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.

Grifols

Grifols (GRFS) - Get Grifols, S.A. Sponsored ADR Class B Report , a specialty biopharmaceutical company, develops, manufactures and distributes a range of plasma derivative products primarily in the European Union, Spain, the U.S., Canada and internationally. This stock is trading up 2.7% to $34.85 in Monday's trading session.

Monday's Volume: 310,000
Three-Month Average Volume: 501,795
Volume % Change: 149%

From a technical perspective, GRFS is spiking notably higher here back above its 50-day moving average of $34.38 with decent upside volume flows. This stock recently formed a double bottom chart pattern, after shares found some buying interest at $31.53 and $31.46. Following that bottom, shares of GRFS have now started to uptrend move back above its 50-day moving average. That move is now quickly pushing shares of GRFS within range of triggering a near-term breakout trade. That trade will hit if GRFS manages to take out some key near-term overhead resistance levels at $35.06 to $35.80 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in GRFS as long as it's trending above some key near-term support levels at $33 or at $32 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that registers near or above 501,795 shares. If that breakout develops soon, then GRFS will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $37.33 to its 200-day moving average of $37.58. Any high-volume move above those levels will then give GRFS a chance to tag or take out $40.

Novo Nordisk

Novo Nordisk (NVO) - Get Novo Nordisk A/S Sponsored ADR Class B Report engages in the discovery, development, manufacture and marketing of pharmaceutical products primarily in Denmark. This stock is trading up 2.5% at $45.01 in Monday's trading session.

Monday's Volume: 1.97 million
Three-Month Average Volume: 1.55 million
Volume % Change: 225%

From a technical perspective, NVO is trending higher here back above its 200-day moving average of $44.86 with strong upside volume flows. This stock has been uptrending a bit over the last month, with shares moving higher from its low of $41.72 to its recent high of $45.43. During that uptrend, shares of NVO have been making mostly higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. That move is now quickly pushing shares of NVO within range of triggering a big breakout trade. That trade will hit if NVO manages to clear some key near-term overhead resistance levels at $45.43 to $46.53 with high volume.

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Traders should now look for long-biased trades in NVO as long as it's trending above some key near-term support levels at its 50-day moving average of $44.21 or above some more key support at $43.50 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that registers near or above 1.55 million shares. If that breakout materializes soon, then NVO will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $48 to its 52-week high at $49.11. Any high-volume move above $49.11 will then give NVO a chance to tag or take out $50.

Total

Total (TOT) - Get Total SA Sponsored ADR Class B Report , together with its subsidiaries, operates as an oil and gas company worldwide. This stock is trading up 3% at $52.77 in Monday's trading session.

Monday's Volume: 1.88 million
Three-Month Average Volume: 1.90 million
Volume % Change: 144%

From a technical perspective, TOT is spiking notably higher here with strong upside volume flows. This stock has been uptrending over the last month, with shares moving higher from its low of $47.31 to its intraday high on Monday at $52.82. During that uptrend, shares of TOT have been consistently making higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. That move has now pushed shares of TOT within range of triggering a near-term breakout trade above some key overhead resistance levels. That trade will hit if TOT manages to take out some key near-term overhead resistance levels at its 50-day moving average of $52.99 to more resistance at $53.51 to $54 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in TOT as long as it's trending above some key near-term support at around $50 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that registers near or above 1.90 million shares. If that breakout kicks off soon, then TOT will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $58 to $60, or even its 200-day moving average of $61.79.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCAU) - Get Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. Report designs, engineers, manufactures, distributes and sells vehicles and components and production systems. This stock is trading up 4.6% at $13.49 in Monday's trading session.

Monday's Volume: 5.66 million
Three-Month Average Volume: 7.76 million
Volume % Change: 136%

From a technical perspective, FCAU is ripping sharply higher here with decent upside volume flows. This stock has been uptrending strong over the last month and change, with shares moving higher from its low of $11.08 to its intraday high on Monday of $13.49. During that uptrend, shares of FCAU have been consistently making higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. That move has now pushed shares of FCAU within range of triggering a major breakout trade. That trade will hit if FCAU manages to clear its all-time high at $13.76 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in FCAU as long as it's trending above some key near-term support levels at $12.50 or above its 50-day moving average of $12.17 and then once it sustains a move or close above its all-time high of $13.76 with volume that's near or above 7.76 million shares. If that breakout gets started soon, then FCAU will set up to enter new all-time-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are $16 to $17, or even $18.

-- Written by Roberto Pedone in Delafield, Wis.

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At the time of publication, author had no positions in stocks mentioned. Roberto Pedone, based out of Delafield, Wis., is an independent trader who focuses on technical analysis for small- and large-cap stocks, options, futures, commodities and currencies. Roberto studied international business at the Milwaukee School of Engineering, and he spent a year overseas studying business in Lubeck, Germany. His work has appeared on financial outlets including CNBC.com and Forbes.com. You can follow Pedone on Twitter at www.twitter.com/zerosum24 or @zerosum24.