Options Bears Chime in on Blue Chip Despite Bull Notes

Options traders have switched sentiment from calls to puts today

Assistant Editor
Jul 27, 2020 at 2:17 PM
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The shares of Proctor & Gamble Co (NYSE:PG) are flat today, last seen trading at $126.21, despite the Dow stock receiving two price-target hikes from Deutsche Bank and Jefferies to $138 and $148, respectively. Ahead of PG's fiscal fourth-quarter report on July 30, the analyst in coverage at Jefferies cited strength in the U.S. and China as well as weakness in the U.S. dollar. 

On the charts, PG is a chip-shot away from its February 6 record high of $128.09. With underlying support at the 10-day moving average, the equity is up 9.5% in the past monthly period, as it faces off with its year-to-date breakeven level.

PG July 27

Today's bull notes reflect the overall optimism toward PG, with 10 out of 12 in coverage at a "buy" or better and the remaining two at a lukewarm "hold" rating. Meanwhile, the 12-month consensus target price of $130.69 coming into today is a 3.7% premium to current levels. 

In the options pits today, 4,043 puts and 2,422 calls have crossed the tape so far. Most popular is the August 110-strike put, where new positions are being opened. This bearish sentiment is a quick turnaround from the past 10 weeks, where 2.33 calls were bought for every put at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX). 

Looking at PG's earnings history, there's a precedent for muted post-earnings reactions. The last eight quarters have produced an average post-earnings move of 3.3%. This time around, options traders are pricing in a slightly larger 4.4% pop for Thursday.

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