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The Terry's Tips Track Record

Track Record for 2021 Through 9/27/21

 

We carried out our 10K Strategy with 4 portfolios in 2021, each trading options on a separate underlying stock. For most of the first half of the year, weekly volatility of our underlying stocks or ETFs was higher than the option prices could support, and we incurred lower-than-usual returns or in some cases, losses until volatility seemed to abate a little in July.  During the year, we dropped one portfolio which did not use our 10K Strategy, but traded an earnings-based strategy that failed to work when stocks moved considerably more than their historical average after announcing.

 

Portfolio Stock Start Current  Change      % 
    Value Value    
Boomers Revenge IWM        10,000       8,448   (1,552) -15.5%
Honey Badger QQQ        10,000     15,757     5,757 57.6%
Rising Tide COST        10,000     10,074          74 0.7%
Wiley Wolf MSFT        10,000     14,155     4,155 41.6%
  Totals          40,000     48,434     8,434 21.1%

Track Record for 2020 

We carried out our 10K Strategy with 5 portfolios in 2020, each trading options on a separate underlying stock.  During the year, we dropped one of the portfolios when the underling became too volatile for the options prices to handle, and we suffered a 50% loss on that portfolio.  

The other 4 10K Strategy portfolios prospered, however, and chalked up an average gain of 122% for all 5 portfolios.  This record meant that in 3 of the past 4 years, our 10K Strategy portfolios have enjoyed average annual gains of over 100%.

At the end of 2020, three portfolios - Wiley Wolf (MSFT), Rising Tide (COST), and Earnings Eagle (TGT) – all more than tripled in value, led by the Wolf’s quadruple (this portfolio started out 2020 with $10,000 and ended up the year with $40,934 (after paying all commissions). We started out 2021 with these same underlying stocks, and added QQQ for the 4th 10K Strategy portfolio. Each portfolio started out with 2021 with $10,000.


Track Record for 2019  

Our results for 2019 were extraordinary.  It was a good year for the market in general.  The S&P 500 (SPY) gained about 29%.  Just about any equity investment probably made money.  However, the average gain for our 10K Strategy portfolios was almost 104%, or well more than 3 times as great as the market as a whole.  Our portfolio based on an algorithm that plays earnings announcements gained over 112% annualized.  This strategy is based on the magnitude of the post-earnings stock price move rather than trying to predict the direction the stock will move after the announcement.

View Results

Our only losing portfolio was our failed experiment with a strategy that bet that stock prices would fall less than expected on the day a dividend was paid.  Most of the time that was the case, but a few huge losses crushed the many winning trades which had lower gains. Fortunately, this portfolio was our smallest one.  We had only committed $3000 to it.  Obviously, we will not be continuing that strategy in 2020.

Looking ahead, we will have 5 10K Strategy portfolios in 2020 (adding a new one called Vista Valley which will trade Visa (V) options). We will also continue Earnings Eagle with a starting value of $10,000.  We will also have a $2000 portfolio which will sell extremely short-term well out-of-the-money vertical credit spreads on SPY.  Each of these spreads are designed to have at least an 85% chance of being successful.

 

Track Record for 2018   

The success of the 10K Strategy is dependent on selecting underlying stocks or ETPs that stay flat or move higher.  The year 2018 was the only year in the past 10 years when the market fell during the calendar year.  This was especially true in the last quarter when prices fell across the board.  Our 10K Strategy portfolios all lost money in 2018, a dramatic difference from 2017 when the composite average portfolio gained over 113%.  Our worst 2018 performer was based on Facebook (FB). FB fell from a high of over $218 to end at $135, a drop of 38%.  Our portfolio lost over 90%, a huge reversal from the 700%+ gain that it had enjoyed in 2017 (see below).  

 

The Terry's Tips 2017 Track Record Final Results 

The year has ended, and it is time to record the results for 2017. The composite average of our 10 portfolios gained 113% for 2017, just about the best year we have enjoyed in our 16 years of publishing Terry’s Tips. Only one portfolio (Honey Badger) lost money (and it covered the entire loss for the year in the first week of 2018).

• Boomer’s Revenge – (restarted with $5000 on 1/22/18 after withdrawal of $2797) – 56% gain for 2017 

• Capstone Cascade – (restarted with $10,000 on 1/2/18 after withdrawal of $4836) – 48% gain for 2017 

• Contango (our only portfolio not available for Auto-Trade – restarted with $5000 on 1/2/18) – 138% gain for 2017 

• Earnings Eagle (started with $5000 on 6/7/17) – 31% gain over last 6 months of 2017 

• Galloping Turtle (restarted with $5000 using new strategy on 11/20/17 after withdrawal of $3960) –   79% gain for 2017 

• Honey Badger (restarted with $5000 using a new strategy on 12/26/17) – 48% loss for 2017 (fully recovered in the first week of 2018)

• Leaping Leopard (restarted on 12/26/17 with $5000 after withdrawal of $2001) – 40% gain for 2017 

• Rising Tide (restarted on 1/2/18 with $5000 after withdrawal of $7615) – 152% gain for 2017 

• Vista Valley (restarted in 2018 after VXX reverse split is carried out with $5000 after withdrawal of $5058) – 101% gain for 2017 

• Wiley Wolf (restarted on 11/8/17 with $5000 after $19,840 withdrawal) – 728% gain for 2017

Each of the above portfolios is carried in a separate brokerage account and include all commissions. We currently carry out 9 portfolios at Terry’s Tips, 8 of which are available for Auto-Trade at thinkorswim (so you can follow a portfolio and never have to make a trade on your own).    All except one of these portfolios can be carried out inside an IRA.   Paying subscribers can follow the results of all 9 portfolios. Some newsletters only reveal their winning portfolios to all subscribers, but at Terry's Tips, we disclose every trade and every position for every portfolio at all times.  

All results include commissions at the standard rate charged by thinkorswim for Terry's Tips subscribers.  Many newsletters conveniently (for them) do not include commissions when they report their trading results.  By the way, our subscription rates are considerably less than just about any other options newsletter.

While we can’t promise that future years will be anywhere near as profitable as 2017 has been for us, we do believe that the basic strategies that we have developed can consistently deliver far greater returns than any conventional investments that we know of.



 

The Long-Term Track Record at Terry's Tips 


 

Terry’s Tips has operated sample option portfolios since 2003 for their subscribers to follow or mirror in their own accounts. These portfolios are actual portfolios, and results include all commissions that an investor would pay at thinkorswim, Inc. by TD Ameritrade. Many option newsletters conveniently (for them) do not include commissions in their performance numbers. This makes their results look a lot better than they actually are because commissions are a significant cost of trading options (unlike stock trading which involves much lower commissions).

 

In most of these years, the option portfolios have beaten the market averages by a very large margin. In some years, the portfolios have incurred losses similar to the magnitude of the market losses.

 

Option trading involves leverage, and leverage works in both directions. Gains (and losses) are often greater than changes in the market. However, we have tried to minimize the losses in down years so that our losses are less than those of the markets in general, and to enjoy greater gains than the markets in good years. Most of the time, we have been successful in carrying out these goals.

Terry's Tips Stock Options Trading Blog

November 22, 2021

On Target Trade


Target
(TGT) reported earnings before the bell on Wednesday that beat estimates on
both revenue and profits. The company also expects its fiscal Q4 comparable
sales growth to be higher than previous forecasts. Moreover, TGT claimed the
supply chain mess has not been an issue - store shelves are full and ready for
the holiday buying onslaught.





Analysts
were mostly bullish on the report, giving TGT several target price increases
(there was one lower price). One went as high as $350, a 38% premium to
Friday’s closing price. The stock price was not rewarded, however. The shares
dropped 4.7% on Wednesday and slid further the rest of the week. However, this
was a common theme among several retailers, including Walmart (WMT). In fact,
the overall retail sector was lower for the week.





The pullback dropped the shares to just above their 50-day moving average (blue line in chart). This trade is thus a bet that TGT will regain its footing and stay above the 50-day as holiday sales numbers – that are predicted to be robust – start rolling in. The short 245 strike (red line) of our put credit spread is below the 50-day, relying on trendline support to hold through expiration.









If
you agree that TGT will stay atop its 50-day moving average line in chart),
consider the following trade that relies on the stock remaining above 245  (through expiration in six weeks.





Buy
to Open TGT 31Dec 240 put (TGT211231P240)

Sell to Open TGT
31Dec 245 put (TGT211231P245) for a credit of $1.60 (selling a vertical)





This
credit is $0.02 less than the mid-point
of the option spread when TGT was trading around $251. Unless the stock rises
quickly from here, you should be able to get close to this amount.





Your
commission on this trade will be only $1.30 per spread.  Each spread would then yield $158.70. This
trade reduces your buying power by $500 and makes your net investment $341.30
($500 – $158.70) for one spread.  If TGT
closes above $245 on December 31, both options will expire worthless and your return on the spread would
be 46% ($158.70/$341.30).


November 15, 2021

An AFRMation Trade


Affirm
Holdings (AFRM) provides a platform for point-of-sale payments for consumers
and merchants. In August, AFRM announced a partnership with Amazon.com (AMZN)
to offer flexible payment solutions to customers with AMZN purchases above $50.
AFRM reported earnings on Wednesday after the bell that missed on profits but
beat on revenue. The company also raised sales guidance.





Wall
Street apparently forgave the earnings miss, largely because it was not clear
if the discrepancy used comparable numbers. Moreover, AFRM said its AMZN
relationship as a buy-now-pay-later service was exclusive. Clearly, analysts
were looking at AFRM’s growth prospects, as the company was greeted with
several target price upgrades that reached as high as $185 (the stock closed at
$149 on Friday).





After a nasty, four-day 21% plunge heading into earnings that pulled the stock to its 50-day moving average, the stock rebounded 13.7% the day after the earnings news. Given the earnings rebound, analyst target upgrades and deal with AMZN, we are going with a bullish trade on AFRM that keys on the stock maintaining its three-month rally and staying atop its 50-day moving average (blue line in chart). The short put strike of our credit spread sits at $133 (red line in chart), just below the 50-day.









If
you agree that AFRM will continue its uptrend and stay atop its 50-day moving
average line in chart), consider the following trade that relies on the stock
remaining above $133  (through expiration
in seven weeks.





Buy
to Open AFRM 31Dec 128 put (AFRM211231P128)

Sell to Open AFRM 31Dec
133 put (AFRM211231P133) for a credit of $1.85 (selling a vertical)





This
credit is $0.05 less than the mid-point
of the option spread when AFRM was trading at $149. Unless the stock rises
quickly from here, you should be able to get close to this amount.





Your
commission on this trade will be only $1.30 per spread.  Each spread would then yield $183.70. This
trade reduces your buying power by $500 and makes your net investment $316.30
($500 – $183.70) for one spread.  If AFRM
closes above $133 on December 31, both options will expire worthless and your return on the spread would
be 58% ($183.70/$316.30).


November 10, 2021

A Me(h)T Trade


MetLife
(MET) won’t get anyone’s juices flowing. It’s frankly a rather boring insurance
and financial services company that’s been around for 158 years. But who cares …
if we can make money on a trade, right?





MET
reported earnings last week that beat estimates on the top and bottom lines.
Hardly anyone noticed. Analysts were silent. There were no stories other than a
dry listing of its key performance numbers. And the stock fell 2% the next day.
Ho hum.





But MET is up 36% for the year, which is well ahead of the S&P 500’s 25%. After a swoon in June and July, the stock has been grinding steadily higher along the dual support of its 50-day and 200-day moving averages. The key is the 50-day (blue line in chart), which has allowed just three daily closes below it during the past three months. This trendline, which is rising slightly, sits at $61.10, which is above the short strike of our put spread trade. Thus, MET would have to pierce this support to hurt this trade. And the 200-day (red line in chart) sits at $61 to provide another layer of support. The last time MET closed below the 200-day was more than a year ago.









If
you agree that MET will continue its slow ascent and stay atop its 50-day
moving average line in chart), consider the following trade that relies on the
stock remaining above $62.50  (through
expiration in six weeks.





Buy
to Open MET 17Dec 60 put (MET211217P60)

Sell to Open MET 17Dec
62.5 put (MET211217P62.5) for a credit of $0.75 (selling a vertical)





This
credit is $0.04 less than the mid-point
of the option spread when MET was trading at $64. Unless the stock rises
quickly from here, you should be able to get close to this amount.





Your
commission on this trade will be only $1.30 per spread.  Each spread would then yield $73.70. This
trade reduces your buying power by $250 and makes your net investment $176.30
($250 – $73.70) for one spread.  If MET
closes above $62.50 on December 17, both options will expire worthless and your return on the spread would
be 42% ($73.70/$176.30).


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.

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