Today’s tickers: RF, MSFT, F, VMW, FXI, AGN, WYE, XRT & COH
RF Regions Financial Corporation – The banking firm has slipped by more than 5% to $5.50 today, spurring option traders to heavily favor puts by a factor of four times to every call in action on the stock. We observed one investor looking to profit from further downward movement in shares by enacting a put spread in the near-term May contract. At the May 5.0 strike price he purchased 15,000 puts for an average premium of 50 cents apiece spread against the sale of 15,000 puts at the May 4.0 strike for 25 cents each. The net cost of the spread amounts to 25 cents and yields a maximum potential profit of 75 cents if shares decline all the way to $4.00 by expiration. He begins to garner profits to the downside beginning at the breakeven share price of $4.75. Another bearish trader targeted the now in-the-money May 6.0 strike price and appears to have bought 13,000 puts for an average premium of 1.05. Pessimism on the stock spread to the June 7.0 strike price where it appears that one investor sold 2,500 calls for 70 cents apiece in exchange for getting long 2,500 puts at the in-the-money June 7.0 strike price for 2.05 per contract. The net cost of the downside protection amounts to 1.35 and has already begun to amass profits for this investor as shares are currently below the breakeven point on the trade of $5.65.
MSFT Microsoft Corporation – Shares have dipped slightly by less than 1% to $18.65 ahead of its earnings conference call scheduled for 5:30 PM (EST) today. Street estimates place third quarter earnings at 39 cents per share. Our attention was drawn to one bullish investor looking to get long of call options in the October contract. It appears that this trader sold 5,113 puts at the October 16 strike price for a premium of 1.19 apiece in order to finance the purchase of 5,113 calls at the October 21 strike for 1.11 each. The investor has banked an 8 cent credit on the trade and is looking for shares to rally by about 13% by expiration in order to for the calls to land in-the-money, and for the premium on the calls to grow richer over time.
F Ford Motor Co. – Shares of the automotive company have rallied by more than 2.5% to…