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Archive for the ‘Monthly Options’ Category

LRCX Diagonal Condor Earnings Play

Thursday, April 5th, 2018

This is a possible option play using the Diagonal Condor Earnings Strategy that we recently sent you details about.

Lam Research (LRCX) announces earnings after the close on Tuesday, April 17, 2018. The stock has been on a downtrend for the past several weeks, a good indication that expectations are seriously lowered.  We have seen many instances when lowered expectations have resulted in a higher post-announcement date regardless of how well or poorly the actual results were compared to estimates. If you agree with this prognosis, you might consider making these trades (when the stock is trading about $196):

Buy To Open # LRCX 18May18 180 puts (LRCX180518P180)
Sell To Open # LRCX 20Apr18 195 puts (LRCX180420P195) for a credit of $2.20  (buying a diagonal)

Buy To Open # LRCX 18May18 220 calls (LRCX180518C220)
Sell Open # LRCX 20Apr18 205 calls (LRCX180420C205) for a debit of $.30  (buying a diagonal)

This is the risk profile graph for the options which expire on Friday, April 20, 2018 at a time when LRCX was trading about $196 and assuming the implied volatility of the May 25 options will fall from their current 43 to 38 after the earnings announcement on April 17th:

LRCX Risk Profile Earnings Graph April 2018

LRCX Risk Profile Earnings Graph April 2018

The two spreads will involve an investment of about $1400 per pair of spreads.  The maintenance requirement is $1500 and there is a net credit of about $100 after commissions.  If the stock were to end up at any price between $195 and $205, the graph shows that a gain of about 50% on investment would come our way.

The break-even range extends from about a 5% drop to an 8% rise.  This is well within the 4.9% average fluctuation that LRCX has made over the past 8 quarterly announcements.

Since there is a net credit from selling the two spreads, one of the spreads essentially is guaranteed to make a profit.  If the stock were to end up at any price between $195 and $205, both April 20 short options would expire worthless and the May 18 options would still have significant residual value.

If the stock were to fluctuate so much that it ended up outside the $195 – $205 range, the expiring April 20 options could be rolled over to out-of-the-money options in the April 27 series, likely at a credit.  There would be 5 additional weeks where short-term premium might be collected so that the original spreads might ultimately prove to be profitable even though it did not work out as expected in the announcement week.

As with all investments, you should only make option trades with money that you can truly afford to lose.

Happy trading,

Terry

 

A Carmax Spread Trade to Put the Diagonal Condor Earnings Strategy to Work

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2018

A Carmax Spread Trade to Put the Diagonal Condor Earnings Strategy to Work:

Carmax (KMX) announces earnings before the market opens on Wednesday, April 4, 2018.  If anyone would like to place the spread trade that we suggest below, the order must be placed no later than the market close on Tuesday, April 3rd.

Here are the numbers we compiled for KMX for the last eight quarters:

The prices in green are lower than the last pre-announcement price, suggesting that expectations are rising.  Most companies we tested show much many more green numbers than KNX.  Most of the time, KMX showed a high correlation between the actual results and what the stock price did after the announcement (while one might expect this would be universally true, our back-testing and personal experience has proved otherwise).  While the direction of the change for KMX was highly consistent (beating estimates resulted in a higher stock price, and vice versa), the magnitude of the change was not consistent.

In the June 2017 announcement, earnings were a whopping 23% above estimates, but the stock only gained 4% after they became public. In the next quarter, September 2017, earnings exceeded estimates by only 3% while the stock gained 10%.

KMX does not seem consistently beat or fall behind estimates.  This is a different pattern than we see in many companies who low-ball guidance, and then exceed estimates by a large amount quarter after quarter.  KMX does not seem to do this.

The average post-announcement stock price change for KMX was 4.9%.  This is less than the current option prices which have priced in a likely 5.7% change.  Someone who likes the stock might take advantage of the higher option prices and write an out-of-the-money call against their stock, and collect some nice premium in addition to some price appreciation if the stock manages to move higher.

We do not have a strong feeling concerning which way we feel the stock is headed after next week’s announcement other than that we think it will probably go in the same direction as the actual results compared to estimates. Since there is no clear pattern of how well the company does compared to estimates, this leaves us with a neutral position on the direction the stock might take after the announcement.

We have developed what we call the Diagonal Condor Earnings Strategy as our preferred options play prior to announcements.

Based on our neutral outlook on KMX, these are the spreads we placed for the upcoming announcement:

Buy to Open KMX 11May18 58 puts (KMX180511P58)
Sell to Open KMX 06Apr18 61 puts (KMX180406P61) for a credit of $.08  (buying a diagonal)

Buy to Open KMX 11May18 67 calls (KMX180511C67)
Sell to Open KMX 06Apr18 64 calls (KMX180406C64) for a credit of $.08 (buying a diagonal)

The net maintenance requirement (investment) on these spreads is $294 per pair ($300 – $16 plus $10 commission), and we have a net credit of $6 per pair in the account.

This is what the risk profile graph looks like after the market close on April 6, assuming that implied volatility (IV) of the May options falls by 3, from the current 33 to 30 (which is consistent with prior earnings week IV drops for 5-week-out options).

With KMX currently trading just below $62, the graph shows that we should end up with a gain if the stock ends up at any price between $59 and $67 on Friday, April 6th.  The sweet spot of the graph shows an approximate gain of $200 (about 66%) if the price ends up between $61 and $64.

If the stock fluctuates by its average post-announcement amount (4.9%), it would end up somewhere between about $59 and $65. In six of the last eight quarters, the fluctuation would have landed somewhere inside of this range, and in two of the quarters, it would not have.

To summarize our thinking, based on the level of IV for the options prior to the announcement (67) compared to IV for further-out options (33), investors do not get unduly excited about earnings announcements from KMX. The stock generally fluctuates after the announcement in the same direction as the results compared to estimates.  The company does not show a pattern of either consistently beating or falling behind estimates.  We believe this pattern is a perfect candidate for the options play outlined above which is essentially a neutral outlook, neither particularly bullish or bearish, but does best if the stock only fluctuates moderately after the announcement.

Is Stamps.com (STMP) Ready to Resume Higher?

Sunday, April 1st, 2018

This week we are looking at another of the Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 List companies.  We use this list in one of our options portfolios to spot outperforming stocks and place option spreads that take advantage of the momentum.

Terry

Is Stamps.com (STMP) Ready to Resume Higher?

Zacks research recently wrote a compelling article outlining why STMP is poised for further gains.  As well, this analyst believes there is potential for about a 30% upside based on their recent price target revision.

From a technical perspective, STMP has been consolidating sideways following a gap up in late February that was inspired by a stellar earnings report.  The consolidation is an indication of strength when considering that the markets have been under pressure as of late.  Buyers have stepped in to keep the stock trading above the $190 price point and an upside hurdle is seen around $210 as it has held the stock lower on a few attempts this year.

STMP Chart March 2018

STMP Chart March 2018

*source Tradingview.com

If you agree there’s further upside ahead for Stamps.com, consider this trade which is a bet that the stock will continue to advance over the next four weeks, or at least not decline very much.

Buy To Open STMP 27APR18 192.5 Puts (STMP180427P192.5)
Sell To Open STMP 27APR18 195 Puts (STMP180427P195) for a credit of $0.98 (selling a vertical)

This price was $0.02 less than the mid-point of the option spread when STMP was trading near $201.  Unless the stock rallies quickly from here, you should be able to get close to this amount.

Your commission on this trade will only be $2.50 per spread (the rate charged by thinkorswim for Terry’s Tips’ subscribers).  Each contract would then yield $95.50 and your broker would charge a $250 maintenance fee, making your investment $154.50 ($250 – $95.50).  If STMP closes at any price above $195.00 on April 27, both options would expire worthless, and your return on the spread would be 62% (778% annualized).

Changes to Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 This Week:

IBD Underlying Updates March 29, 2018

IBD Underlying Updates March 29, 2018

We have found that the Investor’s Business Daily Top 50 List has been a reliable source of stocks that are likely to move higher in the short run.  Recent additions to the list might be particularly good choices for this strategy, and deletions might be good indicators for exiting a position that you might already have on that stock.

As with all investments, you should only make option trades with money that you can truly afford to lose.

Happy trading,

Terry

Diagonal Condor Earnings Strategy

Monday, March 26th, 2018

Summary of Strategy: Based on 17 years of studying price changes following an earnings announcement, Terry’s Tips has designed a strategy  which has a high probability of successfully navigating the extreme volatility that usually accompanies quarterly earnings reports.  The strategy is based on the observation that there is very little correlation between the actual numbers reported and what the stock does after the announcement.  Stock price fluctuations tend to be larger in announcement weeks and smaller in subsequent weeks.  That is just about all we can say about most earnings events, except that we have identified one indicator that appears an average of only once a year for most companies, and when this indicator is triggered, the stock has a much higher probability of going up than down.

The Diagonal Condor Earnings Strategy only applies to companies which have weekly options. Two diagonal spreads are bought, one with puts and one with calls.  The long side is in the furthest out weekly series (usually six weeks out) and the short side is the weekly series that expires just after the earnings announcement.  The long sides are well out of the money and the short sides are at strikes much nearer to the current stock price, and each spread is bought at a credit. Since the Implied Volatility (IV) of the short-term options is considerably higher than that of the longer-term options at earnings time, a credit can be established with a much smaller range between the strikes than is available when earnings is not a factor.

There is only one maintenance requirement for the two spreads because only one of the spreads can lose money, and the other one has a guaranteed profit of some sort.  The strike prices of the short options set up with a range of possible stock prices within which the investor hopes the stock ends up after the announcement.  If it does, both short-term options will expire worthless and the investor will bank both the original credit from the spreads and selling the residual long options. When this occurs, there is an immediate gain averaging between 30% and 50% of the initial net maintenance requirement.

As an alternative to cashing in the positions and taking a profit when there is a moderate stock price change after the announcement, near-the-money options could be sold in the next weekly series for additional premium to take advantage of the propensity of stock price fluctuations to be much smaller in the weeks following the earnings week fireworks.

The net effect of the Diagonal Condor Earnings Strategy is to use the higher option prices that exist during earnings week to inexpensively set up the 10K Strategy of calendar and diagonal spreads which is one of the foundation strategies of the Terry’s Tips program.  This strategy does best when the underlying stock does not fluctuate very much, and this is exactly what typically happens for most companies in the few weeks after quarterly earnings are announced.

If the stock fluctuates more than the investor wishes after the announcement, a potential short-term loss is likely, but there are still five remaining weekly series of options that could be sold against the long positions to recover the announcement-week loss.  The strike price of one of the long options (the one that the stock price moved away from) may be changed by buying a vertical spread so that the original maintenance requirement is not increased when slightly out-of-the-money options are sold against them in the next weekly series.  The in-the-money short-term option will be bought back and a slightly out-of-the-money option sold in the next weekly series.  The net changes at the end of expiration week should result in a net credit which will reduce the maximum possible loss (the original net maintenance requirement).

This strategy is designed to make a profit in the earnings week whenever the stock fluctuates by an amount which is about 20% less than the fluctuation baked into the earnings week options.  In those weeks when the fluctuation exceeds the number priced into the option prices, there will be up to five weeks for selling new premium to recover the losses caused by the excessive fluctuation.  Since these weeks will probably have only moderate weekly price changes, it should be possible to collect significant amounts of premium decay from the near-to-the-money short puts and calls each week.

A Look Back: About five years ago, we did a lot of work on a model which was designed to successfully predict the direction of a stock price change after an earnings announcement. The model was primarily based on the assumption that investor expectations played a greater role in how the stock moved after earnings than the actual results themselves. If expectations were too high, the stock would fall regardless of how good those results might be. We tried to get a handle on how high expectations were, based on several variables, including whisper numbers published by WhisperNumbers.com and how much the stock price rose or fell in the week or two before the announcement.

At one time, we successfully predicted the direction of the post-earnings change on 8 consecutive earnings plays (usually selling vertical credit spreads which we hoped would expire worthless), but then we ended up being wrong on a couple of consecutive ones, and we discontinued these plays. It became apparent that the whisper numbers we were dealing with were not particularly reliable. It was not clear how these numbers were compiled by WhisperNumbers.com. Of course, they said it was a proprietary algorithm, but they admitted to polling selected analysts while inviting the public to cast votes on their website. The composite estimates of analysts is supposed to be what defines expectations, so we wonder about these analysts who were asked to reveal their “true” estimates. If their opinions were indeed different, why wouldn’t they be telling their clients what they really believed rather than favoring a private company with their innermost thoughts. And asking individual investors what they were expecting, if they actually counted those votes, should be a contrary variable instead, since individual investors are notoriously wrong most of the time. Bottom line, we did not have confidence in those whisper numbers.

Now we want to try again, with a couple of changes. Instead of relying on whisper numbers, we will check what the stock price does in the days leading up to the announcement as an indication of the level of expectations, and also look at the historical record of earnings announcements for each company to see if we can identify any consistent patterns. We may also take a look at recent hedge fund or insider trading activity if there is any significant action that might help predict the direction of the post-announcement price change.

Equally important, we will use a different options strategy than we applied in the past. This time around, we will use diagonal spreads which we sell at a credit (or extremely low debit in some instances). The short side will be in the weekly series that expires on the Friday after the announcement, and the long side will be in the longest-out weekly series (usually six weeks later). We will place both a put and call credit spread, usually in the afternoon of the day before earnings are released. One of the two spreads will be guaranteed to make a profit (both the initial credit and whatever the residual five-week-out out-of-the-money option can be sold for).

The other spread may also be profitable, depending on the strikes that were selected. In the event that the stock moved so much that one of the spreads loses more money than the gaining spread makes, causing the combination of spreads not to be profitable at the end of expiration week, there will be about 5 more weeks that new premium (weeklys) might be sold against the remaining long option, hopefully enough so that a loss will be avoided.

If both spreads are successful, the entire play can begin and end in a single week. If the combination of spreads is not profitable, we will have to spend up to five weeks trying to recover from the too-high post-announcement stock price change by collecting new premium each week. If the strategy works out to be profitable in a single week over half the time (which I believe should be the case), and we can roll out of the others over five weeks or less, it certainly should be a profitable concept.

Case Study – Red Hat (RHT):  Let’s use Red Hat (RHT) as an example. They announced earnings after the close, on Monday, March 26, 2018. We were uncertain about the expectation level, so we gave ourselves a little wiggle room in both directions and sold both 3/30/18 puts and calls which were slightly out of the money. In the afternoon of March 26 when RHT was trading about $153, we made the following trades:

BTO # RHT 04May18 141 puts (RHT180504P141)
STO # RHT 29Mar18 148 puts (RHT180329P148) for a credit of $.11 (buying a diagonal)

BTO # RHT 04May18 162.5 calls (RHT180504C162.5)
STO # RHT 29Mar18 155 calls (RHT180329C155) for a credit of $.13 (buying a diagonal)

If the stock ended up on Thursday (markets would be closed on Good Friday) anywhere between $148 and $155, both these spreads would end up being profitable (both from the credit collected plus the value of selling the residual May 4 options). If either of the short options expired in the money, we would need to buy it back and close out all the positions if a profit could be made, or roll over the in-the-money option to the next week and collect some additional premium in an effort to eventually make a gain over the next five weeks.

The stock ended up at $149.51 which placed it between the 148 and 155 range of our short options, so both of them were about to expire worthless (and were bought back for $.05, with no commissions payable at thinkorswim).  For half our contracts, we sold the long side of these spreads for a total of $3.48.  This yielded a net profit of $357 (including the original credit) per pair of spreads after all commissions on our net maintenance requirement of $781, making it a gain of 46% for the week.  Not bad, but hopefully a whole lot less than we will eventually do on the contracts that we did not sell.

We did not close out our remaining contracts because we wanted to experiment with rolling short options to the next weekly series to take advantage of the expected quiet period for RHT after earnings week.

Near the close on Thursday we bought back both the soon-to-expire puts and calls for $.05 and sold 06Apr18 148 puts for $2.52 and 13Apr18 155 calls for $1.55.  This gave us a net credit if $387 per pair of original spreads and reduced our investment (net maintenance requirement) from $781 to $394.

Here is the risk profile graph for these positions per pair of spreads for the week ending April 6, 2018:

RHT Risk Profile Earnings April 2018

RHT Risk Profile Earnings April 2018

If RHT remains quiet as we expect, we might earn about $200 on our net investment of $394, or almost 40% in one week. Our break-even range for the week extends from a drop of $4 on the downside to a little more than $5 on the upside.  We will update this case study as the weeks go by going forward.

 

Arista Networks (ANET): Should You Buy the Dip?

Monday, March 26th, 2018

This week we are looking at another of the Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 List companies.  We use this list in one of our options portfolios to spot outperforming stocks and place option spreads that take advantage of the momentum.

Terry

Arista Networks (ANET): Should You Buy the Dip?

Upside price targets for Arista Networks have recently been raised by several analysts, here are two of them – Arista Networks PT Raised to $270.00 at BMO Capital Markets and Arista Networks PT Raised to $330 at Oppenheimer Following Management Meetings

ANET dipped lower in the past week inline with the broader market correction that took place.  The stock price ended the week at a horizontal level near $264 that has acted as both support and resistance in the year thus far.  Further support is seen slightly below horizontal support in the form of a rising trendline originating from a low posted in early November.  Most of the stocks listed in the IBD Top 50 list of companies have dipped lower as a result of last week’s market correction but ANET stands out as it has had a strong performance, relative to the list, since turning higher in early 2016.

ANET Chart March 2018

ANET Chart March 2018

If you agree there’s further upside ahead for Arista Networks, consider this trade which is a bet that the stock will continue to advance over the next four weeks, or at least not decline very much.

Buy To Open ANET 20APR18 255 Puts (ANET180420P255)
Sell To Open ANET 20APR18 260 Puts (ANET 180420P260) for a credit of $1.98 (selling a vertical)

This price was $0.02 less than the mid-point of the option spread when NVDA was trading near $265.  Unless the stock rallies quickly from here, you should be able to get close to this amount.

If you use our favorite broker for this trade, tastyworks, your commission on this trade will only be $1 per opening contract ($2 per spread) (and there is no commission on closing trades, only the $.10 clearing fee).  Each contract would then yield $196 and your broker would charge a $500 maintenance fee, making your investment $304 ($500 – $196).  If ANET closes at any price above $260.00 on April 20, both options would expire worthless, and your return on the spread would be 64% (735% annualized).

Changes to Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 This Week:

IBD Underlying Updates March 22, 2018

IBD Underlying Updates March 22, 2018

We have found that the Investor’s Business Daily Top 50 List has been a reliable source of stocks that are likely to move higher in the short run.  Recent additions to the list might be particularly good choices for this strategy, and deletions might be good indicators for exiting a position that you might already have on that stock.

As with all investments, you should only make option trades with money that you can truly afford to lose.

Happy trading,

Terry

Nvidia (NVDA) Is on the Verge of a Big Breakout

Sunday, March 18th, 2018

This week we are looking at another of the Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 List companies.  We use this list in one of our options portfolios to spot outperforming stocks and place option spreads that take advantage of the momentum.  The Terry’s Tips portfolio that trades these spreads in an actual account for subscribers to follow on their own or have trades made for them in their account through the free Auto-Trade service offered by thinkorswim has gained 79% so far in 2018.

Terry

Nvidia (NVDA) Is on the Verge of a Big Breakout

Several analysts have an optimistic outlook towards NVDA despite the stock trading near some important resistance.  Here are two of them – Things Are Going Right for NVIDIA and AMD and Semiconductor Stocks Soar to Highest Level in Decades Despite Deal Woes.

NVDA tested resistance at the big psychological $250 price point in the past week for the third time this year.  However, with momentum indicators showing no signs of a top and as triple tops are generally rare, the probabilities suggest sellers will give up defending the resistance level.  Retracements from the level have also become increasingly narrow since the initial approach in early February which provides a technical indication that buyers are regaining control.  When a big level such as the one we are seeing in Nvidia now breaks, it often accompanies some sharp upside follow through.

NVDA Chart March 2018 on the rise

NVDA Chart March 2018

*source Tradingview.com

If you agree there’s further upside ahead for Nvidia, consider this trade which is a bet that the stock will continue to advance over the next five weeks, or at least not decline very much.

Buy To Open NVDA 20APR18 245 Puts (NVDA180420P245)
Sell To Open NVDA 20APR18 250 Puts (NVDA180420P250) for a credit of $2.20 (selling a vertical)

This price was $0.02 less than the mid-point of the option spread when NVDA was trading near $250.  Unless the stock rallies quickly from here, you should be able to get close to this amount.

If you use our favorite broker for this trade, tastyworks, your commission on this trade will only be $1 per opening contract ($2 per spread) (and there is no commission on closing trades, only the $.10 clearing fee).  Each contract would then yield $218 and your broker would charge a $500 maintenance fee, making your investment $282 ($500 – $218).  If NVDA closes at any price above $250.00 on April 20, both options would expire worthless, and your return on the spread would be 77% (882% annualized).

Changes to Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 This Week:

IBD Underlying Updates March 15, 2018

IBD Underlying Updates March 15, 2018

We have found that the Investor’s Business Daily Top 50 List has been a reliable source of stocks that are likely to move higher in the short run.  Recent additions to the list might be particularly good choices for this strategy, and deletions might be good indicators for exiting a position that you might already have on that stock.

As with all investments, you should only make option trades with money that you can truly afford to lose.

Happy trading,

Terry

Will Paypal (PYPL) Continue Its Upward Momentum?

Monday, March 12th, 2018

This week we are looking at another of the Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 List companies.  We use this list in one of our options portfolios to spot outperforming stocks and place option spreads that take advantage of the momentum. The actual portfolio at Terry’s Tips where we place the trades we tell you about a couple of days later is now ahead 84% so far in 2018, and that includes our closing out the BABA spread last week at a slight loss when we could have made the max gain if we had waited three more days until expiration.  Even we make bad trades once in a while (although we still believe we made the prudent move – no one could have predicted that BABA would soar $11 in the last three days before expiration).

Terry

Will Paypal (PYPL) Continue Its Upward Momentum?

Several articles have recently been published on the positive outlook for PYPL.  Here are two of them – Paypal Holdings Stock Is Itching for a Breakout and BMO Capital Markets Boosts Paypal Price Target to $89.00.

As the above technical article has mentioned, the 20-period moving average on a weekly chart held Paypal stock higher following the earnings-inspired correction in early February.  PYPL has since climbed back above the same moving average on a daily chart, which has held declines in the month thus far.  The stock has also breached above the psychological $80 price point which had held prices lower in late February.

PYPL Chart March 2018

*source Tradingview.com

If you agree there’s further upside ahead for Paypal, consider this trade which is a bet that the stock will continue to advance over the next six weeks, or at least not decline very much.

Buy To Open PYPL 20APR18 77.5 Puts (PYPL180420P77.5)
Sell To Open PYPL 20APR18 80 Puts (PYPL180420P80) for a credit of $0.83 (selling a vertical)

This price was $0.02 less than the mid-point of the option spread when PYPL was trading near $81.  Unless the stock rallies quickly from here, you should be able to get close to this amount.

If you use our favorite broker for this trade, tastyworks, your commission on this trade will only be $1 per opening contract ($2 per spread) (and there is no commission on closing trades, only the $.10 clearing fee).  Each contract would then yield $81 and your broker would charge a $250 maintenance fee, making your investment $169 ($250 – $81).  If PYPL closes at any price above $80.00 on April 20, both options would expire worthless, and your return on the spread would be 48% (449% annualized).

Changes to Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 This Week:

We have found that the Investor’s Business Daily Top 50 List has been a reliable source of stocks that are likely to move higher in the short run.  Recent additions to the list might be particularly good choices for this strategy, and deletions might be good indicators for exiting a position that you might already have on that stock.

As with all investments, you should only make option trades with money that you can truly afford to lose.

Happy trading,

Terry

TD Ameritrade (AMTD): A Stable and Consistent Player

Monday, March 5th, 2018

This week we are looking at another of the Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 List companies.  We use this list in one of our options portfolios to spot outperforming stocks and place option spreads that take advantage of the momentum.

Terry

TD Ameritrade (AMTD): A Stable and Consistent Player

Several analysts have a bullish outlook for TD Ameritrade, here are two of them: TD Ameritrade Rating Reiterated by Goldman Sachs Group and TD Ameritrade PT Raised to $61.00

AMTD faced some volatile price action in February as the global equity markets fell under pressure and broadly corrected lower.  In the past week, AMTD broke to a fresh 19 year high prior to pulling back.  The bullish break is suggesting the stock has resumed higher within its broader uptrend while the pullback offers an entry point against support from the 20-period daily moving average.

AMTD Chart March 2018

AMTD Chart March 2018

*source Tradingview.com

If you agree there’s further upside ahead for TD Ameritrade, consider this trade which is a bet that the stock will continue to advance over the next five weeks, or at least not decline very much.

Buy To Open AMTD 6APR18 54.5 Puts (AMTD180406P54.5)
Sell To Open AMTD 6APR18 57.5 Puts (AMTD180406P57.5) for a credit of $0.98 (selling a vertical)

This price was $0.02 less than the mid-point of the option spread when AMTD was trading near $57.50.  Unless the stock rallies quickly from here, you should be able to get close to this amount.

If you use our favorite broker for this trade, tastyworks, your commission on this trade will only be $1 per opening contract ($2 per spread) (and there is no commission on closing trades, only the $.10 clearing fee).  Each contract would then yield $0.96 and your broker would charge a $210 maintenance fee, making your investment $110 ($206 – $96).  If AMTD closes at any price above $57.50 on April 6, both options would expire worthless, and your return on the spread would be 52% (597% annualized).

Changes to Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 This Week:

IBD Underlying Updates March 1, 2018

IBD Underlying Updates March 1, 2018

We have found that the Investor’s Business Daily Top 50 List has been a reliable source of stocks that are likely to move higher in the short run.  Recent additions to the list might be particularly good choices for this strategy, and deletions might be good indicators for exiting a position that you might already have on that stock.

As with all investments, you should only make option trades with money that you can truly afford to lose.

Happy trading,

Terry

Weibo Corp (WB) Surges On a Stellar Earnings Report, Can it Continue the Momentum?

Monday, February 26th, 2018

This week we are looking at another of the Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 List companies.  We use this list in one of our options portfolios to spot outperforming stocks and place option spreads that take advantage of the momentum. At Terry’s Tips, we carry out actual portfolios for our subscribers to follow (either on their own or through Auto-Trade at their broker).  One of these portfolios places our Idea of the Week that we publish here.  So far in 2018, this portfolio has gained 69% and over half the portfolio value is now in cash since several of the put credit spreads that we sold earlier expired worthless over the past two weeks. I hope you enjoy these ideas that we pass along.

Terry

Weibo Corp (WB) Surges On a Stellar Earnings Report, Can it Continue the Momentum?

Several analysts have revised up their price targets after Weibo Corporation tripled Q4 earnings earlier this month.  Here are two of them – Weibo Corp (WB) PT Raised to $150 at Barclays and Weibo Corp (WB) PT Raised to $154 at Nomura; Momentum Remains Strong.

WB turned from trendline support earlier this month and was boosted to all-time highs following an impressive fourth-quarter earnings report.  Since breaking notable horizontal resistance at $132.21 the stock is seen consolidating sideways which is a common bullish continuation pattern after a sharp acceleration to the upside.

WB Chart February 2018

WB Chart February 2018

*source Tradingview.com

If you agree there’s further upside ahead for Weibo, consider this trade which is a bet that the stock will continue to advance over the next four weeks, or at least not decline very much.

Buy To Open WB 23Mar18 138 Puts (WB180323P138)
Sell To Open WB 23Mar18 139 Puts (WB180323P139) for a credit of $0.48 (selling a vertical)

This price was $0.02 less than the mid-point of the option spread when WB was trading near $139.  Unless the stock rallies quickly from here, you should be able to get close to this amount.

If you use our favorite broker for this trade, tastyworks, your commission on this trade will only be $1 per opening contract ($2 per spread) (and there is no commission on closing trades, only the $.10 clearing fee).  Each contract would then yield $0.46 and your broker would charge a $100 maintenance fee, making your investment $54 ($100 – $46).  If WB closes at any price above $139.00 on March 23, both options would expire worthless, and your return on the spread would be 85% (1152% annualized).

Changes to Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 This Week:

IBD Underlying Updates February 22, 2018

IBD Underlying Updates February 22, 2018

We have found that the Investor’s Business Daily Top 50 List has been a reliable source of stocks that are likely to move higher in the short run.  Recent additions to the list might be particularly good choices for this strategy, and deletions might be good indicators for exiting a position that you might already have on that stock.

As with all investments, you should only make option trades with money that you can truly afford to lose.

Happy trading,

Terry

Is Floor & Decor (FND) stock offering an entry point?

Monday, February 19th, 2018

This week we are looking at another of the Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 List companies.  We use this list in one of our options portfolios to spot outperforming stocks and place option spreads that take advantage of the momentum. The actual portfolio we conduct at Terry’s Tips using these trades has gained 36% over the first six weeks of 2018 in spite of losing money on one of the spreads.  The average of all our portfolios has gained 23.2% while the market (SPY) is up only 2.2%.

Terry

Is Floor & Decor (FND) stock offering an entry point?

Several analysts expect further upside for FND stock, one analyst has recently revised up price targets to $50 and this article discusses recent favorable coverage in the media.

FND is seen bouncing from a  notable confluence of support near the $43 price point.  The area contains a horizontal level at $42.43 that was previously major resistance that is not seen as support.  Also, the lower line of a rising trend channel is found near the horizontal level.  The combination offers strong downside support and price action so far has shown buyers to protect the area.

FND Chart February 2018

FND Chart February 2018

*source Tradingview.com

If you agree there’s further upside ahead for Floor & Decor, consider this trade which is a bet that the stock will continue to advance over the next four weeks, or at least not decline very much.

Buy To Open FND 16Mar18 40 Puts (FND180316P40)
Sell To Open FND 16Mar18 45 Puts (FND180316P45) for a credit of $1.53 (selling a vertical)

This price was $0.02 less than the mid-point of the option spread when FND was trading near $45.  Unless the stock rallies quickly from here, you should be able to get close to this amount.

If you use our favorite broker for this trade, tastyworks, your commission on this trade will only be $1 per opening contract ($2 per spread) (and there is no commission on closing trades, only the $.10 clearing fee).  Each contract would then yield $1.51 and your broker would charge a $500 maintenance fee, making your investment $349 ($500 – $151).  If FND closes at any price above $45.00 on March 16, both options would expire worthless, and your return on the spread would be 43% (632% annualized).

Changes to Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) Top 50 This Week

IBD Underlying Updates February 15, 2018

IBD Underlying Updates February 15, 2018

We have found that the Investor’s Business Daily Top 50 List has been a reliable source of stocks that are likely to move higher in the short run.

As with all investments, you should only make option trades with money that you can truly afford to lose.

Happy trading,

Terry

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Success Stories

I have been trading the equity markets with many different strategies for over 40 years. Terry Allen's strategies have been the most consistent money makers for me. I used them during the 2008 melt-down, to earn over 50% annualized return, while all my neighbors were crying about their losses.

~ John Collins