Why These 2 Biotech Stocks Are Sizzling

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:ARWR) and Repros Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:RPRX) are lighting up the charts on positive drug data

Apr 13, 2016 at 10:36 AM
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A number of biotech stocks are moving sharply today. While some are sliding lower, others are swinging higher, including drugmakers Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:ARWR) and Repros Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:RPRX). Below, we'll take a look at the drug data boosting ARWR and RPRX, and how options traders have been placing their bets on the biotech stocks.

ARWR has popped 9.3% at $5.75, after the drugmaker said it will present "promising data" on its hepatitis B treatment at the International Liver Congress. Earlier, the stock was as much as 16.3% higher. As it is, the shares are now at their highest point since early January.

This ought to be a boon to bullish options traders. During the past 10 weeks at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), traders have bought to open more than 11 Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals Inc calls for each put. The corresponding call/put volume ratio of 11.29 ranks in the 63rd percentile of its annual range.

RPRX has boomed to an intraday gain of nearly 26% to trade at $1.03, thanks to positive clinical trial data for the biotech's menstrual bleeding drug, Proellex. However, this headway is small beans in the grand scope of things, considering the shares were on the doorstep of double-digit territory one year ago.

In the options pits, short-term traders have been more call-skewed than usual toward Repros Therapeutics Inc. The stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.20 indicates call open interest is five times put open interest among contracts expiring in the next three months. What's more, the SOIR sits in the low 29th percentile of all readings taken in the past year.

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