GIS Gains on Q2 Earnings, Revenue Beat

Put volume is picking up today, however

Deputy Editor
Dec 17, 2020 at 11:11 AM
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The shares of General Mills, Inc. (NYSE:GIS) are up 0.1% at $58.99 following a fiscal second-quarter earnings and revenue beat. The company cited strong pet food and baking product sales during the pandemic, and projected this demand trend to remain at similar levels going forward. 

On the shares, GIS has been middling since a sharp pullback from its four-year highs in early September. While the shares have been on the road to recovery, thanks in part to support at the 320-day moving average, the $62 level still looms large as a potential rejection area for the stock. Year-to-date, GIS sports an 11.2% lead. 

Analysts have remained mum on this earnings news, but a look back shows sentiment is mostly lukewarm. Just four brokerage firms call GIS a "strong buy," compared to eight "hold" or worse ratings. Meanwhile, the 12-month consensus price target of $62.42 is a 7.8% premium to current levels. 

Meanwhile, calls are outnumbering puts at roughly a four-to-one basis during the past two weeks, per data on the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX). This ratio stands higher than 66% of readings from the past year, implying that these bullish bets have been picked up at a slightly quicker clip than usual. 

A look at today's trading shows 5,309 calls and 4,437 puts across the tape so far, which is nine times the intraday average, with put volume pacing for its top annual percentile. The most popular position is the weekly 12/18 60-strike call, followed by the January 2021 55-strike put. The popularity of the latter suggests these traders are expecting the underlying stock to drop back below the $55 mark by the time these contracts expire on Jan. 15 of the new year. 




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