Could a Facebook Inc (FB) 'FANG' Merger Be in the Mix?

Facebook Inc (FB) and Netflix, Inc. (NFLX) could be headed toward a FANG-themed merger

Jan 10, 2017 at 11:51 AM
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Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is making waves today, as the social media stock has emerged as a potential suitor on fellow "FANG" stock Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX). In addition, FB saw its price target boosted to $156 from $150 at Cowen, suggesting the brokerage firm anticipates a move into record-high territory for the shares.

The stock isn't really capitalizing on the headlines, however. At last check, FB was up a slim 0.1% at $125.06. More encouraging, though, is the fact that the shares look like they're starting to consolidate atop their 100-day moving average, which contained a post-bear gap rebound attempt in November, and may now be switching to a more supportive role.

fb daily jan 10

Plenty of bullish options traders would welcome a more decisive bounce from that trendline. In the last two weeks, speculators at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) have bought to open 1.64 FB calls for every put. Among short-term options players, the weekly 2/3 123-strike call has been of particular interest in the past 10 trading days, adding nearly 10,000 positions -- at least three-quarters of which were bought to open. In other words, these traders anticipate FB will extend its lead above $123 through the close on Friday, Feb., 3, when the weekly series expires.

For those considering the social media stock's options, now is an excellent time to strike. FB has a Schaeffer's Volatility Index (SVI) of 19%, which rests below 85% of all readings from the past year. In other words, relatively low volatility expectations are being priced into short-term contracts at the moment.

Turning elsewhere on Wall Street, the consensus expectation toward the shares is bullish. Of the 32 analysts rating Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), all but three have doled out a "buy" or better opinion -- with not a single "sell" recommendation on the books. Not to mention, a meager 1.1% of the stock's float is sold short.

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