Phillips 66 gets a vote of confidence

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Phillips 66 is trying to rebound from a sharp drop last month, and one trader is betting on a floor beneath the stock.

More than 4,200 August 57.50 puts traded in a strong selling pattern yesterday, led by a print of 3,100 that went for $1.20, according to optionMONSTER's tracking systems. This is clearly new position, as the volume was well above the strike's open interest of 2,558 contracts before the session began.

The put seller is looking for PSX to stay above the $57.50 strike price through expiration in mid-August. If it falls below that level, the trader will be on the hook to buy shares at an effective price of $56.30 once the credit from the put sale is included.

PSX fell 0.82 percent yesterday to close at $65.42. The stock doubled from late April 2012, when the company was spun off from ConocoPhillips, to its high of $70.52 in late March of this year. It then pulled back to the $56 level about a month ago but has been working its way higher since. (See our Education section)

The energy company beat earnings on May 1, continuing its string of positive quarterly reports. Management presented at the UBS Global Oil & Gas Conference yesterday morning.

Overall option volume in PSX surpassed 12,000 contracts yesterday, more than double its daily average for the last month.


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