3 Stocks in Breakout Territory

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.

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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.

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With that in mind, let's take a look at several stocks rising on unusual volume today.

Weight Watchers International

Weight Watchers International ( WTW) is a provider of weight management services, operating globally through a network of company-owned and franchise operations. This stock closed up 3.9% at $33.38 in Friday's trading session.

Friday's Volume: 3.17 million
Three-Month Average Volume: 843,488
Volume % Change: 262%

From a technical perspective, WTW spiked higher here with strong upside volume flows. This stock recently gapped down sharply from $40.93 to below $32 with heavy downside volume. Following that move, shares of WTW have started to rebound and move within range of triggering a near-term breakout trade. That trade will hit if WTW can manage to take out Friday's high of $33.40 to its gap down day high of $34.69 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in WTW as long as it's trending above $32, and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that's near or above 843,488 shares. If that breakout hits soon, then WTW will set up to re-fill some of its previous gap down zone that started at $40.93. Some possible upside targets if WTW gets into that gap with volume are $36 to its 50-day moving average at $37.80.

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