Facebook Inc (FB) Leads Social Media Stocks Higher

Social media stocks -- including Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR), LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD), and Angie's List Inc (NASDAQ:ANGI) -- are bucking the broad-market trend lower

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Jul 17, 2015 at 11:12 AM
Updated on Jul 17, 2015 at 11:20 AM

While the broader market is running into headwinds this morning, social media stocks are muscling higher. Among the popular names climbing the charts are Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR), LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD), and Angie's List Inc (NASDAQ:ANGI).

FB is fresh off a record high of $95.24, and was last seen up 4.8% at $95.21. In 2015, the shares have soared a market-beating 22%, and both traders and analysts are piling on the bullish bandwagon. The stock's 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) call/put volume ratio of 2.67 ranks higher than nearly three-quarters of comparable readings from the last year. Echoing this glass-half-full approach, 25 of 27 analysts rate Facebook Inc a "buy" or better.

TWTR has added 0.5% this morning to trade at $36.29. Over the past few months, traders at the ISE, CBOE, and PHLX have been counting on a breakout. Twitter Inc's 50-day call/put volume ratio of 2.77 ranks in the 88th annual percentile. Today, in fact, speculators may be rolling the dice on a move into territory not seen since late April, possibly buying to open the September 42 call. What's more, the options market appears to be pricing in a dramatic 12% move after the company unveils its quarterly earnings report the evening of Tuesday, July 28, per TWTR's weekly 7/31 36.50-strike straddle.

Moving along, LNKD is up 3.2% to trade at $226.28 -- though it remains in the red on a year-to-date basis. Given this longer-term downtrend, the shares may be vulnerable to a round of downgrades, as 21 of 27 analysts currently rate them a "buy" or better. In the options pits, there's plenty of optimism to be potentially unwound, too. LinkedIn Corp's 50-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX call/put volume ratio of 1.55 sits above 92% of comparable readings from the past year. Today, calls are crossing at five times the usual intraday rate, and traders are buying to open the near-the-money July 227.50 strike.

Finally, ANGI is staring at an intraday lead of 2.7% -- last seen at $6.12 -- and continuing to wind around the 6 strike. However, since this time last year, the stock has tumbled a precipitous 40%. Not surprisingly, short-term traders have shown an extreme bias for puts over calls. Angie's List Inc's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) rests at an annual high of 1.22. Looking ahead, the company will join a number of big names when it reports earnings next Wednesday morning.

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