Put Volume Explodes on Conatus Pharmaceuticals Inc. (CNAT)

Conatus Pharmaceuticals Inc (CNAT) put volume is running at 12 times the expected intraday clip


Published on Jan 15, 2015 at 1:58 PM
Updated on Apr 20, 2015 at 5:32 PM

Conatus Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:CNAT) is hovering around breakeven today at $5.37. Despite this ho-hum price action, puts are flying off the shelves at 12 times the average intraday rate. By the numbers, 5,394 puts are on the tape, compared to roughly 300 calls.

Almost all of the put volume transpired as one block of 5,000 contracts at the January 2015 10 strike. According to data from the International Securities Exchange (ISE), these deep in-the-money positions were sold to close ahead of this Friday night's expiration.

Technically speaking, CNAT has had a brutal year, exacerbated by a recent gap lower on disappointing drug trial results. Year-over-year, the stock has lost more than half of its value.

Given these technical struggles, Conatus Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:CNAT) puts have been targeted of late, relative to calls. The stock's 10-day ISE, Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) put/call volume ratio of 1.99 indicates puts have been bought to open at twice the rate of calls over the last two weeks.

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