OXY Drops on Employee Buyout Buzz

OXY has struggled with the massive losses taken by the oil sector

Assistant Editor
May 13, 2020 at 10:32 AM
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The shares of Occidental Petroleum Corp (NYSE:OXY) are down 4.5% at $13.91 at last check, following news that the company is offering their employees voluntary buyouts over the next two weeks -- citing issues and the massive decline in oil prices as a result of coronavirus. OXY posted a roughly $2 billion quarterly loss just last week and has had to slash capital spending fiercely in order to preserve cash. 

Not too far from its March 18, all-time low on $9, Occidental has been trading sideways of late, with overhead pressure recently emerging at the descending 50-day moving average. Though OXY is still clinging to a one-week gain, year-to-date, the stock is down 64.6%. 

The majority of analysts are bearish on OXY, with 18 calling the equity a "hold" or worse, and only one with a "strong buy" rating. Meanwhile, the 12-month consensus target price of $15.45 is an 11% premium to current levels.

In the options pits, puts have picked up in popularity. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), 1.39 puts have been bought for every call in the past 10 days. This ratio sits in the 100th percentile of its annual range, suggesting the appetite for long puts hasn't been bigger in the last 12 months.  

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