Airbnb Stock Slips on Analyst Downgrade

There's a slight uptick in bearish options activity today

Deputy Editor
Oct 3, 2023 at 10:38 AM
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Shares of short-term home-rental concern Airbnb Inc (NASDAQ:ABNB) are 3.9% lower at $131.22 this morning after a bear note from KeyBanc Capital Markets. The brokerage firm downgraded ABNB to "sector weight" from "overweight" and removed its $160 price target, citing travel demand easing following the post-pandemic boom as well as an elevated average daily rate (ADR) risk. 

On the charts, ABNB just dipped below its 40-day moving average and the $135 level, both of which provided pressure during the stock's August dip. Already down nearly 4% to begin the new quarter, Airbnb stock still sports a 54% year-to-date gain.

Coming into today, covering brokerages were split on ABNB. Of the 28 firms in question, 13 still recommend a "buy" or better rating, while 15 say "hold" or worse. Additionally, short interest is moving higher -- up 30.1% in the most recent reporting period -- and the 25.64 million shares sold short make up 6.2% of the stock's available float. 

Today's options pits are experiencing a slight uptick in bearish activity, with the 6,062 puts traded already accounting for double the intraday average volume. This penchant for bearish bets was already in place, however, per the equity's 10-day put/call volume ratio of 2.03 at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) that stands in the 97th percentile of its annual range.

Echoing this, Airbnb stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 1.38, which ranks in the 81st percentile of annual readings, points towards a put-bias amongst short-term premium traders. Those looking to join these options players can do so for a bargain, as ABNB's Schaeffer's Volatility Index (SVI) of 36% stands higher than just 11% of annual readings -- an indicator that volatility expectations are low at the moment.


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