Unusual Options Activity: Is It Telling Us Something About These Stocks?

There are all sorts of ways to generate trading ideas. Sometimes looking at the unusual options activity can point to where money is flowing to and can anticipate big stock-price moves. Here’s a look at some of the most recent volume that stuck out in the options market.


Recent Unusual Options Activity In Cannabis Stock

Tilray (TLRY) jumped impressively in the last few sessions. It rose from around 10 to close at 13.03 yesterday. However, that was around the low of the day after briefly hitting a high of 13.95.

Tilray stock was one of the few marijuana stocks to rise yesterday following the announcement of new legislation to federally decriminalize cannabis.

Volume for the stock was up 191%, and the options volume also went through the roof.

TLRY stock had one of the most unusual options activity sessions in the options market yesterday, with total volume over 400,000 contracts.

Call options volume outpaced puts by a ratio of nearly 6-to-1. Overall volume was nearly three times higher than normal.

The contract with the highest volume was the Nov. 19 call with a 14 strike. The volume on that Tilray stock option alone was nearly 31,000.

Drilling into that contract, we can see that the highest-traded price for the day was $1.01, with the contract ending the day at around $0.35.

Two days prior, that same contract was trading for just $0.15.

Options Volume Spikes In Oil

Another stock showing unusual options activity was Marathon Petroleum (MPC). Yesterday’s total options volume was 388,000 vs. an average of 17,900. That’s over 21 times the normal volume for Marathon stock.

Ninety-eight percent of the contracts traded were in call options. The most active contract was the Nov. 19 calls with a 62.50 strike. The unusual options activity showed 137,143 contracts exchanged for that option.

The next most active options on Marathon Petroleum stock were the Nov. 19 calls at 60, which traded 62,028 contracts.

Going out to January next year, we also saw a lot of volume in the 42.50, 45, 47.50 and 50 strike calls.

Despite these two stocks having unusual options activity, the total volume leaders for the day were Tesla (TSLA) and Apple (AAPL).

Tesla traded over 1 million options contracts, with Apple not far behind at 900,000 contracts.

Unusual Options Activity In Other Notable Stocks

Other notable stocks with unusual options activity included Boeing (BA) at 570,000 contracts, after the company announced a number of orders coming in. Ford (F) had 518,000 contracts as the carmakers continue their rise. AMC Entertainment (AMC) had 500,000 contracts. Metaverse plays also showed unusual options activity as Meta Platforms (FB) had 444,000 contracts. Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) had 396,000 contracts. And Nvidia (NVDA) had 315,000 contracts with earnings after the close on Wednesday.

Gavin McMaster has a Masters in Applied Finance and Investment. He specializes in income trading using options, is very conservative in his style and believes patience in waiting for the best setups is the key to successful trading. Follow him on Twitter at @OptiontradinIQ


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