Since Max Pain is at 35, the bankers are working on the side of the shorts to combat the value seekers and collect their options premiums by keeping it at this level. My belief is that once the bankers are no longer incentivized to keep SODA at 35 after this Friday, the price will be allowed to rise again and shorts will feel the squeeze that they have thus far been spared.
If "banks" and I use that word lightly: 1) Make most of their profits from trading, 2) If it is once in a blue moon that banks actually have a losing trading day, 3) Banks are net sellers of options and retailers are net buyers
Who do you think collects option premiums at the end of day? Max pain is only applicable if the next few days volume does not exceed current open interest.