Option Bears Pile On MannKind Corporation (MNKD)

MannKind Corporation (MNKD) is seeing buy-to-open activity at its May 5.50 put

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Apr 24, 2015 at 1:38 PM

MannKind Corporation (NASDAQ:MNKD) is having a rough day, down 2.8% at $4.82 -- bringing its year-to-date deficit to 7.7%. Options traders have responded, too, as the biopharmaceutical firm's puts are running at a slightly faster-than-usual clip.

Digging deeper, MNKD's most active option is the May 5.50 put. It looks like speculators are purchasing to open these in-the-money positions, expecting the stock to extend its losses through the close on Friday, May 15 -- when front-month options expire. Based on the volume-weighted average price (VWAP) of $0.88, breakeven on the transaction is $4.62 (strike less VWAP).

By no means are these the only traders that are bearish toward MNKD. A hefty 36.6% of the equity's float is sold short. At the stock's typical daily trading levels, it would take more than one month to repurchase all of these bearish bets.

A majority of the analysts covering MannKind Corporation (NASDAQ:MNKD) also rate it a "hold" or worse. However, the security's average 12-month price target of $7.78 represents expected upside of 61% to MNKD's current perch, which could pave the way for a round of price-target cuts.

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