Markets

Bears subscribe to New York Times

New York Times is at its lowest price in more than two years, and the bears are afraid the bottom might fall out.

optionMONSTER's Depth Charge tracking system detected the purchase of about 10,000 September 6 puts against open interest of just 15 contracts. Premiums rose from $0.20 to $0.25, with most of the volume pricing at the higher level -- an indication of strong buying pressure.

The activity reflects fear that the venerable newspaper company will continue to drop in the near term. NYT fell 5.49 percent to $6.88 yesterday and is down 36 percent in the last six months.

The company has been slashing costs and attempting to shift its business model away from traditional broadsheet advertising and toward digital subscriptions. Revenue missed guidance and earnings beat the last time it issued results on July 21.

The put buying in NYT came just minutes after the opposite activity in rival Gannett, which runs USA Today and 23 television stations. In GCI, an even 15,000 September 9 puts were sold for $0.35 against open interest of just 42 contracts. That reflects a belief that the stock, down 8.52 percent to $9.99 yesterday, will hold its ground or push higher.

Given the proximity of the trades, it appears than an investor wants to be short volatility in GCI and long volatility in NYT. See our Education Section more.

Overall options volume was 9 times greater than average in GCI and 35 times greater than average in NYT.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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