Reading Oracle's Options

| About: Oracle Corporation (ORCL)

Leading enterprise software firm Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL) won’t report earnings until March 15, but it appears investors are not waiting to hear what it has to say before placing bullish bets. Even as the shares slip some 2% to $24.25 in today’s weak tape, the option activity is decidedly bullish.

At midday, option volume is some 4x the daily average, with 37,000 calls to 26,000 puts. But the order flow is even more bullish than those numbers suggest. One of the largest trades was a bullish risk reversal, as someone sold 8,100 of the March $24 puts and purchased 8,100 of the March $25 calls, for a 15 cent net credit. The position will keep that 15 cent profit if shares are above $24 on the March 19 expiration date. Of course, with earnings coming just two days earlier, there is also tremendous upside and downside potential should the stock have a gap move following the release (see earnings transcript here upon availability).

A similar, though longer term, trade occurred with the 2011 expiration, in which someone sold 6,500 of $20 puts and bought 6,500 of the $30 calls for a 45 cent net credit, creating a bullish risk/ reversal. This was quickly followed by the purchase of another 5,300 of the calls, which would make it an even money trade and even more bullish for a long term position.

Disclosure: No positions

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