Stock Quotes in this Article: IMH, MSCI, PKG, AVG

WINDERMERE, Fla. (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.”

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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 that were rising on unusual volume on Tuesday.

 

MSCI

MSCI (MSCI) is a provider of investment decision support tools, including indices and portfolio risk and performance analytics, for use by institutions in managing equity, fixed income and multi-asset class portfolios. This stock closed up 6.2% at $27.20 in recent trading.

Tuesday's Volume: 4.5 million

Average Volume: 1.1 million

Volume % Change: 328.6%

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From a technical perspective, MSCI bounced higher here right off some near-term support at $26 with monster volume. This move has pushed MSCI into breakout territory, since the stock has cleared some near-term overhead resistance at $26.77. Shares of MSCI are also trending higher after the stock recently plunged from $36 to a low of $24.75 with heavy volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in MSCI once it triggers its next major breakout trade. That trade will hit once MSCI manages to clear some near-term overhead resistance at $28.72 with high volume. Look for long trades in MSCI as long as it’s trending above $26.77, and then once it sustains a move or close above $28.72 with volume that hits near or above 991,800 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then MSCI could rebound back towards its gap down day high that sits just above $32, or even to its 50-day at $33.71.

Packaging Corp. of America

Packaging Corp. of America (PKG) is a producer of containerboard and corrugated products in the U.S. This stock closed up 1.8% at $36.26 on Tuesday.

Tuesday's Volume: 2.8 million

Average Volume: 970,234

Volume % Change: 188%

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From a technical perspective, PKG bounced notably higher here right around some previous support at $34 with above-average volume. This move briefly pushed PKG into breakout territory, since the stock challenged some near-term overhead resistance at $36.68. Shares of PKG hit an intraday high of $36.96 and volume was well above its three-month average action of 936,914 shares.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in PKG as long as it’s trending above its 50-day at $33.19, and then once it sustains a move or close above $36.68 to $36.96 with volume that registers near or above 936,914 shares. If PKG can maintain that trend, and trigger that breakout soon, then this stock will have a great chance of trading north of $40 in the near future.

AVG Technologies

AVG Technologies (AVG) provides antivirus and Internet security products. This stock closed up 8.2% at $10.84 on Tuesday.

Tuesday's Volume: 2.2 million

Average Volume: 335,351

Volume % Change: 677%

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From a technical perspective, AVG exploded to the upside and back above its 50-day moving average of $10.28 with monster volume. This move is quickly pushing AVG within range of triggering a major breakout trade, which will hit once AVG manages to take out some near-term overhead resistance at $11.51 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in AVG as long as it is trending above its 50-day, and then once it sustains a move or close above $11.51 with volume that registers near or above 335,351 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then AVG will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $12.50 to $14.35.

Impac Mortgage Holdings

Impac Mortgage Holdings (IMH) focuses on mortgage and real estate services. This stock closed up 5.9% at $10.80 on Tuesday.

Tuesday's Volume: 262,289

Average Volume: 140,057

Volume % Change: 87%

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From a technical perspective, IMH bounced strong here right off some near-term support at $9.65 with above-average volume. This stock has been uptrending very strong for the last two months and change, with shares soaring from under $3 to its recent high of $11.94. During that uptrend, shares of IMH have been consistently making higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. That move has now pushed IMH within range of triggering a major breakout trade. That trade will hit once IMH manages to take out some near-term overhead resistance at $11.94 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in IMH as long as it’s trending above $9.65, and then once it takes out $11.94 with volume that registers near or above 136,029 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then look for IMH to trend up towards $15 or higher in the near future.

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

-- Written by Roberto Pedone in Winderemere, Fla.

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