As we called out in our Midday Market Check newsletter, healthcare concern Qiagen NV (NYSE:QGEN) is seeing accelerated options trading in today's session. The shares are up 2.9% at $33.86, and almost 7,400 calls were on the tape at last check, roughly four times the number expected today.
On a closer look, the January 2020 35-strike call that we called out in the newsletter remains the top choice by far, where roughly 4,400 contracts have been traded. Next up is the February 31 put, where 1,000 options have traded, while new positions are also opening at the January 2020 33-strike call, and the February 28 put.
Data from the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) shows put buying outnumbered call buying in the last 10 days, 5,004 to 3,609. Analysts, too, have remained bearish, with nine of the 12 in coverage setting "hold" or worse ratings.
Looking closer at QGEN's chart, yesterday's sell-off came after the shares tapped a 19-year high of $43.16 to start off the month. Traders should note that the pullback was seemingly held in check by the $30 level, while the shares have also moved above the site of another bear gap from October.