Sigma-Aldrich has risen more than 45 percent since its March lows, and some options traders apparently believe that the biochemical company has even more upside potential.
The average daily total for all Sigma-Aldrich options is 210 contracts, but calls alone totaled 4,474 yesterday versus just 58 puts, according to OptionMonster's proprietary monitoring program.
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Trading was focused on the June 50 options, where more than 3,300 calls went for $0.30 to $0.55, dwarfing open interest of just 20 contracts. Normally just one call trades at that strike on average each day.
The activity indicates that traders believe the stock will hit $50 by the time those options expire at the end of the third Friday in June. Sigma-Aldrich closed yesterday off half a point to $45.83 but crept up by a dime in after-hours trading. The shares were trading at their 52-week low of $31.45 on March 9.
Sigma-Aldrich reported first-quarter results on April 23, posting slightly lower earnings as a stronger dollar cut into overseas sales. But lower costs helped offset the sales decline, and the specialty chemical industry got a boost when Goldman Sachs upgraded the sector to "attractive."
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