Most Active Weekly Options: Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN)

Skeptical traders are taking two different paths toward Amazon.com, Inc.

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Published on Nov 4, 2014 at 12:02 PM
Updated on Apr 20, 2015 at 5:32 PM

The 20 stocks listed in the table below are the names that have attracted the highest weekly options volume during the past 10 trading days. Those highlighted are new to the list since the last time the study was run, and data is courtesy of Schaeffer's Senior Quantitative Analyst Rocky White. One name of notable interest today is Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN), where short-term traders are gambling on the stock's end-of-week finish.

Most Active Weekly Options Table

Amazon.com, Inc. is off 1.5% around midday at $301.10, pressured lower by a successful turn in the earnings confessional from competitor Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA). Longer term, AMZN is now 24.5% south of breakeven on a year-to-date basis.

In today's options pits, short-term strikes are in demand, per the stock's 30-day at-the-money implied volatility, which is up 2.4% to 24.1%. In fact, each of AMZN's 10 most active options expire within the next three weeks.

Taking the top two positions are the weekly 11/7 300-strike put and 305-strike call. The puts are being bought to open, suggesting the traders anticipate the shares will breach the round-number $300 level by Friday's close -- when the weekly series expires. Conversely, the calls are being sold to open, as speculators bank on a short-term technical ceiling for the security.

Given Amazon.com, Inc.'s (NASDAQ:AMZN) on-chart struggles, it's no surprise to see options traders betting bearishly. Sentiment is different among the brokerage bunch, however, as 60% of covering analysts rate the equity a "buy" or better. Plus, the stock's consensus 12-month price target of $353.61 stands at a lofty 17.4% premium to current trading levels. From a contrarian perspective, this could potentially set up AMZN for an additional round of downgrades and/or price-target cuts.


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