Mini-Nasdaq 100 draws large spread

optionMONSTER

The Mini-Nasdaq 100 Index has attracted a large put spread for the second time this week.

optionMONSTER systems show that more than 38,600 MNX options have traded, only 57 of which are calls. This compares to the daily average of 2,684 in the last month.

The activity is almost entirely in one vertical spread, as more than 18,000 each of the April 265 and 260 puts have traded. This is clearly new positioning because the open interest at each stike was fewer than 300 contracts before today's session began.

The trader is selling the April 265 puts mostly for $0.71 and buying the April 260 puts for $0.41. The result is a credit spread that keeps a full profit if the MNX remains above $265 through expiration in mid-April.

This trade follows a call spread in similar size opened on Wednesday . It appears that this trader is legging into a so-called iron condor position with the moves of the market. (See our Education section)

The MNX is down 1.26 percent to 275.96. The index finished Tuesday above 282, its highest close since early October. It has remained above 265 since the last day of 2012.

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