Puts Pop as Russia ETF Goes for Another Breakout

RSX options volume is at four times the daily average

Oct 24, 2019 at 2:52 PM
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The VanEck Vectors Russia ETF (RSX) has been in focus multiple times in 2019, due to geopolitical developments, and the exchange-traded fund (ETF) is again making a big move today. RSX was last seen trading up 1% at $23.83, pacing for its best close in a month, likely thanks to buzz around Russia's agreement with Turkey to share Syrian territory, following the withdrawal of U.S. troops. As such, RSX options are flying off the shelves today.

The ETF is testing the $24 region that has blocked breakout attempts in 2019, though the fund is still up 27% year-to-date. However, some RSX options traders could be betting on a pullback in the coming months.

More than 12,000 options overall have traded today -- roughly four times the daily average. Leading the way is the January 2020 23-strike put, where traders may be buying to open positions. If so, they'd be looking for RSX to fall below the $23 level by the time the contracts expire in January.

Looking back at recent action at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), traders have mostly been buying to open RSX calls, with the 10-day call/put volume ratio coming in at 1.21. There's been a big build-up in open interest in the November series at the 23, 24, and 25 calls, which could act as an added layer of options-related resistance in the near term.

rsx stock oct 24


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