Stock Quotes in this Article: DTE, ICUI, VMED, DWRE

MADISON, 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.

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

>>5 Stocks Poised for Breakouts

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.

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

>>5 Stocks Under $10 Set to Soar

Virgin Media

Virgin Media (VMED) offers entertainment and communications services to residential and commercial customers throughout the U.K. It provides broadband internet, television, mobile telephony and fixed line telephony services. This stock closed up 2.7% at $51 on Friday.

Friday's Volume: 9.60 million

Average Volume: 4.38 million

Volume % Change: 121%

>>3 Big Stocks on Traders' Radars

From a technical perspective, VMED ripped higher here right through its 50-day moving average at $49.86 with heavy upside volume. This move is quickly pushing shares of VMED within range of triggering a major breakout trade. That trade will hit if VMED manages to take out some near-term overhead resistance levels at $51.35 to its 52-week high at $51.89 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in VMED as long as it's trending above its 50-day at $49.86 or above some key near-term support area at $49.50 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that hits near or above 4.38 million shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then VMED will set up to enter new 52-week high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are $55 to $60.

ICU Medical

ICU Medical (ICUI) is engaged in the development, manufacture and sale of innovative medical devices used in infusion therapy, oncology and critical care applications. This stock closed up 6.4% at $71.76 on Friday.

Friday's Volume: 280,000

Average Volume: 104,328

Volume % Change: 137%

>>4 Hot Stocks to Trade (or Not)

Shares of ICUI ripped higher on Friday after the AP published an article that said the company is exploring a sale and has attracted takeover interest from rival CareFusion. In addition to CareFusion, at least one major private equity firm has also been carrying out due diligence and is weighting an offer, according to people familiar with the matter.

From a technical perspective, ICUI exploded higher here right above some near-term support at $66.78 with above-average volume. This move is quickly pushing shares of ICUI within range of triggering a major breakout trade. That trade will hit if ICUI manages to take out its 52-week high at $72 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in ICUI as long as it's trending above $70, and then once it sustains a move or close above $72 with volume that hits near or above 104,328 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then ICUI will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are $80 to $90.

DTE Energy

DTE Energy (DTE) is engaged in the business of providing electricity and natural gas sales, distribution and storage services throughout southeastern Michigan. This stock closed up 1% at $67.51 on Friday.

Friday's Volume: 3.14 million

Average Volume: 1.06 million

Volume % Change: 218%

>>5 Stocks Insiders Love Right Now

From a technical perspective, DTE bounced modestly higher here right above some near-term support levels at $66 to $65.45 with above-average volume. This bounce is coming after shares of DTE recently fell from $73.32 to $65.45. The downside volatility has been abated for now and shares of DTE are quickly moving within range of triggering a near-term breakout trade. That breakout will hit if DTE manages to clear some near-term overhead resistance at $68.14 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in DTE as long as it's trending above Friday's low of $66.57 or above more support at $66 and then once it sustains a move or close above $68.14 with volume that hits near or above 1.06 million shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then DTE will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at its 50-day moving average of $70.09 to $72. Any high-volume move above $72 to $72.18 will then put its 52-week high at $73.32 into range for shares of DTE.

Demandware

Demandware (DWRE) provides a software-as-a-service e-commerce solution that enables companies to easily design, implement and manage their own customized e-commerce sites, including websites, mobile applications and other digital storefronts. This stock closed up 5.4% at $32.87 on Friday.

Friday's Volume: 631,000

Average Volume: 241,583

Volume % Change: 137%

>>3 Tech Stocks Under $10 to Watch

From a technical perspective, DWRE skyrocketed higher here and broke out above some near-term overhead resistance at $31.88 with above-average volume. This move is quickly pushing shares of DWRE within range of triggering another major breakout trade. That trade will hit if DWRE manages to take out some near-term overhead resistance levels at $33.71 to $33.89 and then once it clears its all-time high at $34.27 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in DWRE as long as it's trending above $31.88 or Friday's low of $31.28, and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that hits near or above 241,583 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then DWRE will set up to enter new all-time-high territory above $34.27, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are $40 to $43.

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

-- Written by Roberto Pedone in Madison, Wis.

RELATED LINKS:

>>Sneak Peek: 5 Dividend Hikes on the Horizon
>>Why Fannie Got Spanked

>>Stocks Are in Make-or-Break Mode: 5 Must-See Charts

Follow Stockpickr on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.

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

Roberto Pedone, based out of Madison, 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.