Heavy Call Flow In Nikola, Li Auto And 8 Other Stocks

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Here Are the top 10 stocks on Fintel’s Option Flow Leaderboard.

While many investors brush off options, others like to “follow the flow.” In other words, they want to know what the big funds and institutions are doing. We can follow in their footsteps when looking for unusual options activity.

Thankfully, there’s a leaderboard of options activity for both calls and puts, helping flag unusual volume.

Mindful of that, here are ten stocks with heavy call flow last week.

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Cano Health Inc (CANO)

Cano Health (NYSE:CANO) topped last week's call options leaderboard as buyers spent $15 million buying them.

The large purchase comes after shares spiked more than 30% on September 22nd due to buyout rumors. This may be a player looking for that rumor to pan out.

As shares were trading near $8.50 a share on October 3rd, this buyer scooped up tens of thousands of $9 calls expiring in December. It generated volume of more than 60,000 calls against a prior open interest (the amount of options held at the start of the day) of just 2655.

iShares China Large-Cap ETF (FXI)

The next holding on our list is the iShares China Large-Cap ETF (NYSEARCA:FXI), which actually ranks as No. 1 on the ETF list of options activity.

These trades were placed on Oct 5, with the largest one standing out in the December expiration $28 calls. The calls are slightly out-the-money and garnered $5.4 million in premiums.

Further, the October $28 calls generated about $600,000 in premium.

The action followed the fund's six percent rise since Monday.

Nikola (NKLA)

Ranking No. 3 on the individual options leaderboard is Nikola (NASDAQ:NKLA). Interestingly, EV stocks and automakers were popping up on the list, led by Nikola.

That happened on a split order of the $5 calls expiring in November. That came as shares were trading near $3.75, so the calls were relatively far out-the-money. The buyer dropped more than $3.6 million in premium to pull the trade off.

There was more buying in the same strike less than a minute later, racking up $21,000 in premiums.

Li Auto (LI)

Another automaker and EV stock on the list? Li Auto (NASDAQ:LI).

However, instead of one or two trades popping up, 13 options trades rang up the register with more than $2.2 million in call premium.

There were a handful of trades September 30th through October 5th. One, a split order for about $970,000 each.

These are some very long-dated calls, too, with the buyer scooping up the $18 calls expiring in January 2025. That’s more than two years until expiration and these were some deep-in-the-money calls, with shares trading at $23.31 at the time of the trade. Someone is looking for a big rebound and isn't playing for the short term.

Farfetch (FTCH)

Farfetch (NYSE:FTCH) came in at No. 8 on the options leaderboard over the last week, after a trade was split into two orders totalling more than $1.45 million in premium.

On September 29th, one trader bought the $6 strike expiring in January. With shares trading near $7.50 a share at the time of the trade, this was clearly an in-the-money attempt to capture an upside move with limited capital in play.

Likely, it was an attempt to play a fourth-quarter rally and capture the holiday rally — if there is one this year.

Barrick Gold (GOLD)

Right behind Farfetch is Barrick Gold (NYSE:GOLD) at No. 9 on the list, where it had a very active trader — or possibly traders.

On September 28th, a trader bought almost $500,000 in the $15 calls expiring on Oct 21st.

Half a million dollars in $15.50 Oct. 21 calls traded shortly thereafter with another $500,,000.

A day later, another $478,000 in premium was paid out for the same calls and then again with almost $480,000 in premium.

As of Oct. 6th, there’s over 15,000 contracts in open interest and these calls are now in the money following a nice rally in Barrick Gold and in gold prices. With volume of more than 5,000 contracts on the day (the 6th), the trader could be booking some profits — or more people could be jumping aboard.

Restaurant Brands International (QSR)

Skipping down the list a little bit, we have Restaurant Brands International (NYSE: QSR) at No. 14.

That’s after a trader started lighting up the October $55 and $52.50 calls. Expiring in just a few weeks, these calls were an at-the-money and an in-the-money purchase, respectively.

The trader shelled out $640,000 in premium for the $52.50 calls and $280,000 for the $55 calls.

Vaxcyte (PCVX)

Vaxcyte (NASDAQ: PCVX) stands out on the list due to its market cap, which stands at just $1.4 billion and is the second smallest name on this list.

This one is interesting, because someone opened just over $900,000 in premium in the December $22.50 calls. These were more than $2 a share in the money and came at a time where there was no open interest (meaning no other trader held a position in these calls).

Domino’s Pizza (DPZ)

Domino’s Pizza (NYSE:DPZ) has a much larger market cap than Vaxcyte, at $11.7 billion. However, it also doesn’t tend to generate much options activity.

That changed when someone bought $894,000 worth of premium in the $340 calls. Set to expire in October, these calls were about $10 per share out of the money.

Keros Therapeutics (KROS)

Last but not least, we have Keros Therapeutics (NASDAQ:KROS) with the smallest market cap on the list at just over $1 billion.

Someone is clearly bullish on this name, purchasing almost $900,000 worth of the October $30 calls. At the time, these were in the money by more than $6 a share and as of October 6th, that figure has climbed to $10 in the money and by the looks of things, the buyer is still in the trade.

Article by Bret Kenwell, Fintel