WINDERMERE, Fla. ( Stockpickr) -- According to CNBC's "Fast Money" traders, M&A activity is what will likely be the big driver going forward for the stock market. On Tuesday's "Fast Money" show, Pete Najarian said he's keeping an ear open for M&A rumors. He said options activity suggests M&A will continue to drive this market.

Joe Terranova said the S&P 500 wants to go above 1150. He thinks it's just a matter of finding a catalyst, and that catalyst could easily be M&A. Terranova mentioned that there's speculation that British bank Barclays ( BCS) is looking to make a big acquisition, and if it's true, it could power the markets much higher.

Guy Adami said that trading opportunities are still around despite low-volume days like Tuesday. He cited Transocean ( RIG) as an example, after the stock recovered from its disastrous earnings and has moved up from $77 to $86. Adami advised viewers to take profits in RIG. He also said to take profits in AIG ( AIG), which has a huge short interest.

Perma-bear Pete Schiff, president of Euro Pacific Capital, joined the traders to discuss his take on the markets. He said the housing market is in terrible shape due to the government propping it up by using guaranteed loans and keeping interest rates too low. Schiff warned that housing prices could come down much more, and that would expose the bad debt at the major banks and trigger more government bailout action.

The "Fast Money" crew has recently highlighted trading ideas that play off five stocks to short, biopharma stocks and stock with unusual options activity. Here are some highlights from over the past week as aggregated from the show.

Fast Money's 5 Stocks About to Head South: If you're looking for some short ideas, hedge fund manager Doug Kass has a few ideas worth putting on your radar. On last Friday's "Fast Money" show, Kass told viewers: "A number of factors appear likely to drag down asset managers. They include weak inflows, less matching by corporations and a tired market." The Fast Money's 5 Stocks About to Head South portfolio includes Janus Capital ( JNS) and T. Rowe Price ( TROW).

Fast Money's March 9 Stock Trades: March 9 marked the anniversary of the 2009 stock market lows. There were a lot of rumors on Wall Street that we could see a lot of profit-taking on or near the bull market's anniversary. On last Thursday's "Fast Money" show, Gary Kaminsky told viewers: "The idea here is that investors will say to themselves, what are names I was smart enough to buy. And where should I trim." The Fast Money's March 9 Stock Trades portfolio includes NASDAQ OMX Group ( NDAQ) and Ford Motor ( F).

Fast Money's Options Action: The traders have noticed some unusual options activity in a number of stocks. On Wednesday's "Halftime Report" segment, JJ Kinahan of TD Ameritrade told viewers: "Big volume in the March 4 and June 4 calls in Citigroup ( C) suggests option investors expect more upside." The Fast Money's Options Action portfolio includes DryShips ( DRYS) and Southwestern Energy ( SWN).

Fast Money's Biopharma Trades: A handful of biotech stocks are due out with news on some key drugs in the near future. What's the trade? On Monday's "Fast Money" show, Pete Najarian told viewers: "If you want to play this space, I'd do it with Cephalon ( CEPH) or Celgene ( CELG)." The Fast Money's Biopharma Trades portfolio includes Dendreon ( DNDN) and Amylin Pharmaceuticals ( AMLN).

Fast Money's New Router Stock Trades: Cisco Systems ( CSCO) recently introduced a new router that it says can handle 12 times the Internet traffic of the nearest competing product. How should you play this news? On Tuesday's "Halftime Report" segment, Pete Najarian told viewers: "I'm watching QLogic ( QLGC). Options action suggest they too may be a beneficiary." The Fast Money's New Router Stock Trades portfolio includes Apple ( AAPL) and Google ( GOOG).

Fast Money's Consumer Comeback Trades: New retail sales data suggests that consumers are making a big comeback. How should you play this trend? On last Thursday's "Fast Money" show, Pete Najarian told viewers: "One thing investors should remember is that there's a lot of short interest in some of these names. I like The Buckle ( BKE), but the short interest is something like 35%, and short interest in Zale's ( ZLC) is 50%." The Fast Money's Consumer Comeback Trades portfolio includes ChinaMobile ( CHL) and Pier 1 ( PIR).

-- Written by Roberto Pedone in Windermere, Fla.


Follow Stockpickr on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.
Stockpickr is a wholly owned subsidiary of