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Posts Tagged ‘covered call trades’

Adding a Put to a Covered Call

When you buy a put for a covered call trade, you then have both a sold call and bought put on the stock you own.  This is called a “collar” as you have a  protective put on a covered call.  The classic collar has an at-the-money (ATM) call and put at the same strike price.  In the case of the covered call trader, the  bought put serves as additional downsize protection against a stock price decline.

When you add a put to a covered call trade, you are adding additional cost to the trade.  This will increase your cost basis for the trade. However, you can create a totally riskless covered call trade.  Let’s look at an example using XYZ.

XYZ is trading at $74.77 in the market.  You can sell the 75 Call for $4.20 and buy the 75 Put for $4.00.  If the stock is above 75 at closing, if will be called away and you gain $0.43 in profits (75-74.77+.20).  Additionally, we could sell the put if there is any value left before expiration.  In this scenario, you make money from the covered call side.

If XYZ is trading below 75 at expiration, the call will expire worthless but the put will have value.  You would exercise the 75 put which will give you $75.00 for the stock shares trading below the 75 strike price.  You would then make a profit of $0.43 on the protective put side of the trade.

XYZ
Stock Price         74.77
Sell 75 Call           4.20
Buy 75 Put           4.00
Net Premium           0.20
Net Cost         74.57
Downside Risk                –
Max Profit           0.43

 

This trade is a risk-free trade because the total cost basis ($74.57) is below both strike prices of 75.  Regardless of what happens to the stock price, you will receive $75.00 for your stock. You can say that this collar trade is an arbitrage trade because there was a positive difference between the call and put prices at the 75 strike price.  The return of $0.43 is only a 0.58% return.  When you add trading commissions to the cost basis, this can’t be arbitraged by a retail investor.  For more active traders, you can vary your timing of closing the call and put sides to increase your profit.  For example, when the sold call loses the majority of value, you can close this side by buying to close the call.  Then, you will own the stock with the put guarentee at the strike price.  There are numerous possibilities when you actively managed the collar trade if you make adjustments before expiration.

You can construct a similar trade with different strike prices for the call and put.  When you vary the strike prices this, you are changing the cost basis and risk exposure.  For example with the 75 covered call on XYZ, we might buy the 72.5 put for $3.15 (see table below).  This will give us a max profit of $1.05 and downsize risk of $1.22.

XYZ Stock
Stock Price         74.77
Sell 75 Call           4.20
Buy 72.5 Put           3.15
Net Premium           1.05
Net Cost         73.72
Downside Risk           1.22
Max Profit           1.05

 

The great part about this type of trade is that you are limiting the amount of downsize by using the blanket put.  If the stock market bottom falls out with a 10% correction, you will only lose $1.22 per covered call or 1.65%.

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Writing Out-Of-The-Money Covered Calls

If you are bullish on a specific stock, then you should consider writing an out-of-the-money (OTC) covered call.  This type of call includes a strike price that is above the current stock price.  You still get a call premium but is generally less than an at-the-money call.  But you also get the potential of stock appreciation because of the higher strike price of the call sold.  This creates a situation for potentially two income streams from one trade.

This trading strategy works best when you can confirm the stock being in an uptrend or if the stock is bouncing off a support level.  A support level would be something like a 50-day moving average or even a Bollinger Band that has been stretched on the bottom.

The key to this strategy is to be right about the stock price moving higher in the near future.  Due to the OTM call offering less premium than an ATM and having a low delta, they can be slow to lose value on a stock pullback.  This strategy should be used in special situations or during a slow moving bull market.

Also, you want to avoid this strategy when he stock has gapped up until the new price range is confirmed.  Stocks that gap up usually pull back before they stabliize in a new trading range.  However, a stock slowing moving up is a good opportunity for OTM writes.

This strategy works well when you have a down-day in the stock or market.  The stock price decline will usually be temporary down and will bounce back in a few trading days.  You need to be sure the market decline is not a permanent correction that will be sustained for months.

This is a good strategy for stocks you do not want called away in a flat market.  You can still get an increased profit if the stock price is above the entry price at expiration.  Then, you get an even bigger return if you get called out at the higher call strike price.

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Covered Call Strategies – Expiration Writing

There are many variations of the covered call trade.  The classic covered call is to select the trade, buy the stock and sell the ATM call.  In addition, there are a number of strategies that are variations of the classic call based on different trading ideas.  One covered call variation is expiration writing.

The investor will scan for short-term writes in the last two weeks of the current option cycle.  The trader is looking for stocks with high premium and high return on funds invested.  To get high returns over such a short time period usually indicates a high implied volatility and increased risk.  When IV is higher than actual volatility, then there is usually a pending event so you must research these trades very thoroughly.

One safer way to do this is to find a stock with higher volatility due to an event planned in advance.  Examine the stock to see when the event date is scheduled.  If the event will occur after the current expiration date, then you can trade in the current month calls.  The reason for this is that event volatility may increase premiums across both the current month and the next month option cycles.  This is a cool trick that most covered call writers had not heard of before.

This is not a risk free trade but it works if you are right about the timing of the event expiration being after the current month.  The key is to actually confirm the event date and not speculating about when it will occur.  Do not just go by the high volatility in two month alone as this does not indicate the event date.  If the IV is in line with the historical volatility, it may be a great covered call write anyway.

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Using Put-Call Ratios in Covered Call Trades

The Put-call ratio is a market sentiment statistic that has been around for quite some time and are followed by option traders.  This stat is based on open interest for each option strike price.  A put-call ratio is the number of put contracts divided by the number of call contracts open.  An increasing ratio is a clear indication that investors are starting to move toward instruments that gain when prices decline rather than when they rise. Since the number of call options is found in the denominator of the ratio, a reduction in the number of traded calls will result in an increase in the value of the ratio. This is significant because the market is indicating that it is starting to dampen its bullish outlook.

You can use these ratios when considering the strike price of the option that you are considering selling.  If there are more open calls than puts, you sell the strike price higher than current stock price as the indicator is showing a bullish sign.  If there are more puts, you should sell the stock price lower than the current stock price as this indicates a potential bearish move.  The ratios are influenced by option speculators who are gamblers, not stupid, very wise and putting up real dollars to back their options.

The put-call ratio is a true indicator of option market sentiment.  You can rely on the put-call ratio continuously because it is very reliable.  Recall that the idea of contrarian sentiment analysis is to measure the pulse of the speculative option crowd, who are wrong more than they are right. We should therefore be looking at the equity-only ratio for a purer measure of the speculative trader. In addition, the critical threshold levels should be dynamic, chosen from the previous 52-week highs and lows of the series, adjusting for trends in the data.

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How to Generate a 10% Return in 45 Days

In our Monthly Income Report, we look for opportunities to utilize option selling to generate income. While we focus on selling cash-secured puts and covered calls on high quality stocks, we sometimes identify high return trades. We like to have 2 or more stock or company events leading to positive confirmation that the stock will continue its trend. This month we have identified a stock with a bullish technical indicator that has potential to generate a 10% return in only 45 days.

Stock: Alkermes plc (ALKS) is a biopharmaceutical company. The Company is engaged in the researching, developing and commercializing pharmaceutical products that are designed to address medical needs of patients in therapeutic areas. The Company has a portfolio of marketed drug products and a clinical pipeline of products that address central nervous system (CNS) disorders, such as schizophrenia, depression, addiction and multiple sclerosis (MS).

Alkermes just announced positive preliminary top line results from ENLIGHTEN-1, the first of two key phase 3 studies in the ENLIGHTEN clinical development program for ALKS 3831, an investigational, novel, once-daily, oral atypical antipsychotic drug candidate for the treatment of schizophrenia. ENLIGHTEN-1 was a multinational, double-blind, randomized, phase 3 study that evaluated the antipsychotic efficacy, safety and tolerability of ALKS 3831 compared to placebo over four weeks in 403 patients experiencing an acute exacerbation of schizophrenia. The study also included a comparator arm of olanzapine, an established atypical antipsychotic agent with proven efficacy.

ALKS will announce earnings on July 27 but should be positive on this news.

This stock has formed a pattern called Flag (Bullish), providing a target price for the short-term in the range of 61.50 to 62.30 (see chart below). We think the stock can hit the target price within 6 weeks or less. The price recently crossed above its moving average signaling a new uptrend has been established. While we like the upside potential in ALKS, we want to protect the downside against market changes.

Technical Setup on Alkermes ALKS

Strategy: We want to sell a covered call on Alkermes using the August 2017 60 Call. For each 100 shares of ALKS stock you buy, sell one August 60 covered call option for a $54.50 ($58.70 – $4.20) debit or better. That’s potentially a 10.0% assigned return with a 7% downside protection. If you want more downside protection, you can purchase an August 55 PUT for less than $2.00 per option.

This is a higher risk trade than we normally place in the Monthly Income Report. However, this is a nice setup with a positive news announcement, positive technical confirmation and increased premium from selling options for income.

Let more about creating monthly income here.

How to Retire a Millionaire

From your early entry into the workforce and throughout your working life, you are always reminded to prepare for your retirement. We all realize the need to have income for the day when we end our working career. This is based on the classic mindset of saving for retirement. Most regularly deposit a portion of income in their 401 retirement plan. There is nothing wrong with this strategy as long as you are prepared to wait for your “someday” in 30-40 years or more. Many are behind in the amount needed to fund a comfortable retirement.

A June 2015 Government Accountability Office analysis found that that average Americans between the ages of 55 and 64 have accrued about $104,000 in retirement savings. Sound like a lot? Not when you realize that sum would translate into a $310 monthly payment if your money were invested in a lifetime annuity.*

There may be another option to complement your retirement. At Get Rich Investments, we focus on developing multiple streams of income. The strategy is simple, continue building monthly income until your investing income exceeds your current income. At this point, you have a monthly income to support your lifestyle and retire without having to scale back your living. The sooner you start building monthly income, the faster you will produce significant monthly income.

You can keep contributing to your 401K as this will be one stream of retirement income. Another income stream will be SSI if it is still a viable option when you retire. Then, you might want to consider building additional income streams through our strategies. You can start with a small account and watch it grow over time to your ultimate income producing investment. Of course, this will not happen overnight or next week as there is no get rich quick scheme.

How do we create multiple streams of income? We sell options such as cash-secured PUTs and covered call trades. Based on the type of stocks we invest, this is a lower risk strategy than small cap stocks. We also like to capture dividend income from stable, world class stocks. And, we diversify our income streams by investing in CEFs paying monthly dividends.

The amount of income you achieve will depend on your investment capital. Hey look, if we all had millions then we would already be retired. With our strategies you can compound your income over time to grow your monthly income. You can start with a small investment like you would with a 401 and add to it over time. It can compound faster than most envision. As your account grows, you diversify into more income streams such as CEFs using several types of investments.

If you spread your investments across these multiple streams of income, it will lower your risk of not having the income you desire. This is why we call our program the Monthly Income Newsletter. Yes, you can retire a millionaire!

Get started building your income today.

How to Beat the Market in 2017

As we start a new year, every investor should ask themselves this question: Did you beat the market in 2016? According to an article on CNBC “Most investors didn’t come close to beating the S&P 500”. The rationale is discussed as:

Bad market timing and poor stock picking kept most investors from fully reaping the gains of the bull market last year. “The average investor held too much in cash, was too concentrated in stocks that didn’t perform well and avoided financial stocks that rallied last year,” said Hart Lambur, co-founder and CEO of Openfolio, a social network with more than 70,000 members who share their investment portfolios.

The average investor on Openfolio had a gain of roughly 5 percent in 2016. That lagged the nearly 12 percent total return of the S&P 500, which includes dividends, by more than 7 percentage points last year. 

Part of the lag can be attributed to investors having a diversified portfolio. That is a good thing because it smooths volatility and can improve returns over long periods. Yet when you consider that a balanced portfolio of 60 percent U.S. stocks and 40 percent U.S. bonds would have generated roughly 7 percent last year, Openfolio investors still fall short by 2 percentage points.”

How can investors beat the market?

Our newsletter beat the S&P 500 handedly in 2016 with a 27.8% return! In reviewing the results we obtained from the perpetual covered call strategy during the past year. In terms of total return as tracked in the monthly spreadsheets, the average across all positions was 27.8% during 2016. In the past year ending 12/17, the S&P 500 only returned 12.75% and the DJIA returned 16.8%. Therefore, we more than doubled the S&P and beat the Dow Jones significantly while generated significantly more income. The average monthly income across our open positions was $152 for each position with 100 stock shares! AND this includes the cost of having a long put to protect against downside risk on each position.

The average cost of 100 shares across all positions was $5,278 which generated an average of $152 of income each month. A $50K portfolio will generate an average of $1500 per month while a $100K portfolio creates $3,000 every month! This is proof our income strategy works. We target a 2-3% return per month on average.

Join our investing community and beat the market in 2017!

Are You a Penta Millionaire Yet?

In a recent article published in Barron’s, “Penta Millionaires: the New Rising Class” it discusses families with net worth over $5 million as a fast growing class in America. While this is correct about the changing of wealth, it still separates the wealthy from the other classes. While we all strive to attain our definition of success, the media continues to focus on the upper class. Let me share a secret with you, you can still have a productive and fun-loving life without being in the top income bracket. This is why we write a monthly income newsletter – to help those wanting to better their life and create a sustainable monthly income.

Here are some excerpts from the Barron’s article:

It is fair to say that at no time in history have so many Americans become so rich—or amassed their wealth so quickly. When John D. Rockefeller took title as the country’s first billionaire, in 1916, it was as rare an event as sighting a white whale, and seven decades later, the number of billionaires had still only reached 44. Since then, however, the ranks of the megarich have surged ahead with a caffeinated velocity.

At every level of the wealth pyramid, according to Penta’s research partner Boston Consulting Group, the ranks of millionaire and multimillionaire households have expanded. Last year, for example, there were 492 U.S. billionaires, meaning that 100 new billionaires were created in the past five years alone. But the most interesting trend is a little further down the pyramid: The number of households with more than $5 million in investible assets just crossed the one million mark, up 5% from 2014.

Flash forward to recent times. The rank-and-file rich have grown by just 5% a year recently, but this steady if modest climb over seven years has actually delivered better results. We now have a million-strong army of very rich emerging from the ho-hum, low-inflation economic growth that has been coupled with robust capital markets. Many have, in this calm environment, quietly sold off their private business or cashed in their stock-option windfalls.

At Get Rich Investments, we focus on creating stream of income to improve life and become financially independent. Once you learn how to create monthly income, you now control your own destiny. We have several investing strategies focused on low risk trade such as covered calls, selling cash-secured puts, buying monthly dividend CEFs and collecting divide3nds from world-class stocks. This is the way to increase your wealth on a monthly basis.

One strategy is the Put Call Dividend (PCD) Strategy where we sell puts for income to enter a position, then sell covered calls for income while collecting dividends. This creates three income streams from a single investing position. This positions the investor in a low risk position as you can continue to create option income each month by selling puts and calls on the same stock. If the market goes up – you make income. Same for when a stock pulls back – keep selling options for income. It is like collecting rent on a rental property each month – without the hassles of a tenant.

I can’t promise you will be a Penta Millionaire, but you will definitely create more income and move toward becoming financially independent.

Learn more about getting started on your wealth journey today.

The Case for Income Investing

Today’s stagnant economy isn’t what it used to be. Societies, both individuals and governments, are saddled with enormous amounts of debt and yields have disappeared making it impossible to generate income from traditional fixed income investments.

Many top experts, including Jeff Gundlach who is considered the “Bond God,” believe this is the “new normal” and that rates could go even lower still. Which doesn’t offer a lot of hope to retirees who need income now, or future retirees who need to grow their portfolio at a much faster clip if they hope to retire at all.

Investors often overlook the value of selling options for income. This is in part because investors misunderstand the risk of these investments and how to manage this type of investment.  But many individual can benefit from these investments. If the income from selling puts and calls is reinvested every month, the investor can compound savings and buy more investments such as stocks, CEFs, etc.

This can be a growth strategy for investors no longer contributing to their portfolios or retirement accounts.  This type of portfolio of investments is likely to produce a higher yield than a growth stock portfolio. And, investors will benefit from the income even if the portfolio doesn’t have any capital appreciation or the market moves sideways. 

Investors can create a diversified portfolio for option selling by writing cash-secured puts, selling covered calls and owning dividend paying stocks and CEFs with monthly distributions.  If income is a goal, these option selling strategies and income investments could be worth a closer look.

I combine the strategies for market diversification of income opportunities.  Also, I combine then to create new investment vehicles.  The one strategy I prefer has 3 income opportunities: (1) selling put options to enter a stock, (2) collect dividends if put to me, and (3) sell covered calls until the stock is called away.

Where else, on even a modest portfolio, can you generate an extra $1,000 to $5,000 per month or more? Owning a basket of strong dividend paying blue chip stocks might earn you 3% to 5% per year. But to generate $5,000 per month in income you’d need a nest egg of $1.2 to $2 million dollars.

Get started collecting multiple streams of income today.

 

Covered Call of the Month – 26% Annualized Return on this Stock

You have heard all of the old adages about investing such as there is no free lunch and many more.  In general, these saying suggest that higher returns will always require higher risk of some type.  Still, money managers and hedge funds continue to attempt to ink out higher returns on a risk adjusted basis through a numerous variety of customized approaches to stock selection, asset allocation, hedging strategies and so on.  For them, this is the holy grail that generates higher returns than their competitors or market averages.  In my opinion, investors can simplify this process through covered call writing.

Covered call writing consists of selling call options on stock whose shares you own.  This strategy places the investor somewhere between stock ownership and fixed income investments.  While the investor owns shares, they also create income from the premium received from selling call options on those shares.  While this strategy will not produce wealth overnight, it does produce a steady stream of income while owning shares of stock.  This strategy is designed to produce an annual return in the area of 15% on conservative stocks and higher as investors write calls on higher volatility stocks.

Covered Call of the Month

Celgene (NASDAQ: CELG) ended the last trading session at $95.02. So far the stock has hit a 52-week low of $66.85 and 52-week high of $96.15. CELG has had an S&P Capital IQ 5 STARS (out of 5) ranking since 10/23/2008. On 1/13/2014 S&P Capital IQ equity analysts set a 12-Month price target of $104.00 for the stock. Celgene stock has been showing support around $93.83 and resistance in the $95.89 range.

For a hedged play on this stock, consider a Nov ’14 covered call with a 95 sold call for a net debit in the $89.77 area. The strategy has an 81 day duration, provides 5.53% downside protection and a 5.83% assigned return rate for a 26.25% annualized return rate (for comparison purposes only). This strategy has a 4 Key (out of 5) Low Relative Risk ranking.  

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