Option Activity Alert: JPM, UPS

JPM – JPMorgan Chase & Co. – One options strategist expecting a near-term turnaround in JPMorgan’s shares purchased a call spread in the December contract today. Shares of the financial services firm are currently down 0.75% to stand at $37.62 in the final hour of the trading session. It looks like the investor picked up 7,000 calls at the December $38 strike at a premium of $0.80 each, and sold the same number of calls at the higher December $40 strike for a premium of $0.22 apiece. Net premium paid to initiate the bullish spread amounts to $0.58 per contract, thus positioning the trader to make money should shares in JPMorgan climb 2.55% to surpass the effective breakeven price of $38.58 by December expiration day. The call-spreader stands prepared to accumulate maximum potential profits of $1.42 per contract if shares rally 6.3% over the current price of $37.62 to trade above $40.00 by expiration day in the final month of the year.

UPS – United Parcel Service, Inc. – Bullish options traders are scooping up in- and out-of-the-money call options on UPS this afternoon. Shares of the package delivery services provider increased as much as 0.80% today to hit an intraday- and new 52-week high of $70.44. The stock is currently up 0.40% to arrive at $70.15 as of 1:50 pm. More than 25,700 option contracts have changed hands on UPS thus far today, with more than 4.25 calls exchanged on the stock for each single put contract that has traded. Near-term bulls purchased more than 1,400 now in-the-money calls at the December $70 strike for an average premium of $1.16 each. Optimists looked up to the higher December $72.5 strike where more than 13,000 calls changed hands versus previously existing open interest of 4,958 contracts. It looks like the majority of these contracts were purchased for an average premium of $0.33 apiece. Call buyers at this strike make money if shares in UPS jump 3.8% to trade above the average breakeven point to the upside at $72.83 by expiration day next month. The $72.5 strike calls expiring in January 2011 were also popular, with bullish players paying an average premium of $0.95 apiece to take ownership of more than 1,275 contracts. The surge in demand for calls on United Parcel Service, Inc. lifted the stock’s overall reading of options implied volatility 6.7% to 20.78% by 1:55 pm in New York.

About Andrew Wilkinson 1023 Articles

Affiliation: Interactive Brokers

Andrew Wilkinson is the senior market analyst at Interactive Brokers Group, where he provides daily commentary and analysis on U.S. equity options trading throughout the trading day. Andrew provides webinars designed to explain option-related trading scenarios covering futures, fixed income, forex and equities.

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