Okta Stock Slips on Security Breach, Analyst Downgrade

Truist Securities downgraded the stock to "hold" from "buy"

Deputy Editor
Mar 23, 2022 at 10:49 AM
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The shares of Okta Inc (NASDAQ:OKTA) are down 7.4% after a digital security breach. The IT company said late Thursday that up to 366 customers were potentially impacted by the hack. Following the news, Truist Securities downgraded OKTA to "hold" from "buy" with a steep price-target cut to $170 from $270. 

The stock has been steadily moving lower since December, with close pressure from the 40-day moving average. Year-to-date, the equity is down 31.5%. 

Puts have been more popular than usual in the options pits. In the last 10 weeks, 1.11 puts have been bought for every call at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX). This ratio stands higher than 85% of readings from the past year, indicating long puts being picked up at a faster-than-usual rate. 

Today there has been a slight shift towards calls, with 5,231 calls and 4,275 puts across the tape so far -- double the volume typically seen at this point. The weekly 3/25 160-strike call is the most popular, followed by the 145-strike put in the same weekly series, with positions being bought to open at both.

It's also worth noting that short interest has been on the rise, up 14.4% during the most recent reporting period. The 6.84 million shares sold short now account for 4.6% of the stock's available float, or over three day's worth of pent-up buying power. 



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