Options Traders Bet Silver Will Shine

By David Russell, reporter at OptionMonster

NEW YORK -- Silver has been weak for a long time, but Monday the bulls were jumping in.

The option paper hit in the ProShares Ultra Silver ( AGQ) fund, which is double-leveraged to the price of the metal. More than 2,300 March 42 calls traded in a heavy buying pattern for 95 cents and $1 in volume well above the strike's previous open interest of 678 contracts, indicating new activity, according to OptionMonster's tracking systems.

Calls lock in the price where investors can buy the fund, so they can generate some nice leverage in the event of a rally. But if the stock stays below the $42 strike price, the entire investment could evaporate in a matter of just three weeks.

The silver fund's shares rose 1.68% to $39.79 as the broader market sold off. It is down 18% so far this month and last week touched levels it hadn't seen since August.

Total option volume in the name was twice the daily average in the session, with calls outnumbering puts by a bullish 3-to-1 ratio.

Russell has no positions in AGQ.
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