Bullish Bias Builds as Chevron Stock Taps Another High

Chevron could see even more upgrades and/or price-target hikes going forward

by Josh Selway

Published on Jan 11, 2018 at 10:19 AM

With oil prices rising in recent months to multi-year highs, it's not surprising Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX) has been on a strong run since this past July. CVX shares have gained 23.6% in the past six months, and this morning touched a fresh three-year high of $129.95. Let's take a closer look at Chevron stock and this morning's brokerage attention below.

BMO this morning upgraded the energy giant to "outperform" from "market perform" and lifted its price target to $140 from $120, citing U.S. tax reform and higher oil prices as two reasons for the bullish note. Meanwhile, Wells Fargo boosted its price target to $129 from $117. Shares of CVX were last seen trading up 1.4% at $130.37 as a result.

The security could enjoy more upbeat analyst attention going forward, since half of the brokerages in coverage still rate it just a "hold" or "strong sell." Plus, Chevron is overtaking its average 12-month price target of $129.82.

Options traders have seemingly been betting on more upside. The stock has a 10-day call/put volume ratio of 2.62 at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), showing call buying has almost tripled put buying over the past two weeks. This ratio ranks in the 93rd annual percentile, so this type of focus on long calls over puts is quite rare.

It's becoming pricier to target calls over puts, however. This is according to CVX's 30-day implied volatility skew of -1.2%, which is just 1 percentage point from an annual low. Nonetheless, call volume is already accelerated today, with more than 9,000 of the contracts crossing so far -- more than half the average daily volume.

CVX stock price

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