Options Traders Respond to Billion-Dollar Oil Buyout

ConocoPhillips will buy Marathon Oil for $22.5 billion

ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) announced it will buy Marathon Oil Corp (NYSE:MRO) for $22.5 billion, with the deal expected to close in the fourth quarter. Below, let’s dig into how both stocks are reacting to the big merger. 

COP was last seen down 3% at $115.33, but former resistance at the $114 level could flip into support. Despite being in pullback mode since an April 12, more than one-year high of $135.18, shares still boast a 14.6% year-over-year lead.

Meanwhile, MRO is up 8.4% at $28.68 at last check — its highest level since April, and on track for its biggest single-day percentage gain since April 2023. The stock is up 19.1% so far this year.

COP and MRO are attracting unusual attention in the options pits today. Both are seeing six times their average intraday options volume so far today. Most popular for COP is the weekly 5/31 115-strike put, while new positions are opening at MRO’s most popular 29-strike call in the same weekly series.

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