Options Trading News

December 20, 2012  Thu 2:45 AM CT

Call selling was the play of the day for energy names Weatherford International and Alpha Natural Resources yesterday afternoon.

Just after 2 p.m. ET, a trader sold 42,800 ANR June 11 calls for the bid price of $1.30, according to optionMONSTER systems. The open interest at the strike was just 145 contracts at the beginning of the session, so this selling was done to open a new position.

Half an hour later, a trader sold 13,305 WFT February 13 calls for the bid price of $0.22. The volume was about 4 times that strike's open interest, also indicating new activity.

The options weren't sold against any trading in the underlying stocks that we saw yesterday, so this could be naked call selling. The trades could also have been done against a long position established at an earlier time to create covered call postions, which would be bullish up to their respective strike prices but not beyond. (See our Education section)

Coal producer Alpha Natural finished yesterday's session at $9.53, down 3.64 percent as it pulls back from resistance that has been in place since early June. Oil and natural-gas company Weatherford fell 1 percent to close at $11.01 but was trading at a 52-week low of $8.84 only a month ago.
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