Marriott Put Volume Jumps After Hack

MAR stock is reeling after the hotel chain said a Starwood database was breached

by Andrea Kramer

Published on Nov 30, 2018 at 10:29 AM

The shares of hotel chain Marriott International Inc (NASDAQ:MAR) are 6.4% lower to trade at $113.99, after the company warned that the personal data -- including possible payment information and passport details -- of about 500 million guests was exposed. Hackers apparently began tapping the Starwood guest database in 2014, though the breach wasn't discovered until after an internal security alert on Sept. 8. The New York Attorney General's office is investigating, as the company was apparently obligated to report the breach to the office immediately.

Prior to today, MAR stock had been in a channel of lower highs and lows since peaking at $149.21 in late January. The security touched an annual low of $106.96 in late October, but upward momentum stalled in the $125 area on more than one occasion.

Analyst downgrades could be a possibility, though Marriott hasn't yet given estimates as to the possible financial impact of the data breach. Even before today's turn lower, eight of 17 analysts maintained "buy" or better opinions, with not a "sell" to be found.

Meanwhile, several recent option buyers are likely cheering. On the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), the stock's 10-day put/call volume ratio of 1.25 is in the 73rd percentile of its annual range. That indicates that buyers have picked up MAR puts over calls at a faster-than-usual clip in the past two weeks.

Within the first hour of trading, MAR has already seen nearly 7,276 puts cross the tape -- 13 times the average intraday pace. It looks like traders are expecting more downside for the shares today, with possible buy-to-open activity detected at the weekly 11/30 114- and 115-strike puts, which expire today.

Signal Says Take Profits on This Pharma Stock
The shares are testing a familiar ceiling on the charts
What to Make of the S&P Death Cross
It's the index's first death cross in nearly three years
2 Tech Stocks That Could Fade Into the New Year
Tech stocks have been under heavy scrutiny in recent months
From Schaeffer's Pro Traders
Weekly Options Secrets Revealed

Direct from our Schaeffer's traders, your FREE guide to winning with weekly options!


Partnercenter


NEW! Explore Schaeffer’s Partners' deals and get connected to top online brokerages with deals tailored exclusively for our readers.  Get answers to your questions regarding transfer fees, commission rates, programs and available discounts related to online trading services.

MORE | MARKETstories


The Shortcut to Earnings Season Profits
A free tool can help traders bank big this earnings season.
Tariff Buzz Gives Ford a Lift
China announced that it would temporarily halt additional tariffs on U.S.-made autos
XPO Logistics Stock Bounces on $1B Share Buyback News
It's been a whirlwind week for the shipping expert
This May Be the 21st Century "Oil Boom"
U.S. production of lithium is set to increase 1,300% in the next 2 years.