This energy stock is trading at a 52-week high, but there could be a pullback, expert warns

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Call it high energy.

Shares of oil and gas giant Kinder Morgan hit a fresh 52-week high on Wednesday, putting the stock up 30 percent in 2019. But Susquehanna’s Stacey Gilbert argues that while the action looks positive, people could be trying to game the rapid rally.

“This really is a fan favorite right now within this space because of its clean balance sheet, its clear visibility, and it’s certainly seeing … that momentum,” Gilbert said on CNBC’s “Trading Nation.” “All that being said, what I would say, from a sentiment perspective of what we’re seeing in both the options and kind of what’s trading out there in the stock, is we could be coming up to an area where it’s either breaking out or it’s really gone too far, too fast.”

Gilbert, head of derivative strategy at Susquehanna, said she’s noticed more buyers picking up $20 strike calls for Kinder Morgan. A strike call is a type of call option that allows an individual to buy shares of a security at a set price until a predetermined expiration date.

“That’s much more consistent with someone who may have a short position or [is] thinking that it’s overdone in terms of its rally, yet not wanting to be caught short here. So I wouldn’t argue that it’s a pound-the-table-bullish sentiment that we’re seeing right now in Kinder Morgan,” she said. “Even though there’s a real positive fundamental sentiment going longer term, in the short term, I do think there’s a little bit of concern that there could be a small pullback coming.”

Bill Baruch, president and founder of Blue Line Futures, was slightly more positive on the prospects for Kinder Morgan’s stock, highlighting the “good momentum” being fueled by the 50-day moving average crossing above the 200-day moving average.

“This should really bring a tailwind up to that peak from a couple years back when it recovered in 2016,” he said, adding that the stock will likely face some resistance if it’s able to rally to the $23 or $24 level.

“I think it gets there,” Baruch said on “Trading Nation.” “The real question is can it get out above there? And I think it could, if the broader market agrees. Getting above $24 would bring you to about $28 bucks.” It’s currently trading at $20 a share.

The commodity futures expert added that the Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund, an exchange-traded fund that tracks energy stocks commonly referred to as the XLE, is poised for gains after a week in the red.

“I like XLE because I think that crude oil has upside to $60 [a barrel],” he said. “We’re heading into a more seasonally bullish time of year for crude oil, and you could be long crude oil looking into May. I think that should bring some support for the broader energy sector.”

Crude oil prices fell Wednesday after a surge in U.S. crude output. The XLE fell by about 1 percent.

Disclosure: Susquehanna Financial Group is a market maker in the security Kinder Morgan.

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