Most Active Weekly Options: Chevron Corporation and JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Weekly option traders have recently set their sights on Chevron Corporation (CVX) and JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM)

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Sep 11, 2015 at 11:06 AM

The 20 stocks listed in the table below have attracted the highest total weekly options volume during the past 10 trading days. Names highlighted are new to the list since the last time the study was run, and data is courtesy of Schaeffer's Senior Quantitative Analyst Rocky White. Two names of notable interest are blue chips Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX) and JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM).

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Like several of its sector peers, CVX was hit with negative analyst attention this morning. Specifically, Jefferies, Cowen and Company, and J.P. Morgan Securities each slashed their price targets on the stock -- though the latter also bumped its rating up to "overweight."

The skepticism doesn't come as much of a surprise, considering CVX's technical track record. Year-to-date, the shares have lost 32.4% to trade at $75.84, and have been pressured lower by their 20-day moving average since early May.

Nonetheless, option traders are holding out hope for CVX. The stock's 10-day call/put volume ratio across the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) is 2.65 -- with long calls more than doubling puts. This ratio also ranks in the 98th percentile of its annual range.

Echoing this glass-half-full options approach, Chevron Corporation's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.91 registers south of 94% of comparable readings taken in the past 12 months. In other words, short-term call open interest outweighs put open interest by a near-extreme margin, looking back 52 weeks. A capitulation among option bulls could pressure CVX even lower.

Meanwhile, JPM is down 0.8% today at $62.21 -- putting it back into negative year-to-date territory. Trading on this financial stock could get choppy soon, with the Fed expected to weigh in on interest rates next week. Like CVX, JPM was recently rejected by its descending 20-day trendline, which has capped the equity's attempted rallies since early August.

Option traders have shrugged off this less-than-impressive technical set-up. JPM's 50-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX call/put volume ratio of 1.45 outstrips more than three-quarters of comparable readings from the prior year. Likewise, its SOIR of 0.49 sits in the call-skewed 18th annual percentile. Should these bulls throw in the towel, JPMorgan Chase & Co. could suffer additional losses.

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