LinkedIn Corp (LNKD) Option Bulls Make a Rare Appearance

LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD) is seeing a rare crop of call buyers today

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Sep 18, 2015 at 2:33 PM

LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD) is shrugging off today's broad-market headwinds, up nearly 2% at $200.79. The positive movement is luring traders to the social media stock's option pits, where calls are being exchanged at triple the average intraday rate.

Diving right in, it appears a number of last-minute speculators are betting bullishly on LNKD. Specifically, the equity's four most active strikes are the September 197.50, 200, 202.50, and 205 calls -- all of which expire at today's closing bell. In short, these call buyers anticipate the shares will extend their lead over -- or topple -- the strikes by 4 p.m.

While it's common for analysts to show LNKD some love, it's pretty rare for option traders. Over the last two weeks, speculators have bought to open 1.23 puts for every call, according to data from the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX). The corresponding put/call volume ratio sits just 1 percentage point from a 12-month peak, suggesting a stronger-than-usual appetite for bearish bets over bullish.

Based on the charts, there are plenty of reasons to be cautious when it comes to LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD). Year-to-date, the stock has given back 12.5%. What's more, today's advance stalled at LNKD's 80-day moving average, which acted as support earlier in 2015, and may now be reversing roles to function as resistance.

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