Option Bulls Cheer as Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (FCAU) Pops on UAW Pact

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (NYSE:FCAU) reached a tentative labor agreement with the UAW

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Oct 8, 2015 at 10:27 AM

While all eyes are on Capitol Hill -- where one top Volkswagen exec is testifying before Congress -- the other huge news within the automotive industry is the securing of a tentative agreement between Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (NYSE:FCAU) and the United Auto Workers (UAW) following weeks of negotiations. The development has lifted FCAU 1.8% to $15.08, much to the delight of recent call buyers.

Specifically, over the past two weeks, traders have bought to open more than 33 FCAU calls for every put at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX). While this suggests speculators have been upping the ante on an FCAU breakout, it's also possible these calls are actually hedges initiated by short sellers. Over 8% of the stock's float is sold short, and would take 18 sessions to repurchase, at FCAU's typical daily trading levels. Supporting this theory, over the past two weeks, 33,000 out-of-the-money FCAU calls changed hands across all exchanges -- the most of any in-, at-, or out-of-the-money options.

Technically speaking, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (NYSE:FCAU) has had a strong 2015, despite the looming threat of a labor stoppage. With today's gains, the shares' year-to-date advance is now north of 30%. The stock is hardly in the clear, however. The aforementioned pact still requires a vote by UAW members, who rejected a prior proposal last week.

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