Viacom bulls tuned in for more upside
David Russell | [email protected]
The media company is up 5.9 percent to $78.75 in afternoon trading after announcing that it would double its share-buyback program to $20 billion. Earnings missed by a narrow margin, but revenue beat thanks to strong advertising sales.
Viacom has also seen bullish action in the option market, with optionMONSTER's Heat Seeker system showing the purchase of more than 7,400 August 80 calls against previous open interest of just 49 contracts. The largest block priced for $0.95.
These long calls lock in the price where shares can be purchased, letting investors cheaply acquire upside exposure to the stock. The options can profit if VIAB continues to run in the next two weeks, while limiting the amount of money that can be lost in a selloff. (See our Education section)
Today's move represents another record high for the VIAB, which owns MTV and Comedy Central. It's up 49 percent so far this year.
Total option volume is 5 times greater than average in the name, according to the Heat Seeker. Calls outnumber puts by a bullish 17-to-1 ratio.