Omeros Corporation (OMER) Plunge Pleases Short Sellers

A lackluster earnings report has landed Omeros Corporation (OMER) on the short-sale restricted list

by Alex Eppstein

Published on May 10, 2016 at 10:46 AM

Good news for Omeros Corporation (NASDAQ:OMER) short sellers -- the drug stock is bombing on a wider-than-expected quarterly loss. In addition, the company's revenue came up short of the Street's consensus estimate, though OMER expects it will "reach cash-flow positive status later this year, fully funding [its] pipeline." With the stock short-sale restricted, intraday options volume is at triple typical levels -- though still very light, on an absolute basis.

Taking a quick step back, options traders have been buying to open OMER calls over puts at a breakneck speed in recent months. The stock's 50-day call/put volume ratio across the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) is a top-heavy 12.46. Plus, this ratio outstrips 96% of all others from the past year, confirming a bias toward long calls over puts.

Of course, some of these call buyers could be OMER short sellers in disguise. Roughly one-quarter of the stock's float is sold short, meaning these bears may have scooped up long calls to hedge against an unforeseen upside move. Today's post-earnings plunge, however, has short sellers sitting pretty.

Specifically, Omeros Corporation (NASDAQ:OMER) has dropped 13.8% to hover near $10.83. This is more of the same for the drug stock, which has been selling off for the past month since running into resistance in the $16 neighborhood. Earlier today, the shares explored single-digit territory for the first time since March 1.

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