Stock Quotes in this Article: AUXL, FARO, Q, ALSN

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 recently.

Allison Transmissions

Allison Transmission (ALSN) designs and manufactures automatic transmissions for medium- and heavy-duty commercial vehicles, and medium- and heavy-tactical U.S. military vehicles. This stock closed up 3.1% to $30.61 in Friday's trading session.

Friday's Volume: 2.21 million

Three-Month Average Volume: 762,955

Volume % Change: 237%

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From a technical perspective, ALSN jumped higher here and traded into new all-time-high territory with above-average volume. This stock has been uptrending strong for the last three months and change, with shares moving higher from its low of $23.51 to its intraday high of $31.27. During that uptrend, shares of ALSN have been consistently making higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. Market players should now look for a continuation move higher in the short-term if ALSN manages to take out Friday's high of $31.27 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in ALSN as long as it's trending above some near-term support at $29 and then once it sustains a move or close above Friday's high of $31.27 with volume that hits near or above 762,955 shares. If we get that move soon, then ALSN will set up to enter new all-time-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that move are $35 to $40.

Quintiles Transnational

Quintiles Transnational (Q) provides biopharmaceutical development services and commercial outsourcing services in the Americas, Europe, Africa and the Asia-Pacific. This stock closed up 1.8% at $53.15 in Friday's trading session.

Friday's Volume: 1.28 million

Three-Month Average Volume: 537,255

Volume % Change: 138%

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From a technical perspective, Q rose modestly higher here and broke out into new all-time-high territory above some near-term overhead resistance at $52 with above-average volume. This stock has been uptrending strong for the last month, with shares moving higher from its low of $45.25 to its intraday high of $53.17. During that uptrend, shares of Q have been consistently making higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. Market players should now look for a continuation move higher in the short-term if Q manages to take out Friday's high of $53.17 with strong volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in Q as long as it's trending above Friday's low of $51.86 or above more support at $50 and then once it sustains a move or close above its all-time high at $53.17 with volume that's near or above 537,255 shares. If we get that move soon, then Q will set up to enter new all-time-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that move are $57 to $60.

Auxilium Pharmaceuticals

Auxilium Pharmaceuticals (AUXL), a specialty biopharmaceutical company, together with its subsidiaries, develops and markets pharmaceutical products worldwide. This stock closed up 3% at $26.80 in Friday's trading session.

Friday's Volume: 2.03 million

Three-Month Average Volume: 1.13 million

Volume % Change: 145%

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From a technical perspective AUXL jumped notably higher here right above some near-term support at $25 with above-average volume. This move is quickly pushing shares of AUXL within range of triggering a big breakout trade. That trade will hit if AUXL manages to take out some key overhead resistance levels at its 52-week high at $27.47 to some past overhead resistance at $29.37 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in AUXL as long as it's trending above Friday's low of $26.10 or above more support at $25 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that's near or above 1.13 million shares. If that breakout hits soon, then AUXL will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that move are $35 to $37.

FARO Technologies

FARO Technologies (FARO), together with its subsidiaries, designs, develops, manufactures, markets and supports software-based three-dimensional measurement and imaging systems for manufacturing, industrial, building construction and forensic applications. This stock closed up 4.4% at $54.25 in Friday's trading session.

Friday's Volume: 220,000

Three-Month Average Volume: 134,603

Volume % Change: 85%

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From a technical perspective, FARO ripped higher here with above-average volume. This stock has been uptrending strong for the last few weeks, with shares moving higher from its low of $48.70 to its intraday high of $54.30. During that uptrend, shares of FARO have been consistently making higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. Market players should now look for a continuation move higher in the short-term if FARO manages to take out its 50-day moving average of $54.31 with strong volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in FARO as long as it's trending above Friday's low of $51.92 or above more support at $50 and then once it sustains a move or close above $54.31 with volume that's near or above 134,603 shares. If we get that move soon, then FARO will set up to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $58.28 to its 52-week high at $60.91.

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.