Stock Quotes in this Article: ARLP, LVS, MAN, WMB

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.

Las Vegas Sands

Las Vegas Sands (LVS) operates fully integrated resorts featuring casino, hotel, entertainment, food and beverage, retail and convention center operations. This stock closed up 3.9% to $74.51 in Wednesday's trading session.

Wednesday's Volume: 8.19 million

Three-Month Average Volume: 4.49 million

Volume % Change: 187%

From a technical perspective, LVS spiked higher here right above its 50-day moving average of $69.66 with above-average volume. This move pushed shares of LVS into breakout and new 52-week-high territory, since this stock took out some near-term overhead resistance levels at $72.79 to $73.49. Market players should now look for a continuation move higher in the short-term if LVS can manage to take out Wednesday's high of $74.94 with bullish upside volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in LVS as long as it's trending above Wednesday's low of $71.40 or above its 50-day at $69.66, and then once it sustains a move or close above Wednesday's high of $74.94 with volume that hits near or above 4.49 million shares. If we get that move soon, then LVS will set up to enter new 52-week high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that move are $80 to $83.

ManpowerGroup

ManpowerGroup (MAN) provides workforce solutions and services. This stock closed up 1.1% at $80.11 in Wednesday's trading session.

Wednesday's Volume: 912,000

Three-Month Average Volume: 642,034

Volume % Change: 70%

From a technical perspective, MAN spiked modestly higher here right above its 50-day moving average of $77.67 with above-average volume. This stock has been trending sideways and consolidating for the last month and change, with shares moving between $76.94 on the downside and $82.01 on the upside. Shares of MAN are now starting to move within range of triggering a near-term breakout trade above the upper-end of its sideways trading chart pattern. That trade will hit if MAN manages to take out some near-term overhead resistance levels at $82.01 to its 52-week high at $82.48 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in MAN as long as it's trending above its 50-day at $77.67 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that hits near or above 642,034 shares. If that breakout hits soon, then MAN will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are $87 to $90.

Alliance Resource Partners

Alliance Resource Partners (ARLP) is a producer and marketer of coal mainly to major U.S. utilities and industrial users. This stock closed up 2% at $76.01 in Wednesday's trading session.

Wednesday's Volume: 95,000

Three-Month Average Volume: 55,575

Volume % Change: 65%

From a technical perspective, ARLP jumped higher here back above its 50-day moving average of $74.42 with above-average volume. This move is quickly pushing shares of ARLP within range of triggering a big breakout trade. That trade will hit if ARLP manages to take out some key overhead resistance levels at $76.94 to $77.07, and then once it takes out more resistance at $77.80 to its 52-week high at $78.99 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in ARLP as long as it's trending above Wednesday's low of $73.75 or above $73 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that's near or above 55,575 shares. If that breakout hits soon, then ARLP will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory above $78.99, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are $85 to $90.

The Williams Companies

The Williams Companies (WMB) operates as an energy infrastructure company. This stock closed up 1.4% at $36.78 in Wednesday's trading session.

Wednesday's Volume: 14.29 million

Three-Month Average Volume: 5.73 million

Volume % Change: 142%

From a technical perspective, WMB spiked modestly higher here right off its 50-day moving average of $35.78 with heavy upside volume. This stock has been uptrending a bit for the last few weeks, with shares moving higher from its low of $34.22 to its intraday high of $36.91. During that move, shares of WMB have been making mostly higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. That move has now pushed shares of WMB within range of triggering a major breakout trade. That trade will hit if WMB manages to take out some key overhead resistance at $37.47 to $37.79, and then once it clears its 52-week high at $38.57 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in WMB as long as it's trending above its 50-day at $35.78 or above its 200-day at $35.12 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that's near or above 5.73 million shares. If that breakout hits soon, then WMB will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory above $38.57, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are $45 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.