CarMax Stock Swings Higher on Earnings Beat

Put buyers have blasted KMX stock in recent weeks

by Karee Venema

Published on Dec 21, 2018 at 9:47 AM

The shares of CarMax, Inc (NYSE:KMX) were lower in premarket action, after the used car retailer said unit sales slumped 1.2% on a comparable store sales basis in the third quarter. However, the company also said total unit sales rose 2.3% over the three-month period, and reported a third-quarter earnings beat of $1.09 per share on in-line revenue of $4.3 billion. As such, KMX stock was last seen up 2.8% at $58.28.

It's been a tough stretch for KMX stock, which has shed around 30% since its mid-September highs north of $80. More recently, the security breached long-term support near $67 in early November -- a region that has since emerged as resistance -- and tapped a 19-month low of $55.24 yesterday.

Options traders have been bracing for more losses from the retail stock. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), KMX's 10-day put/call volume ratio of 6.72 ranks in the 99th annual percentile, meaning puts have been bought to open over calls at a much quicker-than-usual clip.

Drilling down, the weekly 12/28 57.50-strike put has seen the biggest increase in open interest over the past 10 days, with more than 7,800 contracts added. Trade-Alert highlights a block of 7,800 that was likely bought to open on Tuesday for $1.30 apiece. If this is the case, breakeven for the put buyer at the close next Friday, Dec. 28, is $56.20 (strike less premium paid).

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