Beaten Down Coal Draws Activity

By Pete Najarian, co-founder of OptionMonster

NEW YORK -- The Market Vectors Coal ETF ( KOL) has been driven from 52-week highs, and Thursday traders were playing for a bounce.

The options paper focused on the October 23 calls and the October 26 calls. The 23s were bought for $1.05 and the 26s were sold for 20 cents. There was barely any previous positioning in either strike before the trade appeared.

Owning calls locks in the price investors must pay to buy the shares, and selling calls fixes their maximum exit. They paid 85 cents, and could potentially collect the $3 difference between the two strike prices. That's profit of 253% if the fund pushes back to $26.

The fund closed at $22.40 Thursday, down 2.18%. It's declined from over $42 a year ago, and has really been beaten down in a big way. Holdings include well-known producers like Consol Energy, Peabody Energy and equipment maker Joy Global.

Almost 3,300 contracts traded in the fund, versus fewer than 200 in a normal session. Calls outnumbered puts by more than 200 to 1, so the sentiment was clearly bullish.

Najarian has no position in KOL.

This commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet guest contributor program. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of TheStreet or its management.

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