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McDermott Options Jump on Buyout Rumor

Stocks in this article: MDR PTR

By Jon "DRJ" Najarian, co-founder of OptionMonster.

McDermott International (MDR) is seeing heavy options activity amid rumors that PetroChina (PTR) is interested in buying the engineering and construction company.

Normal call activity for McDermott in the 30 days has been 5,100 contracts for a full session, but today some 22,400 contracts traded in the first 30 minutes alone, according to OptionMonster's real-time tracking systems. The feeding frenzy saw 8,500 calls change hands at the May 20 strike against open interest of just 1,506.

McDermott shares are up nearly 5% on the session to $16.68 in midday trading.

McDermott works in offshore oil and gas construction and power generation. The space has been hot lately, especially with interest in Calpin (CPN) and Mirant (MIR) in the power industry and Halliburton (HAL) in oil and gas. Some of today's chatter has McDermott and PetroChina in late-stage acquisition talks.

The writer has long positions in McDermott.

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