Most Active Options: Apple Inc. and Amazon.com, Inc.

Put buyers have been bombarding Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)

by Karee Venema

Published on Feb 29, 2016 at 12:55 PM
Updated on Jun 24, 2020 at 10:16 AM

The 20 stocks listed in the table below have attracted the highest total options volume during the past 10 trading days. Stocks 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 notable names are iPhone parent Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and e-commerce company Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN).

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Puts have been flying off the shelves in AAPL's options pits in recent weeks, with those purchasing the contracts continuing to get quite a deal. In fact, the stock's April 100 put holds the largest amount of open interest of any AAPL option, with 227,550 contracts currently in residence.

According to data from the International Securities Exchange (ISE), nearly 32,600 contracts have been bought to open here since early December. In other words, speculators are betting on AAPL to remain south of the century mark through back-month options expiration at the close on Friday, April 15.

Today, AAPL is making a run higher -- up 1% at $97.83, after CEO Tim Cook pledged to boost the company's quarterly dividend on an annual basis. In addition, Pacific Crest said Chinese smartphone demand seems to be improving, and sources say Apple has moved the launch of its new iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch to the week of March 21. Meanwhile, all eyes are on Apple Inc.'s impasse with the FBI, with Warren Buffett among the latest in a growing list of notable names to weigh in.

Put buyers have also been busy in AMZN's options arena. At the ISE, Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), the stock's 10-day put/call volume ratio of 1.10 sits above 89% of all other readings taken in the last 12 months. Simply stated, puts have been bought over calls at a faster clip just 11% of the time within the past year.

Looking back over the past two weeks, the stock's March 550 put has seen a notable increase in open interest. At the ISE, the majority of positions have been bought to open here throughout 2016. As such, speculative players are betting on AMZN to breach $550 by the close on Friday, March 18 -- when front-month options expire.

Similar to AAPL, AMZN is moving north today -- up 0.9% at $560.37. Earlier, the company said it has partnered up with British supermarket Morrisons for a grocery delivery service to Amazon.com, Inc. customers in the U.K.

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