Traders Flock to Global X FTSE Greece 20 ETF (GREK) Amid Ongoing Crisis

Global X FTSE Greece 20 ETF (NYSEARCA:GREK) options are seeing increased volume today

by Josh Selway

Published on Jul 6, 2015 at 11:56 AM

Given the growing uncertainty surrounding Greece's financial future, it's no surprise to see the Global X FTSE Greece 20 ETF (NYSEARCA:GREK) trading off again. Just today, the exchange-traded fund (ETF) has given back 7.6% to trade at $10.03, putting it 25% lower in 2015. And, as the situation in Greece intensifies, so does activity in the security's option pits.

On a closer look, both calls and puts are accelerated in GREK's options pits today. In fact, today's put and call volumes land in the 99th and 100th percentiles of their annual range, respectively.

The option that's seen the most action today is the September 14 call. However, it appears most of this activity may be from a trader selling to close the contracts. Elsewhere, GREK's July 10 put has seen notable activity, although it's unclear as to whether these options are being bought or sold.

One thing that's for sure is that speculative traders are paying relatively inflated prices for GREK's options. The security's Schaeffer's Volatility Index (SVI) of 131% is only 4 percentage points from an annual high. Also, the security's 30-day at-the-money implied volatility (IV) has jumped 2% to 119.7%, after earlier topping out at a 52-week peak.

Even with the security's dreadful performance on the charts, traders have been buying to open calls over puts at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX). GREK's 20-day call/put volume ratio across these exchanges stands at 2.08. This means over two calls have been bought to open for every put ​during the past two weeks.

As one would expect, pessimism has been growing outside the option pits, as well. Short interest on Global X FTSE Greece 20 ETF (NYSEARCA:GREK) exploded nearly 186% during the most recent reporting period.

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