Stock Quotes in this Article: CVTI, IILG, MXWL, XYL

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.

>>5 Hated Earnings Stocks You Should Love

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.

>>5 Rocket Stocks Ready for Blastoff

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

Maxwell Technologies

Maxwell Technologies (MXWL), together with its subsidiaries, develops, manufactures and markets energy storage and power delivery products worldwide. This stock closed up 6.5% to $16.64 in Wednesday's trading session.

Wednesday's Volume: 1.62 million

Three-Month Average Volume: 1.04 million

Volume % Change: 115%

From a technical perspective, MXWL ripped higher here right above some near-term support at $15.05 with above-average volume. This move pushed shares of MXWL into breakout and new 52-week-high territory, since this stock cleared or flirted with some near-term overhead resistance levels at $16.33 to $17.02. Market players should now look for a continuation move to the upside in the short-term if MXWL manages to take out its new 52-week high at $17.15 with strong volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in MXWL as long as it's trending above Wednesday's low of $16.16 or above more support at $15.05 and then once it sustains a move or close above $17.15 with volume that hits near or above 1.04 million shares. If we get that move soon, then MXWL will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that move are $20 to $22.

Covenant Technologies

Covenant Technologies (CVTI), together with its subsidiaries, offers truckload transportation and brokerage services in the continental U.S. This stock closed up 10.2% to $10.84 in Wednesday's trading session.

Wednesday's Volume: 84,000

Three-Month Average Volume: 52,581

Volume % Change: 50%

From a technical perspective, CVTI ripped sharply higher here back above its 50-day moving average of $10.21 with above-average volume. This move pushed shares of CVTI into breakout territory, since this stock took out some near-term overheard resistance levels at $10.07 to $10.45. This sharp spike higher on Wednesday is quickly pushing shares of CVTI within range of triggering another breakout trade. That trade will hit if CVTI manages to take out some near-term overhead resistance at $11 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in CVTI as long as it's trending above Wednesday's low of $9.96 or above $9.50 and then once it sustains a move or close above $11 with volume that hits near or above 52,581 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then CVTI will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $11.97 to its 52-week high at $12.29.

Interval Leisure Group

Interval Leisure Group (IILG), together with its subsidiaries, provides membership and leisure services to the vacation industry in the U.S., the U.K. and internationally. This stock closed up 2.6% at $19.61 in Wednesday's trading session.

Wednesday's Volume: 678,000

Three-Month Average Volume: 257,869

Volume % Change: 145%

From a technical perspective, IILG spiked notably higher here right above its recent 52-week low of $18.96 with above-average volume. This stock recently gapped down sharply from over $25 to under $21 with heavy downside volume. Following that move, shares of IILG continued to slide lower and the stock hit a new 52-week low of $18.96. That said, shares of IILG are now starting to rebound off that $18.96 low and off extremely oversold levels, since its current relative strength index reading is 22.54. Oversold can always get more oversold, but it's also an area where a stock can make a powerful bounce higher from.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in IILG as long as it's trending above its 52-week low of $18.96 and then once it sustains a move or close above Wednesday's intraday high of $20.23 to some more near-term overhead resistance at $21.39 with volume that hits near or above 257,869 shares. If that move gets underway soon, then IILG will set up for a potential powerful rebound back towards its 50-day moving average of $24.99 or its 200-day moving average of $25.42.

Xylem

Xylem (XYL) is engaged in the design, manufacture and application of engineered technologies for the water and wastewater application. This stock closed up 1.4% at $37.82 in Wednesday's trading session.

Wednesday's Volume: 2.06 million

Three-Month Average Volume: 1.07 million

Volume % Change: 125%

From a technical perspective, XYL trended modestly higher here right above its 50-day moving average of $36.45 with above-average volume. This move is quickly pushing shares of XYL within range of triggering a major breakout trade. That trade will hit if XYL manages to take out some near-term overhead resistance levels at $38.37 to its 52-week high at $39.79 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in XYL as long as it's trending above its 50-day at $36.45 or above more near-term support at $36.20 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that's near or above 1.07 million shares. If that breakout kicks off soon, then XYL will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory above $39.79, 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.


RELATED LINKS:







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 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.