September 30, 2014 / 5:35 PM / 5 years ago

GoPro shares rise on news of new cameras; bullish options active

NEW YORK (Reuters) - GoPro Inc shares rose 3 percent to touch a new high and options volume looked set to hit a record on Tuesday, a day after the maker of cameras worn by surfers and skydivers said it would be launching two new action cameras, as well as a lower priced beginner-friendly model.

GoPro Inc's founder and CEO Nick Woodman (C) celebrates GoPro Inc's IPO as he rings the opening bell at the Nasdaq Market Site in New York City, June 26, 2014. REUTERS/Mike Segar

The stock has become a momentum-crowd favorite recently, with shares nearly tripling from their first-day closing price of $31.34 on June 26.

Activity in the options market was dominated by bullish bets, with calls outnumbering puts by a ratio of 2.1 to 1. The shares were up 1.5 percent at $92.34 in afternoon trading, and earlier in the session hit a new high of $96.45. With nearly 20 million shares exchanged, the stock was on track for its busiest day of trading since its first week in the summer.

GoPro was the second most traded name in the options market on Tuesday, behind Apple Inc, and looked set to hit a new one-day trading record at around 476,000 contracts, according to options analytics firm Trade Alert.

Total volume was more than twice normal with 164,000 calls and 78,000 puts traded, according to Trade Alert.

About 40 percent of the activity in GoPro’s options was concentrated in weekly options that expire on Oct. 3, said Trade Alert president Henry Schwartz. He added that borrowing GoPro shares on Tuesday was virtually impossible given rising interest in betting against the stock.

As of Monday, more than 10 percent of the stock’s float was being used for short bets, according to Markit data, up from 6.8 percent a week ago. Most of what is available to be lent for bearish bets is being borrowed for such a purpose.

GoPro said on Monday that the two new action cameras would be available from Oct. 5.

GoPro’s new line of cameras, dubbed ‘HERO4’, will be priced at $499 for the higher-end model ‘HERO4 Black’ and the ‘HERO4 Silver’ model at $399, the company said in a statement.

“We believe that most investors were expecting this product to come out later in October,” FBN Securities analyst Shebly Seyrafi said in a note dated Sept. 29.

The company also introduced the ‘HERO’, a $129 entry-level model, meant to attract new customers.

Reporting by Saqib Iqbal Ahmed. Editing by Andre Grenon

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