Tens of millions of dollars in options trades tied to the biggest American technology companies have again surfaced in US markets, weeks after the Japanese conglomerate SoftBank Group Corp. was linked to similar wagers.
Amazon.com Inc., Facebook Inc. and Netflix Inc. were among companies that saw block trades of call contracts Thursday, representing speculation on movements in their shares through the first months of next year. Call options are bullish bets by themselves but can also be paired with other positions as part of a hedge.
The identity of the buyer wasn’t known. Analysts noted a resemblance to a series of wagers made by SoftBank over the summer, which entailed billions of dollars of call purchases in tech stocks. Those “Nasdaq whale” wagers -- combined with an explosion in buying by individuals and day traders in short-dated options -- were theorized by some analysts to have created a bullish feedback loop that contributed to the August rally in the Nasdaq 100.