IB Options Brief: JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) & Barclays PLC (BCS)
Contrarian Options Strategies Crop Up In Some Financials Ahead Of Holiday
JPM ñ JPMorgan Chase & Co.
JPMorgan blends in with the sea of red today, its shares trading lower by 3.2% to stand at $28.48, as of 11:55 AM in New York. But, fresh prints in weekly options covering the banking institution reveal some strategists are initiating low-probability bullish positions on the stock should shares rebound after the holiday. Call options expiring on Friday saw an influx of buyers paying as little as a penny per contract to prepare for a near-term rebound. Trading traffic in the front-week calls is heaviest at the Nov. í25 $29 strike where more than 7,600 contracts changed hands against previously existing open interest of 340 positions. It looks like most of these calls were purchased for an average premium of $0.30 apiece. Investors long the calls may profit at expiration this week in the event that JPMís shares rally 2.9% to exceed the average breakeven point at $29.30. Traders also purchased another 1,000 calls at each of the Nov. $30 and $31 strikes for average premiums of $0.06 and $0.01 each, respectively. Meanwhile, like-minded optimism appears to have spread out to contracts that expire one week from this Friday. Investors itching for a rebound picked up around 1,500 in-the-money calls at the Dec. í02 $28 strike for an average premium of $1.28 a-pop. Call buyers make money if shares in JPMorgan Chase & Co. top the average breakeven price of $29.28 at expiration on December 2. Options implied volatility on the stock rose 13.8% to 53.5% in early-afternoon trade.
BCS ñ Barclays PLC
A burst of call activity on Barclays pushed the stock onto our ëmost active by options volumeí market scanner just before midday in New York. The seemingly bullish call buying on Barclays contrasts with the 3.0% move lower in the price of its shares to $9.32 this afternoon. More than 30,000 call options changed hands at the Dec. $12 strike against open interest of 3,863 contracts. It appears one investor purchased most of the calls, outright, at a premium of $0.15 apiece. The trader stands ready to profit at expiration in the event that the stock jumps 30.4% to surpass the effective breakeven price of $12.15. Shares in Barclays had topped $12.15 as recently as November 4.
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