Stock Quotes in this Article: GME, ISIS, OPTR, SSRI, BNNY

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. Many times when above average volume moves into 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.

 

Isis Pharmaceuticals

Isis Pharmaceuticals (ISIS) is engaged in antisense technology, exploiting a drug discovery platform to create a pipeline of drugs. This stock is trading up 9.1% at $14.87 in recent trading.

Today’s Volume: 1.6 million

Average Volume: 1 million

Volume % Change: 174%

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From a technical perspective, ISIS is ripping higher here right off some near-term support at $13.50 with heavy volume. This move has pushed ISIS into breakout territory and 52-week-high territory, since the stock has taken out some past overhead resistance levels at $13.60 to $14.05.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades as long as ISIS is trending above $13.60 with strong upside volume flows. I would consider any upside volume day that registers near or above 1 million shares as bullish. If ISIS can maintain that trend, then this stock has a great chance of hitting $20 in the near future.

Optimer Pharmaceuticals

Optimer Pharmaceuticals (OPTR) is a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing hospital specialty products. This stock is trading up 5.2% at $15.82 in recent trading.

Today’s Volume: 416,000

Average Volume: 402,818

Volume % Change: 113%

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From a technical perspective, OPTR is bouncing strongly here right near its 50-day moving average of $14.93 with heavy above average volume. This move is quickly pushing OPTR within range of triggering a major breakout trade. That trade will hit once OPTR takes out some past overhead resistance levels at $15.87 to $16.39 with high volume.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in OPTR as long as its trending above its 50-day, and then once it sustains a move or close above $15.87 to $16.39 with volume that’s near or above 402,818 shares. At last check, OPTR has hit an intraday high of $15.89 and volume is just starting to track in above 402,818 shares. If OPTR can trigger that breakout soon, then this stock has an excellent chance of re-testing or possibly taking out its 52-week high of $17.95.

Annies

Annies (BNNY) is a natural and organic food company offering consumers products in packaged food categories. This stock is trading up 5.1% at $43.70 in recent trading.

Today’s Volume: 399,000

Average Volume: 255,133

Volume % Change: 242%

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Shares of BNNY are ripping higher today after SunTrust initiated the stock with a buy rating and set a $50 price target.

From a technical perspective, BNNY is bouncing strong here right near its 50-day moving average of $40.29 with heavy volume. This move has pushed BNNY into near-term breakout territory, since the stock has moved above some overhead resistance levels at $42.48 to $43.17. This action is also pushing BNNY within range of an even bigger breakout trade. That trade will hit once BNNY takes out some past overhead resistance at $44.68 to $45 with high volume. That $45 level happens to be BNNY’s all-time.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in BNNY as long as it’s trending above its 50-day at $40.29, and then once it sustains a move or close above $44.68 to $45 with volume that’s near or above 255,133 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then BNNY will have a great chance of heading north of $50 as the stock hits new all-time highs.

Silver Standard Resources

Silver Standard Resources (SSRI) is a silver resource company with properties located in Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile, Mexico, Peru and the U.S. This stock is trading up 4% at $15.43 in recent trading.

Today’s Volume: 837,000

Average Volume: 849,211

Volume % Change: 90%

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From a technical perspective, SSRI is following through with upside strength today after this stock bounced hard off its 50-day moving average of $12.57 on Friday. This move is coming with volume, and it’s pushing SSRI into breakout territory above some near-term overhead resistance at $15.20.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in SSRI as long as it’s trending above its 50-day at $13.82 with strong upside volume flows. I would consider any upside volume day that registers near or above 849,211 shares as bullish. Is SSRI can maintain that trend, and more importantly its trend above today’s low of $14.95, then this stock has a great chance of re-testing or possibly taking out its next major overhead resistance level at $18.34.

GameStop

GameStop (GME) is a multichannel video game retailer. It sells new and used video game hardware, physical and digital video game software, accessories, as well as personal computer entertainment software and other merchandise. This stock is trading up 4.9% at $20.20 in recent trading.

Today’s Volume: 3.8 million

Average Volume: 3.4 million

Volume % Change: 88%

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From a technical perspective, GME is gapping up sharply higher here with above average volume. This move pushed GME through some near-term overhead resistance levels at $19.33 to $19.52.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in GME once it clears its 200-day moving average of $20.71 with high volume. Look for a sustained move or close above that level with volume that’s near or above 3,355,140 shares. If we get that move soon, then GME has a great chance of re-testing or possibly taking out its next major overhead resistance levels at $22.60 to $24.

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.