Eleventh-Hour Bears Rush Struggling Tesla Motors, Inc. (TSLA)

Tesla Motors Inc (TSLA) has been trending lower for months now

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Published on Mar 27, 2015 at 12:29 PM
Updated on Apr 20, 2015 at 5:32 PM

Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) has been stair-stepping lower for some time now, dropping 36.5% since its record high of $291.42 on Sept. 4. This trend is continuing today, with the shares off 2.7% at $185.21, trading at their lowest levels since early May. Options traders are wasting little time to bet against the struggling electric automaker, as 53,000 puts have changed hands so far today -- twice the amount normally see at this point in the day.

Specifically, TSLA's short-term contracts are in high demand, with nine of its 10 most popular contracts expiring at the close today. Leading the way is the weekly 3/27 185-strike put, which it appears traders are buying to open, hoping to see the stock fall below $185 by today's close. TSLA's current intraday low stands at $184.13.

Today's put buying is nothing out of the ordinary for TSLA speculators, as they've taken a pessimistic stance as the stock drops further. During the past two weeks at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), the equity has tallied a put/call volume ratio of 1.15 -- higher than 90% of all such readings from the past year.

Skepticism on Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) can be found elsewhere, as well. For starters, short interest now accounts for over a quarter of the stock's float, after increasing 6.7% in the latest reporting period. Plus, it seems analysts could now be losing faith in the shares.


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