Options Traders Blast Blue-Chip Retailer After Earnings

Options volume is running at seven times the intraday average

Deputy Editor
Feb 17, 2022 at 10:15 AM
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Blue-chip retailer Walmart Inc (NYSE:WMT) stepped into the earnings confessional this morning, reporting a fourth-quarter profit and revenue that were above Wall Street's estimates. In addition, the company reiterated its sunny long-term forecast, raised its dividend by 2%, and announced plans to repurchase $10 billion worth of its own stock in fiscal 2023.

In response to the earnings event, options traders today are piling on Walmart stock. Already, 28,000 calls and 11,000 puts have crossed the tape -- seven times the intraday average with volume running in the 99th annual percentile. The February 140 call is the most popular, followed by the 136-strike call in the same series, with positions being opened at the latter. 

The upbeat earnings news has WMT moving higher this morning, last seen up 2.2% at $136.42, as it battle pressure from both its year-over-year and year-to-date breakeven marks. Meanwhile, an early-February rejection at the 60-day moving average pushed the equity back towards $133 -- Walmart stock's lowest level of trading since March 2021.


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