Option Bears Attack Yandex NV (YNDX) as Russian Stocks Slide

Yandex NV hit a record low earlier

Digital Content Group
Dec 16, 2014 at 11:26 AM
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Yandex NV (NASDAQ:YNDX) is getting pummeled around midday, down 9.5% at $16 as worries intensify over the continued slide in the Russian ruble. In fact, shares of the Internet search provider touched a record low of $15.02 earlier, landing the stock on the short-sale restricted list for a second straight day. Meanwhile, put volume is surging as traders search for alternative ways to bet bearishly on the equity.

Digging deeper, YNDX puts are crossing at 11 times the expected intraday pace, and the security's 30-day at-the-money implied volatility has charged 24.1% higher to 79% -- a new annual high. The most active option is the December 15 put, which traders are buying to open in the hopes of extended losses through the end of the week, when front-month contracts expire.

This propensity for put buying, relative to call buying, is business as usual for Yandex NV (NASDAQ:YNDX). The stock's 50-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) put/call volume ratio of 0.44 ranks near the top quartile of its annual range, suggesting speculators have had a stronger-than-usual appetite lately for bearish bets over bullish.


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