Options Bulls Pile on DISCA, T After Merger Announcement

Both equities have affordably priced premiums at the moment

Assistant Editor
May 17, 2021 at 11:04 AM
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The shares of Discovery Communications Inc. (NASDAQ:DISCA) are up 1.7% at $36.25 at last check, while AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) was last seen up 4.2% at $33.59, after the two companies announced a $43 billion merger. The deal will combine HBO, Warner Bros, HGTV, and TLC assets to create a media powerhouse, which will take on the likes of Netflix (NFLX) and Walt Disney (DIS). By the time the merger is completed in mid-2022, AT&T shareholders will own 71% of the new company, while Discovery shareholders will own 29%.

On the charts, Discovery Communications stock had been pacing for a stellar year, carving a channel of higher highs that eventually culminated in a March 19, record high of $78.14. However, a number of late March bear gaps knocked DISCA to the $34 level. Today's pop has helped the security break through overhead pressure at the $38 mark, though, and year-over-year shares are up 75.6%.

As far as AT&T stock is concerned, the merger news resulted in a bull gap that has the security trading at its highest level in over a year. The security has been climbing up the charts since April, however, with support from the 10-day moving average. Year-to-date, T boasts a 15.7% lead.

Options bulls are bombarding both equities in the options pits today. So far 32,000 DISCA calls and 205,000 T calls have already crossed the tape, which is nine and five times the intraday average, respectively. Discovery stock's most popular contract is the May 37.50 call, while AT&T stock's 34 call in the same monthly series is attracting the most attention, with new positions being opened at the latter. 

These traders are in luck, as premiums for both stocks are affordably priced at the moment. This per DISCA's Schaeffer's Volatility Index (SVI) of 48%, which stands higher than 13% of readings from the past 12 months. Meanwhile, T's SVI of 16% stands above just 5% of readings in its annual range.

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