Nike Stock Bucks Broad Market After USWNT World Cup Win

The US Women's National team defeated Netherlands yesterday 2-0

by Patrick Martin

Published on Jul 8, 2019 at 2:14 PM
Updated on Jul 8, 2019 at 3:50 PM

As most will know by now, the U.S. Women's National team won its second-straight and fourth overall FIFA Women's World Cup yesterday, defeating Netherlands 2-0. The event drew an 10.0 overnight metered market rating, more than the 2018 FIFA Men's World Cup Final between France and Croatia. 

The U.S. Soccer Federation is sponsored by Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE), which is conveniently the top stock on the Dow today by a wide margin. At last check, Nike stock was up 1.4% to trade at $88.05, on track for its third-straight win and trading at two-month highs. The shares have filled their early-May bear gap, and are now eyeing their April 18 all-time high of $90.

In the options pits, traders have been targeting puts. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), the stock's 10-day put/call volume ratio of 0.98 ranks in the 72nd annual percentile. So while calls have outnumbered puts on an absolute basis, the rate of put buying relative to call buying has been accelerated.

Shifting gears to today though, call trading has picked up. Leading the charge is the August 85 call, but there are also new positions being opened at the weekly 7/12 87-strike call. Buyers of the latter are clearly banking on Nike stock to hold above this newly established level by the time options expire later this week.

Now could be a good time to speculate with options. NKE's Schaeffer's Volatility Index (SVI) of 17% is in the 3rd percentile of its annual range. This means near-term options traders are pricing in relatively low volatility expectations.

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