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.

Major moves in volume can signal unusual activity, such as insider buying or selling -- or buying or selling by "superinvestors."

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 recently.

Omega Protein

Omega Protein (OME) develops, produces and delivers healthy products to enhance the nutritional integrity of foods, dietary supplements and animal feeds worldwide. This stock is trading up 2.7% to $12.97 in Monday's trading session.

Monday's Volume: 166,000
Three-Month Average Volume: 138,311
Volume % Change: 120%

From a technical perspective, OME is jumping notably higher here right above some key near-term support levels at $12.56 to its 200-day moving average of $12.48 with above-average volume. This spike higher on Monday has also started to push shares of OME back above its 50-day moving average of $12.83. This jump to the upside is now starting to push shares of OME within range of triggering a near-term breakout trade above some key overhead resistance levels. That trade will hit if OME manages to clear some near-term overhead resistance levels at $13.57 to $14 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in OME as long as it's trending above its 200-day moving average of $12.48 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that registers near or above 138,311 shares. If that breakout begins soon, then OME will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $14.50 to its 52-week high of $15.92, or even $17 to $18.

Kennametal

Kennametal (KMT) - Get Report manufactures and supplies tooling, engineered components, and advanced materials consumed in production processes worldwide. This stock is trading up 2.9% at $36.26 in Monday's trading session.

Monday's Volume: 860,000
Three-Month Average Volume: 746,636
Volume % Change: 126%

From a technical perspective, KMT is jumping higher here right above some near-term support levels at $35 and above its 50-day moving average of $34.44 with above-average volume. This stock has been uptrending a bit over the last two months, with shares moving higher from its low of $32.15 to its recent high of $36.59. During that uptrend, shares of KMT have been making mostly higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. That move has now pushed shares of KMT within range of triggering a major breakout trade above some key overhead resistance levels. That trade will hit if KMT manages to take out some key overhead resistance levels at $36.60 to its 200-day moving average of $37.60 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in KMT as long as it's trending above some key near-term support levels at $35 or above its 50-day at $34.44 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that hits near or above 746,636 shares. If that breakout begins soon, then KMT will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $40.74 to $42.

Koppers

Koppers (KOP) - Get Report provides carbon compounds, and chemicals and treated wood products and services in the U.S. and internationally. This stock is trading up 5.5% at $23.85 in Monday's trading session.

Monday's Volume: 182,000
Three-Month Average Volume: 245,525
Volume % Change: 50%

From a technical perspective, KOP is ripping sharply higher here right above some near-term support at $22.09 with decent upside volume flows. This jump to the upside on Monday has now pushed shares of KOP into breakout territory, since the stock has started to flirt with some near-term overhead resistance at $23.81. Market players should now look for a continuation move to the upside in the short-term if KOP can manage to clear Monday's intraday high of $24.25 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in KOP as long as it's trending above $23 or above Monday's intraday low of $22.81 and then once it sustains a move or close above Monday's intraday high of $24.25 with volume that hits near or above 245,525 shares. If that move gets started soon, then KOP will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $26.44 to $26.67, or even its 200-day moving average of $27.65 to possibly $30.

SM Energy

SM Energy (SM) - Get Report, an independent energy company, engages in the acquisition, exploration, development, and production of crude oil and condensate, natural gas, and natural gas liquids in onshore North America. This stock is trading up 1.7% at $57.17 in Monday's trading session.

Monday's Volume: 1.49 million
Three-Month Average Volume: 1.64 million
Volume % Change: 125%

From a technical perspective, SM is spiking modestly higher here and flirting with its 200-day moving average of $56.83 with above-average volume. This stock has been uptrending strong for the last five months, with shares moving higher from its low of $29.38 to its recent high of $59.23. During that uptrend, shares of SM have been making mostly higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. This move to the upside on Monday is now starting to push shares of SM within range of triggering a near-term breakout trade. That trade will hit if SM manages to take out some key overhead resistance levels at $59.23 to around $62 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in SM as long as it's trending above some key near-term support levels at $55 or at $53.17 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that hits near or above 1.64 million shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then SM will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $70 to $72.

This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held no positions in the stocks mentioned.