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January 9, 2013  Wed 11:16 AM CT

IBM: SEE CHART GET CHAIN FIND STRATEGIES
A large call spread leads today's option action in IBM.

Total option volume in IBM is more than 24,000 contracts so far today, already twice its daily average in the last month. Much of that action is in a single call spread.  

A trader bought 6,000 February 205 calls for $0.50 and sold the same number of the January 205 calls for $0.39. These are both weekly options, using the contracts that expire in 16 and 23 days respectively. The volume at each strike was well above previous open interest, so this is a new calendar spread.

The call spread costs the trader just $0.11, which is all that is at risk until the first expiration. The maximum profit would come if IBM is right around $205 at that first expiration. (See our Education section)

IBM is down fractionally this afternoon at $192.76, in the middle of its recent range. The computing giant hasn't been above $205 since mid-October, when shares hit their 52-week high.
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