Bears double down on oil drillers

optionMONSTER

Oil stocks have been tumbling, and the bears think more downside may be in store.

optionMONSTER's Depth Charge monitoring program detected the purchase of 30,000 September 73 puts in the SPDR Oil & Gas Exploration & Production Fund for $2.50. At the same time, a block of 15,000 August 79 puts were sold for $5.25, but volume was below open interest.

The trader is rolling the put position down and out. They doubled its size while taking some money off the table. He or she now stands to profit further if the fund continues to decline. (See our Education section.)

XPO fell 2.72 percent to $73.74, its lowest close since mid-April. The fund, whose big holdings include Abraxas Petroleum, Gastar Exploration and RSP Permian, touched an all-time high of $84.04 in late June.

Total option volume was 5 times greater than average in the session, with puts outnumbering calls by a bearish 14-to-1 ratio.


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