It's actually 2 million contracts for October calls, another 60 thousand for November, 330 thousand for January 2011, more than 65 thousand for April 2011, and more than 200 thousand for January 2012.
These smell of the "early dividend assignment" play: call option positions deep-in-the money, which profit if they are not assigned to capture the dividend (given the huge numbers, even if a small fraction of investors neglect to send in their notices to their brokerages, the profits can add up).
nly_investor who used to post here was doing something like this without being a professional.
If you do it with leverage, the profits (when it works, and nothing huge goes actually against the stock) can mount up even more.
i know but it's like 250mm shares which really makes me want to know who is on the other side of these trades? that's 40% of outstanding shares. assuming they all slide through tomorrow, you are talking $100mm+ in losses for the sellers.