ORCL – Oracle Corp. – Investors are employing a number of diverse options trading strategies, some bullish and others bearish, on the software company this afternoon. Oracle’s shares are currently up 0.70% at $22.64 as of 12:30 pm ET, but earlier increased 2.05% to an intraday high of $22.94. Near-term sentiment on the software developer looks fairly bullish with investors picking up approximately 7,200 calls at the September $23 strike for an average premium of $0.37 each. Investors buying the calls outright are prepared to make money if Oracle’s shares rally 3.2% over the current price of $22.64 to exceed the average breakeven price of $23.37 by September expiration. Optimism spread to the higher September $24 strike where it looks like traders purchased 1,500 calls at an average premium of $0.10 apiece. Traders long the higher-strike calls are poised to profit should ORCL shares increase 6.5% in the next couple of weeks to surpass the breakeven point to the upside at $24.10. We note that open interest at the September $23 and $24 strikes is sufficient to cover call volume traded during the session so far, which suggests buyers could potentially be closing short positions rather than initiating outright bullish bets on the stock. Finally, Oracle Corp. puts were also in use today by investors populating the January 2011 contract. It looks like some traders employed debit put spreads, buying about 3,000 puts at the January 2011 $22.5 strike for premium of $1.61 each, and selling roughly the same number of contracts at the lower January 2011 $20 strike at a premium of $0.76 apiece. Net premium paid to establish the bearish spread amounts to an average of $0.85 per contract. Thus, put players are positioned to profit if Oracle’s shares reverse course and decline 4.4% to slip beneath the average breakeven point at $21.65 by expiration day next year.
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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