Options Traders Eye Bigger Gains for Fitbit Stock

FIT options traders have been unusually call-skewed in recent months

Karee Venema
Aug 27, 2018 at 3:11 PM
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Amid a broader rally in tech stocks, Fitbit Inc (NYSE:FIT) is trading up 4% at $6.28. The surge has sparked a rush of activity in FIT's options pits, with total volume running in the 99th annual percentile. The action appears to be one-sided, too, with call volume of 39,514 contracts dwarfing the 5,597 puts traded so far -- and representing four times the intraday norm.

Most of the activity has centered at the weekly 8/31 series, which expires at this Friday's close. Speculators appear to be purchasing new positions at the 5-strike, 6-strike, and 6.50-strike calls -- with more than 20,000 contracts already traded at the former -- betting on Fitbit shares to extend today's rally into the holiday weekend.

This call-skewed trading just echoes the withstanding trend seen among Fitbit options traders. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), the stock's 50-day call/put volume ratio of 6.28 ranks in the 100th annual percentile, meaning calls have been bought to open over puts at a quicker-than-usual clip.

While some of this could be at the hands of bullish options traders, it's also possible short sellers have been buying out-of-the-money calls to hedge against any upside risk. Short interest on FIT jumped 14.5% in the most recent reporting period to 40.56 million shares -- a whopping 21% of the security's available float.

Looking at the charts, today's surge extends the stock's recent bounce near $5.14, home to its negative 10% year-to-date return. In fact, FIT is now 10% higher in 2018, and is on track to close north of its 50-day moving average for the first time since July 19.

fitbit stock daily chart aug 27


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