Bullish options flow was detected in BIDU stock on January 10, 2020.

A whopping 12,800 calls traded, 1.9x expected, and implied vol increased over 4 points to 36%. 3/20 165 calls and 1/17 148 calls were the most active options, with total volume in those strikes over 4,400 contracts.

The bullish options flow could be the result of Barclays analyst Gregory Zhao.

On January 10, 2020, Barclays analyst Gregory Zhao raised his price target for Baidu to $150 from $140 while keeping an Equal Weight rating on the shares. Zhao said that Baidu was an industry laggard in 2019, but now investor interest is increasing in the wake of the phase one China and US trade deal scheduled to be signed next week. Zhao said that Wall Street seems to be pricing in a turnaround in China’s online advertising market in 2020 and he expects Baidu core to gradually recover from the trough in Q3.

On January 2, 2020, Asian media reported that China’s competition regulator is looking to expand the country’s antitrust law to internet companies, as players like Alibaba (BABA), Tencent (TCEHY) and Baidu (BIDU) expand their influence in the digital economy, The Nikkei’s Shunsuke Tabeta reports. The draft legislation would extend the definition of what constitutes a dominant position with potential to harm competition, adding companies’ ability to collect and process data to the criteria, as well as the scale of their internet operations and first-mover advantage. China has blocked most of the services provided by Google (GOOGL), Facebook (FB) and other foreign search and social media networks, while Amazon (AMZN) last year announced plans to leave the country’s ecommerce market. This is the Chinese government blocking BIDU’s major competition which is bullish for the stock. Source: https://asia.nikkei.com/Business/China-tech/China-readies-wider-antitrust-law-to-cover-internet-companies

On December 31, 2019, Venture Beat reported that Chinese multinational tech firm Baidu is making progress in its ambition to launch a commercial robot-taxi fleet in mainland China, wrote Kyle Wiggers of Venture Beat. Baidu has indicated that its self-driving cars “have traveled more than three million kilometers, or about 1.8M miles, during tests in 23 Chinese cities to date, up from 2 million kilometers, roughly 1.2M across 13 cities as of July.” Source: https://venturebeat.com/2019/12/31/baidu-secures-licenses-to-test-self-driving-cars-in-beijing/

On December 18, 2019, Baidu, Inc. (NASDAQ: BIDU) and Samsung Electronics announced that Baidu’s first cloud-to-edge AI accelerator, Baidu KUNLUN, has completed its development and will be mass-produced early next year.

Baidu KUNLUN chip is built on the company’s advanced XPU, a home-grown neural processor architecture for cloud, edge, and AI, as well as Samsung’s 14-nanometer (nm) process technology with its I-CubeTM (Interposer-Cube) package solution.

The chip offers 512 gigabytes per second (GBps) memory bandwidth and supplies up to 260 Tera operations per second (TOPS) at 150 watts. In addition, the new chip allows Ernie, a pre-training model for natural language processing, to inference at a three times faster rate than that of conventional GPU/FPGA-accelerating models.

Leveraging the chip’s limit-pushing computing power and power efficiency, Baidu can effectively support a wide variety of functions including large-scale AI workloads, such as search ranking, speech recognition, image processing, natural language processing, autonomous driving, and deep learning platforms like PaddlePaddle.

Through the first foundry cooperation between the two companies, Baidu will provide advanced AI platforms for maximizing AI performance, and Samsung will expand its foundry business into High performance computing (HPC) chips that are dedicated for cloud and edge computing.

“We are excited to lead the HPC industry together with Samsung Foundry,” said OuYang Jian, Distinguished Architect of Baidu. “Baidu KUNLUN is a very challenging project since it requires not only high level of reliability and performance at the same time, but is also a compilation of the most advanced technologies in the semiconductor industry. Thanks to Samsung’s state of the art process technologies and competent foundry services, we were able to meet and surpass our goal to offer superior AI user experience. ”

“We are excited to start a new foundry service for Baidu using our 14nm process technology,” said Ryan Lee, vice president of Foundry Marketing at Samsung Electronics. “Baidu KUNLUN is an important milestone for Samsung Foundry as we’re expanding our business area beyond mobile to datacenter applications by developing and mass-producing AI chips. Samsung will provide comprehensive foundry solutions from design support to cutting-edge manufacturing technologies, such as 5LPE, 4LPE, as well as 2.5D packaging.”

As higher performance is required in diverse applications such as AI and HPC, chip integration technology is becoming more and more important. Samsung’s I-CubeTM technology, which connects a logic chip and high bandwidth memory (HBM) 2 with an interposer, provides higher density/ bandwidth on minimum size by utilizing Samsung’s differentiated solutions.

Compared to previous technology, these solutions maximize product performance with more than 50% improved power/signal integrity. It is anticipated that I-CubeTM technology will mark a new epoch in heterogeneous computing market. Samsung is also developing more advanced packaging technologies, such as redistribution layers (RDL) interposer and 4x, 8x HBM integrated package.

finviz dynamic chart for  bidu

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