Unusual Options Activity: Nvidia (NVDA)

In-the-money call option suggests further gains for shares.

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  • The November 2019 $165 call options on Nvidia (NVDA) saw over 3,300 contracts trade against a prior open interest of 281, making for a 12-fold increase in volume.

    With shares of the company currently trading at $180, the contracts are already $15 in-the-money. With the contract trading around $21, shares of the company need to rise at least another $6 for the call buyer to break-even on the trade before the option expires in 57 days.

    Nvidia, the graphics processing giant, has seen its shares decline 33 percent in the past year against a small, 4 percent gain for the overall S&P 500 index. Shares of the growth company are at 40 times current earnings, but 25 times forward earnings, and many other tech companies have lagged the market in recent months, a situation starting to look like an interesting buying opportunity.

    Action to take: Shares are likely to continue to rally, and we like the in-the-money call option as a way to trade shares. But the November strike date comes right as the company reports earnings in the third week of November.

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  • Instead, consider the January 2020 $175 call option is slightly less expensive while still being in-the-money, and also gives more time for the trade to play out, including any post-earnings bounce that may take more than a few days.


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