Put Traders Blast Surging WageWorks Stock

WAGE stock is pacing toward its best day ever

by Karee Venema

Published on Mar 14, 2019 at 2:15 PM
Updated on Mar 14, 2019 at 2:18 PM

WageWorks Inc (NYSE:WAGE) stock is trading at the top of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) today, up 29.5% at $38.69, on news the flexible benefits provider will file the bulk of its delayed financial reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) by the evening of Tuesday, March 19. The company's fiscal 2018 report will still be delayed.

WAGE stock is on track for its best day ever, but still remains 20% lower on a year-over-year basis. Plus, the shares have run out of steam in the round $40 region, while just above here is the $41-$42 zone -- home to the equity's 200-day moving average and its mid-September post-bear gap levels.

wage stock daily chart march 14

In the options pits, short-term traders are more put-heavy than usual, per the stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 1.03, which ranks in the 77th annual percentile. Plus, the equity's top-heavy 10-day put/call volume ratio of 2.84 at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) indicates recent activity has been of the traditional bearish variety.

Today, however, it looks as if speculators may be using near-term puts to target a near-term floor for the stock. Amid accelerated trading -- the 15,000 options traded so far is 14 times what's typically seen at this point -- sell-to-open activity has been detected at the April 25 put. If this is the case, put writers expect WAGE to hold above $25 through the close on Thursday, April 18.

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