Most Unusual Option Trades: Actavis Plc (NYSE:ACT), Itau Unibanco (NYSE:ITUB), Bank of New York Mellon (NYSE:BK).

It’s been a fairly busy day of unusual options trades, and we’ve been noticing a lot more put buys than is normal, today.  But we like to focus on the call buys and there’s been several interesting and or unusual ones so far! Three of the most interesting call buys today have been seen in Actavis Plc (NYSE:ACT), Itau Unibanco Holding SA (NYSE:ITUB), and in Bank of New York Mellon (NYSE:BK).

Actavis Plc (NYSE:ACT) saw a very unusual opening buyer of 3,593 December $265 calls.  The trader paid $6.60 at the ask for those contracts.  That makes for a transaction value of a whopping $2.37 Million and change.  Now that is conviction! As of 2:30 pm there has now been a total of 4030 contracts traded in Actavis Plc (NYSE:ACT) December $265 calls.

actavis plc -ACT-logoActavis Plc (NYSE:ACT) is currently trading at $233.57 down 81 cents and well off it’s day high of 235.80 hit in early morning trading.  ACT has a 52 week high of $239.15, and a low of $135.10 for the year. That’s a pretty large range.    It’s traded almost 1.1 million shares so far today versus it’s average volume traded of 2.33 million shares.  Not exactly a blistering volume pace, so this call large call buy on weakness in price and volume makes for an unusual and interesting trade.

Meanwhile another trader thinks (knows?)that Itau Unibanco Holding SA (NYSE:ITUB) is going higher.  The trader bought 3,000 of the ITUB December $19 calls. They paid 25 cents at the ask, for those calls that expire in December.  That makes for a transaction value of just $75,000, which is not big at by any metric, but we always smile when we see an unusual call buy in a Brazilian stock. Those South Americans love their insider trading!  And we always stand up and take notice when we see call buying in these stocks.  There’s now been 3400 of the December 19’s traded.  Some of that was us.

Itau Unibanco Holding SA (NYSE:ITUB) is currently trading at $16.02 up 16 cents on the day, though off its earlier high of $16.15 since the call buying.  ITUB has a 52 week high of $18.49, and a low of $10.85 for the year.  It’s traded 6.8 million shares today so far, and normal daily volume is 10.8 million shares on average.

Itau Unibanco Holding SA (NYSE:ITUB) announces quarterly earnings November 5, so it is possible numbers have leaked, but we doubt this is the reason for the call buy.  We’re betting someone knows an upgrade is coming along with a nice price target boost.

The third unusual call buy we like is in Bank of New York Mellon (NYSE:BK).  Today, a trader bought 2,860 of the weekly October 3rd $40 calls in BK.  This comes after some interesting call buys in BK last week.  The trader paid 58 cents for these options, at the ask.  This trader wasn’t the only one liking the Oct 3rd $40’s.  There’s now been 5100+ contracts traded today.  All opening action.

Bank of New York Mellon (NYSE:BK) is actually trading down at the moment, at $39.85, down 5 cents.  BK has a 52 week high of $40.06 and a low of $29.55.  It’s traded just 2.75 million shares today so not a lot going on here.

BK actually announces earnings on October 14, so these weekly options will be a distant memory by that time.  We’re going to have to give our usual guess that this buy is related to an impending analyst upgrade.   We’re going out on a limb and guessing either Credit Suisse or Morgan Stanley will upgrade BK some time this week.

Have fun out there, and keep your head low.