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Coeur d'Alene Mines Corporation (CDE) scored an upbeat analyst note on Thursday, after UBS boosted its price target on the stock to $19.25 from $17.25. Perhaps in light of the news, the mining mogul saw a surge in bullish bets yesterday, with near-term option traders employing both calls and puts on the stock.
More specifically, the security's April 17.50 call saw roughly 2,000 contracts change hands – 76% of which traded at the ask price, implying they were likely purchased. In addition, call open interest at the front-month strike advanced by almost 1,250 contracts overnight, suggesting a healthy portion of yesterday's activity consisted of fresh bullish positions.
Meanwhile, CDE's May 17 put saw more than 1,900 contracts cross the tape – 55% of which traded at the bid price, indicating they were likely sold. Put open interest at the back-month strike swelled by almost 1,600 contracts overnight, confirming our suspicions of sell-to-open activity. By writing the May 17 puts, the sellers are expecting CDE to remain atop the $17 level through May options expiration.
However, data from the International Securities Exchange (ISE) and Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) suggests that yesterday's optimistic activity runs counter to the norm. The stock's 10-day put/call volume ratio on the ISE/CBOE stands at 2.85, in the 85th annual percentile. In other words, during the past two weeks, speculators on the exchanges have bought to open CDE puts over calls at a much faster pace than usual.
In early afternoon trading, CDE has powered 1.9% higher to flirt with the $17.50 level.