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Retail ETF sees huge put buying

Chris McKhann (chris.mckhann@optionmonster.com)

The SPDR Retail Fund drew a huge downside position yesterday even as shares traded near lifetime highs.

A block of 19,766 January 80 puts was bought for the ask price of $2.18, according to optionMONSTER's Depth Charge system. This is clearly a new position, as open interest in the strike was a paltry 715 contracts before the trade appeared.

These puts weren't tied to any stock trades identified by our systems yesterday, but they could have been bought as a hedge on a long position established earlier. If not, this would be an outright bearish bet that the exchange-traded fund would fall back below $80. (See our Education section)

The XRT finished yesterday up 1.11 percent to $82.93, just off its all-time closing high of $83.10 from early August. Total option volume in the fund topped 36,700 contracts yesterday, more than triple its daily average for the last month.

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