Navigating the trade in United Rentals
David Russell | email@example.com
Our Heat Seeker tracking system detected the purchase of about 2,000 December 40 calls for $1 and the sale of an equal number of October 31 puts for $1.25. Volume was more than twice open interest at both strikes.
URI is down 2.28 percent to $32.57 in morning trading. The equipment-rental company's stock has lost more than one-quarter of its value since late April, when it touched an all-time high near $48.
Today's option strategy is bullish and has an unusual performance profile because it uses puts and calls at different expiration months. The investor is now positioned for a rally through December expiration but also has exposure at the October 31 puts in the next three weeks.
This way, the trader may be forced to buy shares for $31 if they fall below that level in the near term. But then he or she would have an even bigger long position and stand to profit handsomely if the stock rallies hard into December. The risk is to the downside, and the investor appears confident that it won't go much below the late-August lows around $31.
Based on the timing, he or she appears to expect short-term weakness followed by a late-2012 surge. (See our Education section for more on how to time moves with calls and puts.)
Overall option volume is about twice the daily average in URI so far today.