TripAdvisor Stock Upgraded After Earnings Bear Gap

Options traders have been put-heavy toward TRIP

by Emma Duncan

Published on Aug 3, 2018 at 9:30 AM

Shares of TripAdvisor Inc (NASDAQ:TRIP) are up 0.2% in electronic trading, after analysts showered the travel booking concern with both bull and bear notes. The barrage of brokerage notes comes just two days after the company reported a second-quarter earnings beat alongside disappointing revenue, which sent the stock plunging more than 11% yesterday to $51.18.

Needham handed the travel concern an upgrade to "underperform" from "hold," with analyst Laura Martin saying the firm sees TRIP becoming an online travel agency (OTA) leader. SunTrust Robinson and JPMorgan Securities also took the bullish route, hiking their respective price targets to $50. On the other hand, Barclays slashed its price target to $68 from $70, while Credit Suisse and Stifel lifted their price targets to $48 and $44 respectively, stiff discounts to last night's close. From a broader perspective, 19 of the 21 analysts covering TripAdvisor stock sport "hold" or worse ratings.

Ahead of yesterday's drop below the 50-day moving average, TRIP had been on an uptrend since bottoming out at its mid-November lows near $30, most recently peaking at a fresh annual high of $62.36 on July 27. TripAdvisor stock has picked up 48% year-to-date. 

Looking toward options, data from the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) shows TRIP with a 10-day put/call volume ratio of 1.15, ranking in the 74th percentile of its annual range. This indicates that during the past two weeks, puts have been purchased over calls at a faster-than-usual clip.

Echoing this, TRIP's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) comes in at 1.47 and ranks in the 69th percentile of its annual range. This indicates near-term put open interest outweighs call open interest by a wider-than-usual margin at the moment. 

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