Heavy Options Trading on GE Stock After New Low

The former Dow component just hit a nine-year low

Sep 24, 2018 at 1:58 PM
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General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) options are trading at a blistering pace today, after the stock earlier hit a fresh nine-year low of $11.60, down roughly 4% so far. More than 243,00 calls have traded, compared to an average daily volume of just 85,000. Put volume is accelerated, too, for what it's worth, but the activity is not nearly as dramatic as on the call side.

Looking closer, Trade-Alert is highlighting heavy buy-to-open activity at the March 14 call. This contract is by far the most popular today, with roughly 63,000 options traded -- more than double the runner-up. For those opening new bullish positions, the goal is for GE shares to rally back above the $14 level by March 2019 options expiration -- a nearly 20% gain from the shares' current standing of $11.70. 

Meanwhile, data also hints at buy-to-open action at the weekly 9/28 12-strike call, as well as the weekly 10/5 12-strike call. These bulls would be eyeing a much quicker, albeit much smaller, rebound for the former Dow component, with expiration for the respective contracts set for the following two Fridays.

As for other noteworthy activity, all signs point to sell-to-open activity at the March 17 call. This would indicate traders see the $17 level as a technical ceiling for the equity in the months to come.

But going back to the call buyers, this activity isn't uncommon from GE options traders. In fact, call buying has almost tripled put buying during the past 10 days at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX). Taking a broader view, peak call open interest rests at the January 2019 20-strike call, followed by the 15-strike call from the same series.



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