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Energy Bulls Drill for More in Noble

By Pete Najarian, co-founder of OptionMonster

NEW YORK -- Noble (NE) has performed well and Thursday option traders were targeting the offshore-drilling contractor.

OptionMonster's monitoring systems detected heavy call volume in the name, with 49,000 trading against fewer than 2,400 puts. Calls lock in the price where investors can buy shares, so they can generate significant leverage in the event of a rally.

One big transaction was in the February 40 and 42 contracts. A trader bought the 40s for $1.13 and sold the 42s for 47 cents, resulting in a net cost of 66 cents. If Noble's shares go to $42 on expiration, the trader will collect the $2 spread -- a gain of 203% over cost.

The stock closed at $39.61 Thursday, up 1.67%. Earlier in the week, the February 38 calls traded heavily for 91 cents and more than doubled by Thursday.

The company will report earnings results on Jan. 23. Argus has cut its estimates, but that hasn't stopped buyers from piling into Noble.

Najarian owns NE calls

This commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet guest contributor program. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of TheStreet or its management.

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