Stock Quotes in this Article: CKEC, CQB, EXPD

DELAFIELD, Wis. (Stockpickr) -- Professional traders running mutual funds and hedge funds don't just look at a stock's price moves; they also track big changes in volume activity. Often when above-average volume moves into an equity, it precedes a large spike in volatility.

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Major moves in volume can signal unusual activity, such as insider buying or selling -- or buying or selling by "superinvestors."

Unusual volume can also be a major signal that hedge funds and momentum traders are piling into a stock ahead of a catalyst. These types of traders like to get in well before a large spike, so it's always a smart move to monitor unusual volume. That said, remember to combine trend and price action with unusual volume. Put them all together to help you decipher the next big trend for any stock.

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With that in mind, let's take a look at several stocks rising on unusual volume today.

Carmike Cinemas

Carmike Cinemas (CKEC), a motion picture exhibitor in the U.S., owns and operates 249 theatres with 2,502 screens located in 35 states. This stock closed up 6.4% to $18.66 in Tuesday's trading session.

Tuesday's Volume: 569,000

Three-Month Average Volume: 216,198

Volume % Change: 138%

Shares of CKEC ripped higher on Monday after Barron's said the current price could be a good entry point and expansion could generate further gains down the line.

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From a technical perspective, CKEC jumped higher here and broke out above some near-term overhead resistance levels at $18.50 to its 50-day moving average of $18.62 with strong upside volume. This stock has started to uptrend since it found some buying interest recently right above its 200-day moving average at $16.92.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in CKEC as long as it's trending above Tuesday's low of $18 or above more near-term support at $17.41 and then once it sustains a move or close above Tuesday's high at $18.86 to $19.50 with volume that hits near or above 216,198 shares. If we get that move soon, then CKEC will set up to re-test or possibly take out its 52-week high at $20.89. Any high-volume move above that level will then give CKEC a chance to tag $23 to $25.

Chiquita Brands International

Chiquita Brands International (CQB) sources, distributes and markets bananas and other fresh products that are sold principally under the Chiquita brand. This stock closed up 5.9% at $13.06 in Tuesday's trading session.

Tuesday's Volume: 1.17 million

Three-Month Average Volume: 536,033

Volume % Change: 116%

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From a technical perspective, CQB ripped sharply higher here right above some near-term support levels at $12.16 to its 50-day moving average of $12.09 with strong upside volume. This move briefly pushed shares of CQB into new 52-week-high territory, since it took out its previous 52-week high at $13.10. This move also pushed shares of CQB above the upper-end of its recent range that saw the stock trend between $11.88 on the downside and $13.10 on the upside. Shares of CQB closed just below its new 52-week high at $13.06 with volume that was well above its three-month average action of 536,033 shares.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in CQB as long as it's trending above its 50-day at $12.09 and then once it sustains a move or close above its 52-week high at $13.10 to some past resistance at $13.41 with volume that's near or above 536,033 shares. If that breakout hits soon, then CQB will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $15 to $16.

Expeditors International of Washington

Expeditors International of Washington (EXPD) is engaged in the business of providing logistics services. This stock closed up 2.2% at $41.46 in Tuesday's trading session.

Tuesday's Volume: 2.06 million

Three-Month Average Volume: 1.24 million

Volume % Change: 75%

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From a technical perspective, EXPD trended up modestly higher here right above some near-term support levels at $40.23 and above its 50-day moving average at $40.09 with above-average volume. This stock has been trending sideways and consolidating for the last month and change, with shares moving between $39.66 on the downside and $42.95 on the upside. Shares of EXPD are now quickly moving within range of triggering a big breakout trade above the upper-end of its consolidation chart pattern. That trade will hit if EXPD manages to clear some near-term overhead resistance at $42 to $42.95 and then once it clears its 52-week high at $43.80 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in EXPD as long as it's trending above its 50-day at $40.09 or above more key support at $39.66 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that's near or above 1.24 million shares. If that breakout hits soon, then EXPD will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are its next major overhead resistance levels at $46.50 to $50.

To see more stocks rising on unusual volume, check out the Stocks Rising on Unusual Volume portfolio on Stockpickr.

-- Written by Roberto Pedone in Delafield, Wis.


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At the time of publication, author had no positions in stocks mentioned.

Roberto Pedone, based out of Delafield, Wis., is an independent trader who focuses on technical analysis for small- and large-cap stocks, options, futures, commodities and currencies. Roberto studied international business at the Milwaukee School of Engineering, and he spent a year overseas studying business in Lubeck, Germany. His work has appeared on financial outlets including

CNBC.com and Forbes.com. You can follow Pedone on Twitter at www.twitter.com/zerosum24 or @zerosum24.