSE:TSL - 5.09), with short-term calls flying off the shelves. Around midday, the solar concern has already seen about 11,000 of these typically bullish bets cross the tape -- roughly 11 times its average intraday call volume. For comparison, fewer than 800 TSL puts have traded thus far.

Digging deeper, nearly all of the volume has transpired at the February 5 call, where nearly 11,000 contracts have changed hands at a volume-weighted average price (VWAP) of $0.31. With fewer than 1,400 calls currently docked at the front-month strike, and considering most of the calls have traded on the ask side of the aisle, we can assume speculators are buying the calls to open.

By purchasing the calls to open, the buyers expect TSL to extend today's upward momentum over the next couple of weeks. More specifically, the buyers will profit if TSL topples the $5.31 level (strike plus VWAP) by the closing bell on Friday, Feb. 15, when the options expire. The maximum risk on the trade is the initial premium paid for the calls.

However, today's appetite for bullish bets runs counter to the trend. The stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.90 stands just 5 percentage points shy of a 52-week peak, implying that near-term options traders have rarely been more put-heavy during the past year.

In the same skeptical vein, just one out of 13 analysts considers TSL worthy of a "buy" or better rating. Plus, nearly 28% of the stock's total available float is dedicated to short interest.

At last look, the shares of TSL have muscled 3.6% higher to linger in the $5.09 vicinity. Containing the stock's upward momentum are its formerly supportive 10-day and 20-day moving averages, which are on the verge of a bearish cross.

Daily Chart of TSL since December 2012 With 10-Day and 20-Day Moving Averages


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