Progressive Stock Petering Out Following Analyst Downgrade

Puts have been picked up at a quicker-than-usual rate of late

Deputy Editor
Apr 19, 2021 at 10:43 AM
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The shares of Progressive Corp (NYSE:PGR) are down 0.8% to trade at $97.99 at last check, after a downgrade from Raymond James to "outperform" from "strong buy." Today's dip has the stock further faltering from its recent peak at the $101 level, which wasn't too far from its Oct. 13 all-time high of $102.05. 

Coming into today, nine of the 14 in coverage carried a "hold" or worse rating on the stock, with the remaining five a "strong buy." Meanwhile, Progressive stock's 12-month consensus price target of $102.60 -- which would mark a new all-time high -- is a 5.1% premium to current levels. 

Over in the options pits, PGR's 50-day put/call volume ratio of 0.54 at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) stands in the 94th percentile of readings from the past year. This indicates that while calls are outnumbering puts on an absolute basis, option traders are picking up puts at a much faster-than-usual rate. 

Now looks like a good time to weigh in with these options, too. The stock's Schaeffer's Volatility Index (SVI) of 2% stands higher than 4% of readings in its annual range, implying that options players are pricing in low volatility expectations at the moment.



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