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Disadvantages of Option Trading

1.    Taxes.  Except in very rare circumstances, all gains are taxed as short-term capital gains.  This is essentially the same as ordinary income.  The rates are as high as your individual personal income tax rates. Because of this tax situation, we encourage subscribers to carry out option strategies in an IRA or other tax-deferred account, but this is not possible for everyone.  (Maybe you have some capital loss carry-forwards that you can use to offset the short-term capital gains made in your option trading).

2.    Commissions.  Compared to stock investing, commission rates for options, particularly for the Weekly options, are horrendously high.  It is not uncommon for commissions for a year to exceed 30% of the amount you have invested.   Be wary of any newsletter that does not include commissions in their results – they are misleading you big time.

3.    Wide Fluctuations in Portfolio Value.   Options are leveraged instruments.  Portfolio values typically experience wide swings in value in both directions.

The most popular portfolio at Terry’s Tips (they call it the Weekly Mesa) gained over 100% (after commissions) in the last 4 months of 2010.  The underlying stock for the Weekly Mesa is the S&P 500 tracking stock, SPY, one of the most stable of all indexes.  Yet their weekly results included a loss of 31.3% in the last week of November (they have added an insurance tactic to make that kind of loss highly unlikely in the future, by the way).  Three times, their weekly gains were above 20%.

Many people do not have the stomach for such volatility, just as some people are more concerned with the commissions they pay than they are with the bottom line results (both groups of people probably should not be trading options).

4.    Uncertainty of Gains. In carrying out option strategies, most prudent investors depend on risk profile graphs which show the expected gains or losses at the next options expiration at the various possible prices for the underlying.  These graphs are particularly important to check out when placing initial positions, and it is also wise to consult them frequently during the week as well. 

Oftentimes, when the options expire, the expected gains do not materialize.  The reason is usually because option prices (implied volatilities, VIX, - for those of you who are more familiar with how options work) fall.   (The risk profile graph software assumes that implied volatilities will remain unchanged.).   Of course, there are many weeks when VIX rises and you might do better than the risk profile graph had projected.   But the bottom line is that there are times when the stock does exactly as you had hoped  and you still don’t make the gains you originally expected.

With all these negatives, is option investing worth the bother?  We think it is.  Where else is the chance of 100% annual gains a realistic possibility?  We believe that at least a small portion of many people’s investment portfolio should be in something that at least has the possibility of making extraordinary returns.

With CD’s and bonds yielding ridiculously low returns (and the stock market not really showing any gains for the past 4 years), the options alternative has become more attractive for many investors, in spite of all the problems we have outlined above.

Terry's Tips Stock Options Trading Blog

January 11, 2017

An Interesting Short-Term Play on Aetna (AET)

We are always on the lookout for unusual option prices that might indicate a better-than-usual investment opportunity. I would like to share one of those recent opportunities with you, one I personally acted on and passed on to Terry's Tips subscribers last Saturday. It involves the venerable insurance company, Aetna.

Terry

An Interesting Short-Term Play on Aetna (AET)

This week, we are looking at Aetna (AET), a health care benefits company. If you check out its chart, you can see that it does not historically make big moves in either direction, especially down:

January 3, 2017

How to Make 30% on 5 Blue-Chip Companies in 2017 Even if They Fall by 10%

Today, we set up a new portfolio at Terry's Tips that I would like to tell you about. It is our most conservative of 9 portfolios. It consists of selecting 5 blue-chip companies which pay a dividend between 2% and 3.6% and which appear on at least two top analysts’ “top 10” lists for 2017. This portfolio is designed to gain 30% for the year, and we can know in advance exactly what each of the 5 spreads will make in advance. For most of these companies, they can fall by 10% over the course of the year and we will still make our 30% gain.

We are also repeating our best-ever offer to come on board before January 11 rolls around.

Terry

How to Make 30% on 5 Blue-Chip Companies in 2017 Even if They Fall by 10%

The spreads we are talking about are vertical put credit spreads. Once you have found a company you like, you select a strike price which

December 30, 2016

Invest in Yourself in 2017 (at the Lowest Rate Ever)

To celebrate the coming of the New Year I am making the best offer to come on board that I have ever offered. It is time limited. Don’t miss out.

Invest in Yourself in 2017 (at the Lowest Rate Ever)

The presents are unwrapped. The New Year is upon us. Start it out right by doing something really good for yourself, and your loved ones.

The beginning of the year is a traditional time for resolutions and goal-setting. It is a perfect time to do some serious thinking about your financial future.

I believe that the best investment you can ever make is to invest in yourself, no matter what your financial situation might be. Learning a stock option investment strategy is a low-cost way to do just that.

As our New Year’s gift to you, we are offering our service at the lowest price in the history of our company. If you ever considered becoming a Terry’s Tips Insider, this would be the absolutely best time to do it. Read on…

Making 36%

Making 36% – A Duffer's Guide to Breaking Par in the Market Every Year in Good Years and Bad

This book may not improve your golf game, but it might change your financial situation so that you will have more time for the greens and fairways (and sometimes the woods).

Learn why Dr. Allen believes that the 10K Strategy is less risky than owning stocks or mutual funds, and why it is especially appropriate for your IRA.

Order Now

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