Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Molycorp: Sometimes You Get Lucky (MCP)

On Tuesday January 4th we posted "Rare Earth Mania: The Coming Opportunity for Buyers of Molycorp Puts (MCP)" with the stock at $61.02.
set caps on lock: FIRE
schtick worked out, the stock closed at $61.80 that day and traded as high as $62.80 on the 5th.
That means we got within a buck-eighty and twenty-four hours of the all-time high.
The puts:
..The Jan. 55's currently $2.95-3.10 or the Feb.  50's currently $3.90-4.10 would seem to have the best risk/reward characteristic.
These prices are for reference purposes, THEY ARE NOT SUGGESTED ENTRY POINTS.
CAPS off...
traded lower on both the 4th and the 5th but even at the reference price are doing okay.
With the stock down another 6.74% Thursday and another 5.61% Friday the Jan. 55's closed at $9.00-9.40; the Feb. 50's at $7.30-7.50.

So where was the luck?
Not in the short idea, that was pretty simple, the stock had better than quadrupled in the six months since the IPO. The company wouldn't be in production for another year. The lock-up period on insider selling was about to end.

The luck was in the fact that I got a key component of the thesis wrong, but the trade overcame that.

I was working from memory when I said in that Jan. 4 post that the lock-up period ended on the 20th.
The memory was faulty, the lock-up ends on the 25th.
The difference could have been disastrous, January options expire on the 22nd. See the problem?

On Wednesday after reading the Forbes link in "UPDATED-Rare Earth: "Molycorp Looks Like One Of The Greatest Private Equity Deals Ever" (MCP)" wherein the journalist said the lock-up would end in February I'm thinking "Hmmm...., there appears to be a discrepancy".

I checked the filings for the effective date, checked the final prospectus and the various S's to make sure there wasn't some additional time added to the boilerplate 180 days and reported back in an update.
But boy oh boy there was some luck involved.

Two takeaways for our readers.
1) If we spot a mistake we will correct it. As I said in Corrected--Dick Bove Sees Bank America Worth $15 IN BANKRUPTCY (BAC):
Big Oops:
I had $21 in the headline which violated one of our few rules:
You can spell like a 5-year-old, you can make jokes at anyone's expense, you can post pretty much anything but you have to GET THE NUMBERS RIGHT.
The fact that ZeroHedge had it wrong is no excuse.
Original post...
2) We do make mistakes.

See also:
UPDATED: Rare Earth Mania: What the Heck is Molycorp Worth? (MCP; SHZ; REE; AVL)