Stock Quotes in this Article: ALB, EBAY, EWBC, LZB, USG

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 rising on unusual volume today.

 

East West Bancorp
East West Bancorp (EWBC) operates as the holding company for East West Bank, which provides a range of personal and commercial banking services to small and medium-sized businesses, business executives, professionals, and other individuals in California. This stock is trading up 6.2% at $21.53 in recent trading.

Today’s Volume: 2.8 million

Average Volume: 1 million

Volume % Change: 293%

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From a technical perspective, EWBC is gapping up sharply higher with above-average volume. This move is quickly pushing EWBC within range of taking out its 50-day at $21.68 and its 200-day at $22.07.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in EWBC once it sustains a move or close above those moving averages with volume that tracks in near or above 1,028,310 shares. If we get that action soon, then EWBC will setup to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $23 to $24.

eBay

eBay (EBAY) is a global commerce platform and payments provider. This stock is trading up 3.9% at $50.08 in recent trading.

Today’s Volume: 25.9 million

Average Volume: 11.1 million

Volume % Change: 242%

Shares of EBAY are ripping higher here after the company reported third-quarter profits that beat Wall Street forecasts by a penny on sales gains by its PayPal and Marketplace units.

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From a technical perspective, EBAY is bouncing strongly to the upside here right around its 50-day moving average of $47.76 with monster volume. This move is quickly pushing EBAY within range of triggering a major breakout trade. That trade will hit once EBAY manages to take out some near-term overhead resistance levels at $50.24 to $50.65 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in EBAY as long as its trending above its 50-day, and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that hits near or above 11.1 million shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then look for EBAY to tag $55 to $60 in the near future. Keep in mind that any move above $50.65 will push EBAY into new 52-week high territory, which would be bullish technical price action.

USG

USG (USG), through its subsidiaries, is a manufacturer and distributor of building materials. This stock is trading up 6.8% at $24.29 in recent trading.

Today’s Volume: 6.1 million

Average Volume: 2.9 million

Volume % Change: 187%

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From a technical perspective, USG is skyrocketing higher here right off its 50-day moving average of $21.28 with monster volume. This move is quickly pushing USG within range of triggering a major breakout trade. That trade will hit once USG manages to clear some near-term overhead resistance levels at $23.34 to $24.23 with high volume. At last check, USG has hit an intraday high of $24.41 and volume is well above its three-month average action of 2,935,330 shares.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in USG as long as it’s trending above $23, and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that hits near or above 2,925,330 shares. If USG can maintain that trend, then this stock will setup to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance level at $26 to $30.

Albemarle

Albemarle (ALB) is a developer, manufacturer and marketer of specialty chemicals, which meet customer needs across a range of end markets, including the petroleum refining, consumer electronics, plastics/packaging, construction, automotive, lubricants, pharmaceuticals, crop protection, food-safety and custom chemistry services markets. This stock is trading up 2.2% at $55.11 in recent trading.

Today’s Volume: 2 million

Average Volume: 929,375

Volume % Change: 196%

Shares of ALB are moving modestly higher despite the fact that the company said that its third-quarter net income dropped 14.5% and warned that the fourth quarter will be even more difficult.

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From a technical perspective, ALB is bouncing higher here right off some near-term support at $52 with above-average volume. This move has started to push ALB into breakout territory above some near-term overhead resistance levels at $54.63 to $54.64, and above its 50-day at $55.14.

Traders should look to play the next major breakout for ALB. That trade will hit once ALB manages to clear some more overhead resistance at $56.83 with high volume. Traders should now look for long-biased trades in ALB as long as its trending above its 50-day, and then once it sustains a move or close above $56.83 with volume that hits near or above 929,375 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then ALB will setup to re-test or possibly take out its next major overhead resistance levels at $9.70 to $61.23.

La-Z-Boy

La-Z-Boy (LZB) manufactures, markets, imports, distributes and retails upholstery products, accessories and casegoods furniture products. This stock is trading up 8.4% at $16.97 in recent trading.

Today’s Volume: 1.3 million

Average Volume: 423,055

Volume % Change: 265%

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From a technical perspective, LZB is gapping up sharply higher here with heavy volume into breakout territory above some near-term overhead resistance levels at $15 to $15.68. This move has also started to push LZB above its previous 52-week high of $16.43.

Traders should continue to look for long-biased trades in LZB as long as its trending above today’s low of $15.85 with strong upside volume flows. I would consider any upside volume day that registers near or above its three-month average volume of 423,055 shares as bullish. If LZB can maintain that trend, then look for this stock to tag $20 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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At the time of publication, author had no positions in stocks mentioned.

Roberto Pedone, based out of Windermere, Fla., is an independent trader who focuses on stocks, options, futures, commodities and currencies. He is also an outside contributor to Beconequity.com and maintains the website Maddmoney.net, which he sold to Blue Wave Advisors in 2008. Roberto studied International Business at The Milwaukee School of Engineering, and he spent a year overseas studying business in Lubeck, Germany.