Zulily, Inc. (ZU) Traders Place Hail Mary Bets

Zulily Inc (ZU) has dropped 44% in 2015

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Published on Mar 27, 2015 at 1:33 PM
Updated on Apr 20, 2015 at 5:32 PM

Over the past couple weeks at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), Zulily Inc (NASDAQ:ZU) calls have been changing hands at an extreme rate. Specifically, the e-commerce hub's 10-day call/put volume ratio across this trio of exchanges stands at an annual high of 83.50.

That trend is continuing today, with ZU calls trading at nearly triple the usual intraday clip, and about twice the pace of puts. Eleventh-hour bulls are active, as the stock's most popular option is the weekly 3/27 13.50-strike call, where new positions are being purchased. In other words, these call buyers anticipate ZU will muscle atop $13.50 by tonight's close, when the weekly series expires.

This is an ambitious bet, given the call's short life span. ZU -- up just 0.2% to trade at $13.05 -- would need to gain more than 3.4% in less than three hours for the option to move into the money.

Also, from a longer-term technical perspective, Zulily Inc (NASDAQ:ZU) has been a dud. Just three months into 2015, the shares have plummeted 44% -- largely the result of an earnings-induced bear gap in mid-February.


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