Bears Are Circling The SPDR S&P Oil & Gas ETF (XOP)

oil prices

Analyst/ETF Trader Paul Weisbruch of Street One Financial brings us his daily fund flows update, which today focuses on bearish options bets taking place against a popular energy fund.

Today we have seen downside put interest in a name that has become much more familiar to many given the drubbing that Oil prices and related Energy names have taken in the past several months. XOP (SPDR Oil & Gas Exploration & Production) September 31 puts are trading today on weakness in the underlying ETF and the segment in general, and trading action in the fund itself reflects a “180 degree” type move inside of the past twenty-four hours.

Yesterday, action in XOP looked encouraging as the fund traded above its 50 day MA for the first time since mid-May, but the rally was quickly turned aside with Energy stocks largely closing lower today and continuing to bleed in the red today.

The 31 strikes are only slightly out-of-the-money at present levels in XOP. In spite of what has been a disappointing year in XOP performance wise (thanks to continued pressure in Crude Oil prices and weaker margins for Explorers and Producers), the fund has still managed to reel in more than $220 million YTD via creation activity.

The SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Exploration & Production ETF (NYSE:XOP) was trading at $31.77 per share on Friday morning, down $0.27 (-0.84%). Year-to-date, XOP has declined -22.96%, versus a 11.26% rise in the benchmark S&P 500 index during the same period.

XOP currently has an ETF Daily News SMART Grade of C (Neutral), and is ranked #21 of 38 ETFs in the Energy Equities ETFs category.

Disclaimer: The content of this article is excerpted from a daily newsletter from Street One Financial. While ETF Daily News may edit the contents and add a relevant title to the piece, the author, Paul Weisbruch, does not endorse or recommend any issuer or security mentioned herein.

About the Author: Paul Weisbruch

paul-weisbruchPaul Weisbruch is the VP of ETF/Options Sales and Trading at Street One Financial. Prior to joining the team at Street One, Paul served as the Director of RIA and Institutional ETF Sales at RevenueShares ETFs from December 2007 until November of 2009. Before RevenueShares, Paul was employed by Susquehanna International Group from 2000 until 2007 serving in roles including OTC/NYSE Institutional Block Trading, Nasdaq/OTC Market Making, ETF/Derivatives Intelligence and Strategy, Algorithmic Trading, as well as acting as the PHLX Floor Specialist in the ETFs, SPY and DIA.Paul has been actively involved in the ETF space from both a product and trading standpoint since 2000. Additionally, Paul has well forged relationships with national RIAs, institutional pension fund managers and consultants, mutual fund and hedge fund managers, and also the ETF media. Co-authoring the “S1F ETF Daily” since 2009, the daily piece has become a must for many portfolio managers in the ETF space, with segments regularly appearing in the likes of Barron’s, WSJ, and for instance.

He holds his Series 4 (Registered Options Principal), 6, 7, 55 (Equity Trader), 63, and 65 licenses. He graduated from the University of Pittsburgh (B.S. – Economics), graduating magna cum laude, and has an MBA from Villanova University.