DELAFIELD, Wis. ( 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.>>5 Toxic Stocks to Sell Before It's Too Late With that in mind, let's take a look at several stocks rising on unusual volume today. Canadian Natural Resources Canadian Natural Resources ( CNQ) engages in the exploration, development, production and marketing of crude oil, natural gas liquids, and natural gas. This stock closed up 2.5% at $33.15 in Wednesday's trading session. Wednesday's Volume: 4.53 million
Three-Month Average Volume: 2.03 million
Volume % Change: 115% >>5 Stocks Set to Soar on Bullish Earnings From a technical perspective, CNQ jumped higher here and broke out above some near-term overhead resistance at $32.96 with above-average volume. This move is quickly pushing shares of CNQ within range of triggering a big breakout trade. That trade will hit if CNQ manages to take out Wednesday's high of $33.41 to its 52-week high at $33.64 with high volume. Traders should now look for long-biased trades in CNQ as long as it's trending above Wednesday's low of $32.45 or its 50-day at $31.69 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that hits near or above 2.03 million shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then CNQ will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are $38 to $40. American Woodmark American Woodmark ( AMWD) manufactures and distributes kitchen cabinets and vanities for the remodeling and new home construction markets. This stock closed up 2.2% at $35.02 in Wednesday's trading session.