Earnings Preview: GoPro Inc, SunPower Corporation, and Yelp Inc

Option players are pricing in bigger-than-usual earnings reactions for GoPro Inc (GPRO), SunPower Corporation (SPWR), and Yelp Inc (YELP)

Oct 27, 2015 at 2:40 PM
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It's been another busy day of earnings, and things aren't looking to cool off anytime soon. Among the companies slated to hit the confessional Wednesday evening are action camera maker GoPro Inc (NASDAQ:GPRO), solar stalwart SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR), and business review site Yelp Inc (NYSE:YELP). Below, we'll take the pre-earnings temperature of GPRO, SPWR, and YELP.

  • GPRO has been a technical train wreck, losing 55% year-to-date to sit at $28.33 -- including a 1.6% drop this afternoon. As such, over half of the stock's float is sold short. This may help us make sense of why option traders appear so bullish toward GoPro Inc, based on its 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) call/put volume ratio of 2.78 -- in the 88th percentile of its annual range. Put plainly, short sellers may be initiating long calls to serve as protection.

    GPRO option players are anticipating a huge move, following tomorrow night's earnings report. At present, the stock's near-term at-the-money (ATM) straddle is pricing in a 13% swing in either direction -- bigger than the 10.8% move the equity has averaged in the aftermath of its last eight appearances.

  • Meanwhile, the options market is pricing in a 7.7% post-earnings swing for SPWR. Over the last eight quarters, the stock has tended to move a slightly tamer 6.7% in the session after reporting. It appears option traders are upping the bullish ante, based on SunPower Corporation's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX call/put volume ratio of 5.42 -- just 9 percentage points from an annual peak. Of course, with over one-tenth of the stock's float sold short, these long calls could be protective in nature -- especially considering the security's 8% year-to-date deficit. This afternoon alone, SPWR has given back over 4% to trade at $23.72.

  • YELP continues to embarrass itself on the charts, shedding 8.4% this afternoon to sit at $22.38 -- and sporting a 59% loss in 2015. Understandably, traders at the ISE, CBOE, and PHLX have been placing bearish bets on the underperformer, per its 10-day put/call volume ratio of 1.05 -- which ranks above 95% of comparable readings from the prior 12 months. Shifting to tomorrow night's earnings report, the market is pricing in a bold 18% post-event swing. Historically speaking, Yelp Inc has averaged a slightly more modest 16.4% move in the session after its past eight quarterly reports. Good news for bears -- six of those swings have resolved to the downside, including a 25.2% loss after YELP's late-July appearance.

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