Apple could rally another 11 percent to record highs, says technician

Apple had an unstoppable summer.

Its shares have ripped 22 percent higher during the past three months, pushing it to all-time highs to top out the Dow.

One technician says it could rally even higher before hitting its next resistance level.

"If we quantify the rally that we've seen, we're going all the way back to 2013, very nice and symmetrical and rhythmical pattern here within a parallel channel. We're not going to start to hit resistance until about $250," Todd Gordon, founder of TradingAnalysis.com, told CNBC's "Trading Nation" on Thursday. Apple finished the trading day at $224.95 a share.

On the daily chart, "we have a nice move up, a little bit of consolidation here and then this channel resistance," Gordon said. "That's going to come in at $250."

A move to $250 represents an 11 percent rally for Apple shares from current levels and a 48 percent gain for the year.

Gordon is using options to take advantage of expected resistance at $250. His strategy is to use a call butterfly – long a $230 call, shorting the $240 call, and long the $250 call with Nov. 2 expiration. Gordon would reap maximum profit if the calls expired with shares at $240.

Stacey Gilbert, market strategist at Susquehanna, says the move makes sense but cautions investors to do the research on this kind of options strategy.

"One thing with a butterfly, … it really is a distributional play," Gilbert said on "Trading Nation." "You're really saying here's where I think the stock will end up, it's nothing that can really be traded. It's one that you really have to have that opinion and that specific strike and that specific time perfectly."

Based on Gordon's technical analysis, Gilbert says his call butterfly trade could be a good play. In fact, Gilbert has seen overall increased interest in the use of options for Apple.

"This is one year where we're starting to see investors get really interested in owning the options," said Gilbert. "For investors who are concerned that they're too late to the party, buying a call in Apple, even from a volatility perspective, does not look crazy."

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Trading Nation is a multimedia financial news program that shows investors and traders how to use the news of the day to their advantage. This is where experts from across the financial world – including macro strategists, technical analysts, stock-pickers, and traders who specialize in options, currencies, and fixed income – come together to find the best ways to capitalize on recent developments in the market. Trading Nation: Where headlines become opportunities.

Michael Santoli

Michael Santoli joined CNBC in October 2015 as a Senior Markets Commentator, based at the network's Global Headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J.  Santoli brings his extensive markets expertise to CNBC's Business Day programming, with a regular appearance on CNBC's “Closing Bell (M-F, 3PM-5PM ET).   In addition, he contributes to CNBCand CNBC PRO, writing regular articles and creating original digital videos.

Previously, Santoli was a Senior Columnist at Yahoo Finance, where he wrote analysis and commentary on the stock market, corporate news and the economy. He also appeared on Yahoo Finance video programs, where he offered insights on the most important business stories of the day, and was a regular contributor to CNBC and other networks.

Follow Michael Santoli on Twitter @michaelsantoli

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