WINDERMERE, Fla. ( Stockpickr) -- Professional traders running mutual funds and hedge funds don't just look at a stock's price moves; they also track big changes in volume activity. Often when above-average volume moves into an equity, it precedes a large spike in volatility.
Unusual volume can also be a major signal that hedge funds and momentum traders are piling into a stock ahead of a catalyst. These types of traders like to get in well before a large spike, so it's always a smart move to monitor unusual volume. That said, remember to combine trend and price action with unusual volume. Put them all together to help you decipher the next big trend for any stock.With that in mind, let's take a look at several stocks rising on unusual volume today. >>5 Earnings Stocks Poised to Pop Palo Alto Networks (PANW - Get Report) This company is engaged in providing network security with its innovative platform that allows enterprises, service providers, and government entities to secure their networks and safely enable the applications running on their networks. This stock is trading up 1% at $54.54 in recent trading. Today's Volume: 769,000 Average Volume: 729,018 Volume % Change: 118% From a technical perspective, PANW is moving modestly higher here right above its 50-day moving average of $52.42 with above-average volume. This move is quickly pushing shares of PANW within range of triggering a near-term breakout trade. That trade will hit if PANW manages to clear some near-term overhead resistance levels at $56 to $57.34 with high volume. At last check, PANW has hit an intraday high of $55.80 and volume is just starting to surpass its three-month average action of 729,018 shares. Traders should now look for long-biased trades in PANW as long as it's trending above today's low of $53.14, and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that hits near or above 729,018 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then PANW will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $60 to $64.