Blogging Options: CBOE Mid-Day Update 7.8.13

Volatility as an asset class

Priceline.com (PCLN, $881.80) recently traded at fresh record high of $882.25 on Morgan Stanley upgrading the company to Overweight from Equal Weight with a new price target of $1010. The firm raised estimates above consensus following its survey of European hotels that indicates an improved competitive position, growing inventory at Bookings.com and stabilizing margins. July weekly call option implied volatility is at 26, July is at 22, August is at 29; compared to its 26-week average of 30.
Russell 2000 (IWM, $100.10) traded at a record high of $100.44 Overall implied volatility at 18; 26-week average is 18.
NASDAQ 100 Index Tracking Stock (QQQ) is down 13c to $72.45. Intel (INTC) sells off after Evercore puts a  Sell rating on it.  Citi also made negative comments. Overall option implied volatility of 15 is near its 26-week average of 16.

Actives:  AAPL C DELL ZNGA VOD ABX GOOG NFLX INTC

CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) is up 0.17 to 15.06. VIX July 15, 16 and 17 puts are active on total option volume of 663K contacts at the CBOE.

S&P 100 Options (OEX) is up $3.12 to $736.04 on a continuation of the move Friday that was attributed to the better than expected monthly jobs report.

Tech stocks a slight drag on the market today.  Bank stocks move higher, as new reserve requirements while higher, not as high as they could have been.  All eyes on Alcoa earnings after close,