did not announce significant news Friday, but at least one investor is taking a bullish stance on the industrial metals and minerals company and boosting call volume days before the company's earnings.
Analysts expect TCk to report 47 cents EPS, up from 44 cents EPS last quarter.
The out-of-the-money January 2010 40 calls have changed hands 17,000 times so far today and are home to current open interest of only 846 contracts. These calls are currently unchanged, and trading around $1.20. This computes to an implied volatility of 51 with the stock around $33.48.
The November 40 calls have a delta of approximately 27, meaning for every dollar move in the underlying, these options should drop 27 cents. Given that TCK is down five cents, these calls should have dropped around two cents, but the call-buying activity pushed the price higher than the delta would suggest.
Bullish investors who bought these calls and decide to hold them until expiration need TCK shares to expire higher than $40.20 to make money. If the calls increase in value prior to expiration following a rise in shares, the investor could choose to take profits.
Normal daily option volume in TCK is approximately 3,000 contracts, so this type of volume is highly unusual for the stock. The increasing volume today suggests investors believe TCK shares could continue to move throughout the next few months.
-- Written by Jud Pyle in Chicago
At the time of publication, Pyle did not have any positions in the stock mentioned. Jud Pyle, CFA, is the chief investment strategist for Options News Network. Pyle started his career in finance in 1994 as a derivative analyst with SBC Warburg. After four years with Warburg, Pyle joined PEAK6 Investments, L.P., in 1998 as an equity options trader and as chief risk officer. A native of Minneapolis, Pyle received his bachelor's degree in economics and history from Colgate University in 1994. As a trader, Pyle traded on average over 5,000 contracts per day, and over 1.2 million contracts per year. He also built the stock group for all PEAK6 Investments, L.P. hedging, which currently trades on average over 5 million shares per day, and over 1 billion shares per year. Further, from 2004-06, he managed the trading and risk management for PEAK6 Investments L.P.'s lead market-maker operation on the former PCX exchange, which traded more than 10,000 contracts per day. Pyle is the "Mad About Options" resident expert. He is also a regular contributor to "Options Physics."