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Aecom is attracting call buying at highs

David Russell (david.russell@optionmonster.com)

The bulls are hoping for a breakout from Aecom Technology.

optionMONSTER's Heat Seeker monitoring system detected the purchase of about 2,500 February 25 calls for $0.85. Volume was almost triple previous open interest at the strike.

Those buyers have now locked in a $25 purchase price for shares of the provider of business services, no matter how high they may climb in the next four weeks. That could result in some nice leverage in the event of a rally, but these options will lose most of their value if the stock doesn't move.

ACM is off 0.04 percent to $25.15 in morning trading but up 58 percent in the last six months. The stock is now sitting at its highest level since July 2011, when concerns about public finances sent global markets into a tailspin.

The next earnings report is scheduled for Feb. 5. Owning calls lets the investor get long the stock before that potentially big news report but also limits the amount of money they can lose if the numbers disappoint. (See our Education section for more on how options can be used to manage risk.

More than 3,000 contracts have traded in the name so far today, compared with 78 in a typical session. Calls outnumber puts by 78 to 1.

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