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Saturday, July 26, 2014

Weekend Portfolio Analysis (July 26, 2014)

A quiet week, free of drama with SPX going from 1976.93 to 1978.34. Just a +0.07% move. With 8 weeks to September expiration I opened a 1815/1820/2065/2070 Iron Condor. Just being mechanical, as usual, 8 weeks to expiration, no man's land, there goes my Iron Condor. Using the 10% probability of being in the money strikes and in this case, they are comfortably outside the boundaries of the uptrend channel. So, all is good.

September 2014 SPX Iron Condor

On Thursday I opened an SPX Iron Condor:

For the model portfolio that is 4 contracts per leg.
Max Risk: 4.15 ($1660)
Max profit: 0.85 ($340)
Days to expiration: 57

I didn't write and article on Thursday as I couldn't find the time to do so. But I'm doing it now to keep a reference to the trade entry in a single article and not mixed up with the Weekend Portfolio Analysis that I'll write up after this.

Here's a chart of the SPX Index as of July 25 market close
(Click on image to enlarge)

With this trade these are the current positions in the model portfolio:
August RUT 1050/1060/1260/1270 Iron Condor $292 credit
September RUT 980/990 Bull Put Spread $120 credit 
September SPX 1815/1820/2065/2070 Iron Condor $340 credit

Everything's looking good right now and no position is under threat for the time being.

Check out 2014 Track Record

Go to the bottom of this page in order to see the Legal Stuff

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Weekend Portfolio Analysis (July 19, 2014)

The July 2014 monthly options expiration cycle is now in the books. And yesterday the following two July positions expired yielding max profit:
SPX 1735/1740/2010/2015 Iron Condor
SPX 1805/1810 Put spread

I have to say July was not a great month for me in terms of portfolio growth, but I think it was a victory in other aspects. I started with the wrong foot from the get go with a 1735/1740/1975/1980 Iron Condor whose Call side had to be adjusted. This adjustment caused a temporary loss and made it tough to pull off a spectacular month. However, in spite of that initial loss, I managed to end up in positive territory. I also played my first Double Calendar successfully after studying these type of positions for about a year.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

September 2014, RUT Credit Put spread

Today I sold the RUT 980/990 Credit Put spread using September 2014 options for a credit of 0.60 ($120 in 2 contracts for the model portfolio).
63 days to expiration.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Weekend Portfolio Analysis (July 12, 2014)

The S&P500 went from 1984.22 down to 1967.57 this week, for a 0.8% loss. There was a little spike in volatility and I managed to close the Jul/Aug Double Calendar spread for a small profit. Other than that I didn't add new positions during the week.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Closed July 2014 SPY Put Calendar spread

On May 29 (40 days ago) I bought an SPY 191 July/August Put Calendar spread. You can see the trade here. The idea back then was to simply make a bet that volatility (VIX) was too low and it should go up at some point in the next fifty something days. Also the market was entering overbought territory and I felt that was a good, and conservative bet. If the market kept going up, I would add another Calendar spread at higher strike prices to expand my profitability zone.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Weekend Portfolio Analysis (June 29, 2014)

The SPX index barely moved this week, from a starting point of 1962.92 on Monday to a close of  1960.96 on Friday. This is really boring,.......but boring is good. The less you have to move your pieces the better, because it means time decay is working in your favor on your existing positions and it also means you're being less ripped off on commissions. Let's move over to the market conditions segment.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Weekend Portfolio Analysis (June 21, 2014)

Well, June monthly expiration is in the past. Just to recap, I made two trades with June monthly options. I had a 920/930 RUT Put spread which was very easy to ride from the beginning and never got under pressure, and I also played a 1710/1715/1965/1970 Iron Condor whose Call side I had to close for a scratch to mitigate risk in a boring yet unstoppable bull market. Overall it wasn't a spectacular month in terms of portfolio growth, but a good one. Let's say a nice one. +2.18% overall portfolio growth after commissions and now I'm up +8.82% year to date. Half the year is gone, so if I am able to duplicate these results in the second half of the year, I will end up over +17% for the year. There's nothing spectacular about that. But there's no reason to be disappointed (I know I'm not). This has been a very low volatility environment much like 2013 which is the kind of environment that makes the lives of Options Sellers miserable. You can get better returns, yeah, sure you can, possibly +30%, but inevitably taking so much more risk that I'm unwilling to take! So, 12% last year,.....potentially 17% this year being rather conservative,.....that's pretty good. I'm pretty happy if these are the worst times! Better years will come for options sellers. And I'm gonna be there :) you bet I will. In the mean time, as the market goes up and insists in being boring, I'm reaping the benefits of my long term dividend growth oriented investments in stocks. There's always a reason to be happy and positive my friends.

Friday, June 20, 2014

August 2014 RUT Iron Condor

With 8 weeks to August expiration I entered this:

Buy 2 RUT August 1050 Put @4.40
Sell 2 RUT August 1060 Put @5.00
Sell 2 RUT August 1260 Call @2.75
Buy 2 RUT August 1270 Call @1.85