FT Press :: Michael C. Thomsetthttp://www.ftpress.com/authors/authorblog_rss.aspx?a=823c7d12-179b-417e-bc1b-901c72b7504cThe latest blogs from Michael C. Thomsett on FT Pressen-usBlog :: How to Improve Your Odds with Put Ratio Backspreads http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/How-to-Improve-Your-Odds-With-Put-Ratio-Backspreads-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=How-to-Improve-Your-Odds-With-Put-Ratio-Backspreads-&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Traders tend to view the put ratio backspread as a bear strategy, because it employs puts. However, it is actually a <em>volatility</em> strategy.</p>Tue, 18 Dec 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/How-to-Improve-Your-Odds-With-Put-Ratio-Backspreads-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=How-to-Improve-Your-Odds-With-Put-Ratio-Backspreads-&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options: A Holiday Poemhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-A-holiday-poem&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-A-holiday-poem&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The month is slipping away quickly, so I thought I should hurry up and post my annual holiday options poem. Here it is ...<br /> </p>Wed, 12 Dec 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-A-holiday-poem&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-A-holiday-poem&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading - the B-S Pricing Modelhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading--the-B-S-pricing-model&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading--the-B-S-pricing-model&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The big question, of course, is: How can we rely on a formula with a series of variables that are provably inaccurate and based on a flawed assumptions, exponentially inaccurate variables, and outdated models about the nature of options?</p>Fri, 07 Dec 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading--the-B-S-pricing-model&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading--the-B-S-pricing-model&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: William Shakespeare: A Sonnet about Options?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/William-Shakespeare-a-sonnet-about-options&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=William-Shakespeare-a-sonnet-about-options&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Did William Shakespeare trade options? -- from ThomsettOptions.com<br /> </p>Fri, 02 Nov 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/William-Shakespeare-a-sonnet-about-options&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=William-Shakespeare-a-sonnet-about-options&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Technical analysis - mastering the basicshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Technical-analysis--mastering-the-basics&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Technical-analysis--mastering-the-basics&WT.rss_ev=a<p>How do we time trades? Entry and exit may be wise based on circumstances, but <em>timing</em> is the key to making smart moves well-timed moves as well.</p>Tue, 23 Oct 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Technical-analysis--mastering-the-basics&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Technical-analysis--mastering-the-basics&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: What Are Your Options?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/What-are-your-options&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=What-are-your-options&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Investors need net returns that match or beat the double effect of inflation and taxes. But they don&rsquo;t want to have to take on higher risks. This is a dilemma, but there are solutions.</p>Mon, 17 Sep 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/What-are-your-options&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=What-are-your-options&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The Most Common Riskhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-most-common-risk&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-most-common-risk&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Traders hear about all kinds of risk, but one specific type is common to traders at all levels, but rarely if ever discussed. </p>Tue, 28 Aug 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-most-common-risk&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-most-common-risk&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Business Books: Options Education Never Stopshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Business-books-Options-education-never-stops&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Business-books-Options-education-never-stops&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Every options trader needs to commit to unending education, not only because the market changes constantly, but also because we traders all change and grow&nbsp;as well.</p>Wed, 01 Aug 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Business-books-Options-education-never-stops&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Business-books-Options-education-never-stops&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Options By the Great Poets?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-options-by-the-great-poets&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-options-by-the-great-poets&WT.rss_ev=a<p>It may be true that listed options are a somewhat modern oddity. But some quick research has turned up interesting commentary on options trading and, specifically, concerning risks and going short. So William Shakespeare, Edgar Allen Poe and even Ogden Nash added their voices to the unending debate about options trading &hellip;</p>Wed, 25 Jul 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-options-by-the-great-poets&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-options-by-the-great-poets&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Mastering the Basics is Never All That Easyhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Mastering-the-basics-is-never-all-that-easy&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Mastering-the-basics-is-never-all-that-easy&WT.rss_ev=a<p>No matter how many years you trade options, you have to continuously re-focus yourself, remember your rules of trading, risk standards, and much more.</p>Mon, 16 Jul 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Mastering-the-basics-is-never-all-that-easy&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Mastering-the-basics-is-never-all-that-easy&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading: The Dividend Collar, An Examplehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-dividend-collar-an-example&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-dividend-collar-an-example&WT.rss_ev=a<p>I have been blogging extensively about the risk-free, double-digit returns possible with the dividend collar. Most traders are curious and positive about this, but a few have claimed it will not work. Here is an example of a recent trade on which the dividend collar would have worked profitably - double-digit annualized returns and elimination of market risk. </p>Thu, 05 Jul 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-dividend-collar-an-example&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-dividend-collar-an-example&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading: Risk-free and double digits - is it possible?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Risk-free-and-double-digits--is-it-possible&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Risk-free-and-double-digits--is-it-possible&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Options traders hear a lot of wild promises about the riches you get trading options, but most of these schemes turn out to be a lot of hype and exaggeration. But here is an idea that actually does work.</p>Fri, 29 Jun 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Risk-free-and-double-digits--is-it-possible&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Risk-free-and-double-digits--is-it-possible&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options: Comparison of Risks in Synthetic Stockhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Comparison-of-risks-in-synthetic-stock&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Comparison-of-risks-in-synthetic-stock&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The use of offsetting option positions creates &quot;synthetic stock&quot; - the no-cost or low-cost option combination behaves just like stock. The risks in the position, by the way, are the same as those risks in 100 shares, but for much less cash outlay.</p>Thu, 28 Jun 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Comparison-of-risks-in-synthetic-stock&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Comparison-of-risks-in-synthetic-stock&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading: Confusion about the Meaning of Volatilityhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Confusion-about-the-meaning-of-volatility&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Confusion-about-the-meaning-of-volatility&WT.rss_ev=a<p>So many traders are confused when they hear about &quot;volatility.&quot; Why? Because there are so many different meanings of the word, five to be precise. Understanding the differences helps to manage options trading.</p>Wed, 27 Jun 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Confusion-about-the-meaning-of-volatility&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Confusion-about-the-meaning-of-volatility&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Dangers of Rolling Covered Callshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Dangers-of-rolling-covered-calls&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Dangers-of-rolling-covered-calls&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Most covered call writers know how to roll a covered call to avoid or defer exercise. But this can create unintended losses or even have serious tax consequences.</p>Fri, 22 Jun 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Dangers-of-rolling-covered-calls&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Dangers-of-rolling-covered-calls&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Is Diversification Necessary?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Is-diversification-necessary&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Is-diversification-necessary&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Traditional wisdom tells us that diversification is a foundation of wise portfolio management. Is this still true? Or are there ways around it? Can you put all your eggs in one basket without any risk of loss?</p>Thu, 21 Jun 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Is-diversification-necessary&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Is-diversification-necessary&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: A Style Guidehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-A-style-guide&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-A-style-guide&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The world of options involves a complex jargon, listings, and nomenclature. Following is a suggested style guide for consistency is how options information should be expressed.</p>Thu, 21 Jun 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-A-style-guide&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-A-style-guide&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading ? Another Look at Risk http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Another-look-at-risk-1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Another-look-at-risk-1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Options traders need to constantly revisit the issue of risk. No one can escape the various kinds of market risk, and options are exceptionally associated with this reality. Even though many strategies are very conservative, every trader needs to know the risk levels involved in a strategy -- before they commit cash.</p>Wed, 20 Jun 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Another-look-at-risk-1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Another-look-at-risk-1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options: Credit Puts in a Swing Trading Programhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Credit-puts-in-a-swing-trading-program&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Credit-puts-in-a-swing-trading-program&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Swing traders normally use shares of stock; but do they short sell to play a bearish trend? or do they hold and wait for the next bullish move? If they do, they're missing half of the swings. Options make more sense, anjd short optinos could make the most sense of all.</p>Fri, 15 Jun 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Credit-puts-in-a-swing-trading-program&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Credit-puts-in-a-swing-trading-program&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Why Buy Insurance Puts?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-why-buy-insurance-puts&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-why-buy-insurance-puts&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The insurance put protects your appreciated stock by limiting losses in the event of a price adjustment. But it only works under specific circumstances.</p>Wed, 13 Jun 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-why-buy-insurance-puts&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-why-buy-insurance-puts&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Are Uncovered Positions Always High Risk?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Are-uncovered-positions-always-high-risk&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Are-uncovered-positions-always-high-risk&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Options traders have been cautioned from the beginning that uncovered options are always high-risk. But this belief should be challenged. It's not the nature of a strategy, but when it is opened or closed that determines risk.</p>Tue, 12 Jun 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Are-uncovered-positions-always-high-risk&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Are-uncovered-positions-always-high-risk&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading - Confusion About Time Valuehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading--confusion-about-time-value&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading--confusion-about-time-value&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Are there two types of option premium? or three? Many define only intrinsic and time value, but the truly important portion of premium is neither of these.</p>Tue, 12 Jun 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading--confusion-about-time-value&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading--confusion-about-time-value&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading: What Exactly Is a Synthetic Derivative?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-What-exactly-is-a-synthetic-derivative&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-What-exactly-is-a-synthetic-derivative&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Everyone heard about the problems at JPMorganChase - losing $2 billion or more writing &quot;synthetic derivatives&quot; - but what exactly does that mean?</p>Thu, 24 May 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-What-exactly-is-a-synthetic-derivative&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-What-exactly-is-a-synthetic-derivative&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Strategies: The Oddly Named "Iron Butterfly"http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-strategies-The-oddly-named-iron-butterfly&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-strategies-The-oddly-named-iron-butterfly&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The curiously-named &quot;iron butterfly&quot; is a complex strategy offering limited losses and limited profits.</p> <p>It is an expanded version of the basic butterfly (two separate spreads offsetting one another). The &quot;iron&quot; version is a combined straddle consisting of four options instead of the butterfly's three.</p>Tue, 01 May 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-strategies-The-oddly-named-iron-butterfly&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-strategies-The-oddly-named-iron-butterfly&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Bookshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-books2&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-books2&WT.rss_ev=a<p>I invite everyone to check out my options books ... these are written to&nbsp;provide useful education and strategic information on&nbsp; a range of strategies.</p>Tue, 01 May 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-books2&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-books2&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options -- Covered Call Total Returnhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options--covered-call-total-return&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options--covered-call-total-return&WT.rss_ev=a<p>How do you calculate returns from writing covered calls? At first glance, this seems like an easy question; return is return, right? But in fact, calculating return can be done in several different ways.</p>Wed, 25 Apr 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options--covered-call-total-return&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options--covered-call-total-return&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Complex Strategies Are Not Always Better Strategieshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Complex-Strategies-Are-Not-Always-Better-Strategies&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Complex-Strategies-Are-Not-Always-Better-Strategies&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Even the most experienced option trader can benefit with an occasional reminder: The most basic strategies often are the best, all depending on the situation and what you hope to accomplish with the option position.</p>Mon, 23 Apr 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Complex-Strategies-Are-Not-Always-Better-Strategies&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Complex-Strategies-Are-Not-Always-Better-Strategies&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Option Speculations -- The New Bad Guys?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Option-speculations--the-new-bad-guys&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Option-speculations--the-new-bad-guys&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The president has identified &quot;speculation&quot; as the cause for high oil prices. But as an economic observation (and not a political one) I challenge anyone to explain how that works.</p>Thu, 19 Apr 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Option-speculations--the-new-bad-guys&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Option-speculations--the-new-bad-guys&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The Question of Suitabilityhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-question-of-suitability&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-question-of-suitability&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Anyone interested in trading options has to be qualified by their broker to trade. This demands a separate options agreement in which you have to state your experience and knowledge.</p>Wed, 18 Apr 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-question-of-suitability&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-question-of-suitability&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options: The Call Bear Spread - Worthwhile or Not?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-The-Call-Bear-Spread--Worthwhile-Or-Not&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-The-Call-Bear-Spread--Worthwhile-Or-Not&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The call bear spread is a two-part strategy best used when you believe the underlying price will decline. It consists of a long call plus a lower-strike short call.</p>Mon, 16 Apr 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-The-Call-Bear-Spread--Worthwhile-Or-Not&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-The-Call-Bear-Spread--Worthwhile-Or-Not&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Know Your Tax Riskshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Know-your-tax-risks1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Know-your-tax-risks1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Options are odd devices in many ways; but one potential risk many traders are completely unaware of is the tax risk involved. Taxation for options is complicated and illogical in many respects. Know where you stand before closing out positions to avoid having an unpleasant tax surprise.</p>Wed, 04 Apr 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Know-your-tax-risks1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Know-your-tax-risks1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading - Ultimate Leverage with Syntheticshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Ultimate-Leverage-with-Synthetics&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Ultimate-Leverage-with-Synthetics&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The two major synthetics -- long stock and short stock -- involve options but mirror price movement in 100 shares of stock. These may reduce market risks while setting up positions with zero cost - the best leverage of all.</p>Mon, 26 Mar 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Ultimate-Leverage-with-Synthetics&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Ultimate-Leverage-with-Synthetics&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: 4 Ways to Create Conservative Options Tradinghttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/4-Ways-to-create-conservative-options-trading&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=4-Ways-to-create-conservative-options-trading&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Options traders are always hungry for new, valuable sources for information. If you are a conservative investor who wants to learn how to create appropriate trades within your risk profile, and how to use options as a portfolio management tool, here are four suggestions for you:</p>Thu, 22 Mar 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/4-Ways-to-create-conservative-options-trading&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=4-Ways-to-create-conservative-options-trading&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Timing Short-Term Tradeshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-timing-short-term-trades1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-timing-short-term-trades1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Market risk exists whether you own shares of stock or use options to anticipate market-wide movement. In that sense, options are not higher-risk than stocks. In fact, because one option lets you control 100 shares of stock, they are far less risky. If you can benefit from stock price movement for about 5% of the cost of those shares, your risks are lower.</p>Thu, 22 Mar 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-timing-short-term-trades1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-timing-short-term-trades1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: 5 Powerful Ways to Swing Trade with Optionshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/5-Powerful-Ways-to-Swing-Trade-with-Options&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=5-Powerful-Ways-to-Swing-Trade-with-Options&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Most &ldquo;swing traders&rdquo; -- those moving in and out of positions in two- to five-day short-term price swings -- use shares of stock for their strategy. But options can vastly expand your swing trading program with less risk and greater leverage. Here are five ways this can work for you.</p>Tue, 20 Mar 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/5-Powerful-Ways-to-Swing-Trade-with-Options&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=5-Powerful-Ways-to-Swing-Trade-with-Options&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: 4 Ways to Turn High-Risk Naked Options Strategies into Low-Risk Oneshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/4-Ways-to-Turn-High-Risk-Naked-Options-Strategies-into-Low-Risk-Ones&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=4-Ways-to-Turn-High-Risk-Naked-Options-Strategies-into-Low-Risk-Ones&WT.rss_ev=a<p>We have always viewed specific option strategies in terms of risk. Naked contracts, for example, are high-risk. Even basic long options are high-risk because most of them expire, right? Not always. Here is a new and expanded way to look at risk, even for those strategies widely believed to always be high-risk.</p>Fri, 16 Mar 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/4-Ways-to-Turn-High-Risk-Naked-Options-Strategies-into-Low-Risk-Ones&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=4-Ways-to-Turn-High-Risk-Naked-Options-Strategies-into-Low-Risk-Ones&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The Tasuki Gaphttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-tasuki-gap1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-tasuki-gap1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>In Japanese, a &ldquo;tasuki&rdquo; is a sash used to hold up a shirt sleeve, a type of garter. In a tasuki gap, a parallel is found in the three sessions, in which a directional gap is upheld in the third and crucial session. The gap is not filled, so that the direction of movement is strongly supported.</p>Thu, 15 Mar 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-tasuki-gap1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-tasuki-gap1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: The Expanded Role of Options in the New, Modern Markethttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/The-expanded-role-of-options-in-the-new-modern-market&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=The-expanded-role-of-options-in-the-new-modern-market&WT.rss_ev=a<p>In the 1940s the average holding period for stocks was as high as 10 years. This is unheard of today. Now the average is down below one year and many active traders (day traders, swing traders) are looking at being in open positions for a matter of days, not even weeks or months.</p>Thu, 15 Mar 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/The-expanded-role-of-options-in-the-new-modern-market&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=The-expanded-role-of-options-in-the-new-modern-market&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: 3 Ways to Take a New Look at the Uncovered Call - Is It Really High-Risk?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/3-ways-to-take-a-new-look-at-the-uncovered-call--is-it-really-high-risk&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=3-ways-to-take-a-new-look-at-the-uncovered-call--is-it-really-high-risk&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The traditional view of naked call writing is that this is one of the highest-risk strategies possible. But is this necessarily true? Can naked call writing be safer than most of us think? There are ways of looking at risk that challenge traditional thought and even present a scenario for low-risk naked call writing.</p>Wed, 14 Mar 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/3-ways-to-take-a-new-look-at-the-uncovered-call--is-it-really-high-risk&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=3-ways-to-take-a-new-look-at-the-uncovered-call--is-it-really-high-risk&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Are You Really Conservative? -- 5 Reasons You Might Not Behttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Are-you-really-conservative--5-reasons-you-might-not-be&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Are-you-really-conservative--5-reasons-you-might-not-be&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Many traders define themselves as conservative. But is this accurate? or does your trading style contradict the standards of &quot;conservative&quot; trading? Here are 5 ways to test how conservative you are in your trading and investing.</p>Mon, 12 Mar 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Are-you-really-conservative--5-reasons-you-might-not-be&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Are-you-really-conservative--5-reasons-you-might-not-be&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Do We Really Understand What "Low-Risk" Means?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Do-we-really-understand-what-low-risk-means&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Do-we-really-understand-what-low-risk-means&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Do we really understand investment risk and what it means? I have been trading for 35 years but I find myself re-thinking this question in profound ways.<br /> </p>Fri, 09 Mar 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Do-we-really-understand-what-low-risk-means&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Do-we-really-understand-what-low-risk-means&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Patterns: Side-by-Side Lineshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-patterns-side-by-side-lines1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-patterns-side-by-side-lines1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>One of the more obscure candlestick patterns is the side-by-side lines. This comes in four types: white bull, white bear, black bull and black bear. The similarity in appearance and meaning is confusing, so that the side-by-side lines formation is easily overlooked. However, it can provide important reversal signals and, along with other candlestick formations, can be a valuable weapon in every chartist&rsquo;s skill set.</p>Thu, 08 Mar 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-patterns-side-by-side-lines1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-patterns-side-by-side-lines1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Patterns: The Abandoned Babyhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-patterns-the-abandoned-baby1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-patterns-the-abandoned-baby1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>This descriptively named formation involves three sessions. The first two days form a doji star -- two sessions with a gap in between -- and the third is a session moving in the opposite direction after a gap.</p>Thu, 01 Mar 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-patterns-the-abandoned-baby1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-patterns-the-abandoned-baby1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Patterns: Inside and Outside Formationshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-patterns-Inside-and-Outside-formations1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-patterns-Inside-and-Outside-formations1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Among the complex patterns you see in candlesticks -- involving three sessions -- two of the more subtle are the inside and outside formations. These consist of two parts: inside patterns begin with a two-session harami and a third decisive day; outside patterns start with a two-session engulfing formation and then a third, decisive day.</p>Thu, 23 Feb 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-patterns-Inside-and-Outside-formations1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-patterns-Inside-and-Outside-formations1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The 7 Kinds of Straddles Every Trader Needs to Knowhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-7-kinds-of-straddles-every-trader-needs-to-know1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-7-kinds-of-straddles-every-trader-needs-to-know1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The <i>straddle</i> is an options strategy that in its most basic form involves opening options on the same strike. However, there are many variations to this strategy and some straddles resemble spreads as hybrids. It helps to clarify the strategy by defining the 7 basic straddles every trader needs to know -- not only in terms of how they are constructed, but also for risk levels.</p>Thu, 16 Feb 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-7-kinds-of-straddles-every-trader-needs-to-know1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-7-kinds-of-straddles-every-trader-needs-to-know1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Five Advantages in Using Synthetic Positions for Swing Tradinghttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Five-advantages-in-using-synthetic-positions-for-swing-trading&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Five-advantages-in-using-synthetic-positions-for-swing-trading&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Synthetic stock -- created with options -- vastly reduces swing trading risk. It makes more sense to create synthetics than either of the two alternatives (buying/selling stock or swing trading with options alone). </p> <p>The strategy involves buying one call and selling one put at the same strike (this creates a synthetic <i>long</i> stock position. The combined option values will mirror price movement in the underlying stock. However, because the position includes both a long and a short, the cost is very small. This synthetic position works best at the bottom of the swing, when you expect the price of stock to begin rising. </p> <p />Thu, 09 Feb 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Five-advantages-in-using-synthetic-positions-for-swing-trading&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Five-advantages-in-using-synthetic-positions-for-swing-trading&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The Synthetic Short Salehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-Synthetic-short-sale1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-Synthetic-short-sale1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Shorting stock is a high-risk strategy that most traders avoid. It requires borrowing stock from your brokerage firm, selling it, and hoping the price falls. You have to maintain margin and pay interest on the borrowed stock; and if the stock price rises, margin requirements grow and you could end up losing. You can duplicate the potential profits without all of that risk, by creating a synthetic short sale with options.</p>Thu, 02 Feb 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-Synthetic-short-sale1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-Synthetic-short-sale1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading: Three Options-based Tax Planning Ideas for Carryover Losseshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Three-options-based-tax-planning-ideas-for-carryover-losses2&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Three-options-based-tax-planning-ideas-for-carryover-losses2&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Many investors and traders find themselves with huge carryover capital losses. Under current rules, you can deduct only $3,000 maximum per year, meaning that the excess could last for many years into the future. However, this situation presents opportunities involving options. Three goods ideas are among these opportunities.<br /> </p>Thu, 26 Jan 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Three-options-based-tax-planning-ideas-for-carryover-losses2&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Three-options-based-tax-planning-ideas-for-carryover-losses2&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading: The Protected Covered Call Ratiohttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-protected-covered-call-ratio2&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-protected-covered-call-ratio2&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>The&nbsp;ratio write consists of writing a combination of covered and uncovered calls. The uncovered portion is at risk, but the strategy is not as high-risk as just writing uncovered calls. The combination of time decay and implied volatility makes a well-timed ratio write a safe strategy, assuming all of the right elements are in place. For those seeking more protection than what is provided by time decay, you can protected the uncovered portion with a higher-strike long call.</p> <p />Thu, 19 Jan 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-protected-covered-call-ratio2&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-protected-covered-call-ratio2&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Four Techniques to Reduce Risk in Covered Call Ratio Writinghttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Four-Techniques-to-Reduce-Risk-in-Covered-Call-Ratio-Writing1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Four-Techniques-to-Reduce-Risk-in-Covered-Call-Ratio-Writing1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The &ldquo;ratio write&rdquo; is a variation of the well-known covered call. It increases market risk but, properly put together, those risks are manageable for moderate investors and in some formations, even for conservatives. If you like the covered call, you might also like the ratio write.</p>Thu, 12 Jan 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Four-Techniques-to-Reduce-Risk-in-Covered-Call-Ratio-Writing1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Four-Techniques-to-Reduce-Risk-in-Covered-Call-Ratio-Writing1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlesticks: Inside or Outside http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlesticks-Inside-or-Outside-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlesticks-Inside-or-Outside-&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Among the complex patterns you see in candlesticks -- involving three sessions -- two of the more subtle are the inside and outside formations. These consist of two parts: inside patterns begin with a two-session harami and a third decisive day; outside patterns start with a two-session engulfing formation and then a third, decisive day.</p>Thu, 05 Jan 2012 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlesticks-Inside-or-Outside-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlesticks-Inside-or-Outside-&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: 7 Straddles Every Trader Needshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-7-straddles-every-trader-needs&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-7-straddles-every-trader-needs&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The <i>straddle</i> is an options strategy that in its most basic form involves opening options on the same strike. However, there are many variations to this strategy and some straddles resemble spreads as hybrids. It helps to clarify the strategy by defining the 7 basic straddles every trader needs to know -- not only in terms of how they are constructed, but also for risk levels.</p>Thu, 29 Dec 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-7-straddles-every-trader-needs&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-7-straddles-every-trader-needs&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: A Christmas Visithttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-A-Christmas-Visit&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-A-Christmas-Visit&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Is there a Santa Claus in the optinos market?</p>Thu, 22 Dec 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-A-Christmas-Visit&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-A-Christmas-Visit&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Five Reasons to Use Synthetic Positions for Swing Tradinghttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Five-reasons-to-use-synthetic-positions-for-swing-trading1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Five-reasons-to-use-synthetic-positions-for-swing-trading1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Synthetic stock -- created with options -- vastly reduces swing trading risk. It makes more sense to create synthetics than either of the two alternatives (buying/selling stock or swing trading with options alone).</p>Thu, 15 Dec 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Five-reasons-to-use-synthetic-positions-for-swing-trading1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Five-reasons-to-use-synthetic-positions-for-swing-trading1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Synthetic Short Saleshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Synthetic-short-sales&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Synthetic-short-sales&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Shorting stock is a high-risk strategy worth avoiding for most traders. It requires borrowing stock from your brokerage firm, selling it, and hoping the price falls. You have to maintain margin and pay interest on the borrowed stock; and if the stock price rises, margin requirements grow and you could end up losing. You can duplicate the potential profits without all of that risk, by creating a synthetic short sale with options.</p>Thu, 08 Dec 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Synthetic-short-sales&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Synthetic-short-sales&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Three Options-based Tax Planning Ideas for Carryover Losseshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Three-options-based-tax-planning-ideas-for-carryover-losses1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Three-options-based-tax-planning-ideas-for-carryover-losses1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>After the disastrous markets of the last two years, many investors and traders find themselves with huge carryover capital losses. Under current rules, you can deduct only $3,000 maximum per year, meaning that the excess could last for many years into the future. However, this situation presents opportunities involving options. Three goods ideas are among these opportunities.<br /> </p>Wed, 30 Nov 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Three-options-based-tax-planning-ideas-for-carryover-losses1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Three-options-based-tax-planning-ideas-for-carryover-losses1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading: The Protected Covered Call Ratiohttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-protected-covered-call-ratio1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-protected-covered-call-ratio1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The ratio write consists of writing a combination of covered and uncovered calls. The uncovered portion is at risk, but the strategy is not as high-risk as just writing uncovered calls. The combination of time decay and implied volatility makes a well-timed ratio write a safe strategy, assuming all of the right elements are in place. For those seeking more protection than what is provided by time decay, you can protected the uncovered portion with a higher-strike long call.</p>Wed, 23 Nov 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-protected-covered-call-ratio1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-protected-covered-call-ratio1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading: Four Ways to Reduce Covered Call Ratio Riskshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Four-Ways-to-Reduce-Covered-Call-Ratio-Risks&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Four-Ways-to-Reduce-Covered-Call-Ratio-Risks&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The ratio write is a variation of the covered call. It increases market risk but, properly structured, those risks are manageable for moderate investors and in some formations, even for conservatives. If you like the covered call, you will probably also like the ratio write.</p>Thu, 17 Nov 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Four-Ways-to-Reduce-Covered-Call-Ratio-Risks&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Four-Ways-to-Reduce-Covered-Call-Ratio-Risks&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - thrusting lines and separating lineshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--thrusting-lines-and-separating-lines1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--thrusting-lines-and-separating-lines1&WT.rss_ev=a<i><p>Candlestick formations often are described with aggressive imagery. For example, the thrusting lines and separating lines are two kinds of double-session candlestick formations that foreshadow trend reversal. The thrusting lines is especially strong because it consists of two long candlesticks with a flip in the direction. The separating lines formation has a significant but invisible gap, making it equally strong as a sign of coming price reversal. </p> </i>Thu, 10 Nov 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--thrusting-lines-and-separating-lines1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--thrusting-lines-and-separating-lines1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - meeting and piercing lineshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--meeting-and-piercing-lines&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--meeting-and-piercing-lines&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Many candlestick formations have graphic and descriptive names. This helps to keep the dozens of candlestick indicators clear in your mind. Among these are several two-session patterns including the meeting lines and piercing lines patterns. These serve as great confirmation signals at the end of a trend, signaling potential reversal. For day traders and swing traders, these kinds of subtle for informative signals are quite valuable.</p>Thu, 03 Nov 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--meeting-and-piercing-lines&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--meeting-and-piercing-lines&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Webinar: Managing Risks in Trading Optionshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Webinar-Managing-risks-in-trading-options&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Webinar-Managing-risks-in-trading-options&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Can you manage risks while trading options?</p>Wed, 02 Nov 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Webinar-Managing-risks-in-trading-options&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Webinar-Managing-risks-in-trading-options&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlesticks - Harami and Harami Cross http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlesticks--harami-and-harami-cross-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlesticks--harami-and-harami-cross-&WT.rss_ev=a<p>&ldquo;Harami&rdquo; means &ldquo;pregnant&rdquo; in Japanese, an accurate description of the appearance of this two-session candlestick signal. This pattern is the opposite of the engulfing pattern, in which a small session is surpassed, or engulfed, by the one that follows. In the harami, a long session is followed by a much smaller session of opposite color. This is the pregnant part, the protrusion that signals a reversal. </p>Thu, 27 Oct 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlesticks--harami-and-harami-cross-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlesticks--harami-and-harami-cross-&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - the engulfing patternhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-engulfing-pattern1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-engulfing-pattern1&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>A highly reliable two-session candlestick indicator is called the <i>engulfing pattern</i> -- the second session is longer on both sides, &ldquo;engulfing&rdquo; its opposite-colored predecessor. Two attributes are needed to make it a true engulfing pattern. First, the real body of the second session is extended higher <i>and </i>lower than the previous day and has the opposite color. Second, both upper and lower shadows should also be longer both above and below the previous day.</p>Thu, 20 Oct 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-engulfing-pattern1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-engulfing-pattern1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - Single-Stick Reversal Signshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--single-stick-reversal-signs&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--single-stick-reversal-signs&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Three candlestick signals consist of single sessions, but unlike most candlesticks, the color of the real body does not matter. What does matter is where these indicators are found within the current trend. So the three -- the spinning top, hanging man, and hammer --- are valuable reversal flags, expansions on what day traders and swing traders like to call &ldquo;narrow range days.&rdquo;</p>Thu, 13 Oct 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--single-stick-reversal-signs&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--single-stick-reversal-signs&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - single-stick reversal signshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--single-stick-reversal-signs1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--single-stick-reversal-signs1&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>Three candlestick signals consist of single sessions, but unlike most candlesticks, the color of the real body does not matter. What does matter is where these indicators are found within the current trend. So the three -- the spinning top, hanging man, and hammer --- are valuable reversal flags, expansions on what day traders and swing traders like to call &ldquo;narrow range days.&rdquo;</p>Thu, 13 Oct 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--single-stick-reversal-signs1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--single-stick-reversal-signs1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - the doji candlestickhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-doji-candlestick&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-doji-candlestick&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The Japanese word doji means mistake. Can a mistake point to a strong charting signal? The doji candlestick occurs often and is a very valuable signal. Even though it contains only a single session, it is a meaningful red flag.</p>Thu, 06 Oct 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-doji-candlestick&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-doji-candlestick&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - the Marubozu indicatorhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-Marubozu-indicator&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-Marubozu-indicator&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>Candlesticks are very revealing, especially as confirmation signals or as early warning of a coming reversal. Among the most revealing is the Marubozu, with means &ldquo;bald.&rdquo; It is so called because the stick has little or no upper or lower shadows. </p> <p />Thu, 29 Sep 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-Marubozu-indicator&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-Marubozu-indicator&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Eight Types of Option Spreads http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Eight-types-of-option-spreads-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Eight-types-of-option-spreads-&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The spread describes trades with two or more options having different strike prices. &nbsp;There are eight types of spreads and, among these, several additional variations.</p>Thu, 22 Sep 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Eight-types-of-option-spreads-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Eight-types-of-option-spreads-&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Four Way to Decide Whether You Are an Investor or a Traderhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Four-Way-to-Decide-Whether-You-Are-an-Investor-or-a-Trader&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Four-Way-to-Decide-Whether-You-Are-an-Investor-or-a-Trader&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Are you an investor or a trader? This is a question some of us don&rsquo;t ask ourselves, but the answers define how and when you get in or out of positions. The dilemma for many would-be investors is that end up trading when they intend to invest for the long term. Using options to manage your portfolio solves some of these problems. </p>Thu, 15 Sep 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Four-Way-to-Decide-Whether-You-Are-an-Investor-or-a-Trader&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Four-Way-to-Decide-Whether-You-Are-an-Investor-or-a-Trader&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Don't Forget about the Value of Putshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Dont-forget-about-the-value-of-puts1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Dont-forget-about-the-value-of-puts1&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The put option is easily overlooked as a strategic advantage. Because markets move in both directions, the optimistic American trader can easily forget that markets go down at times, and not always up. This is where the put is easily overlooked or taken for granted.</p>Thu, 08 Sep 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Dont-forget-about-the-value-of-puts1&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Dont-forget-about-the-value-of-puts1&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Four Important Points about Terminologyhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Four-Important-Points-about-Terminology&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Four-Important-Points-about-Terminology&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Jargon. It is the chronic problem with options trading. The minute you try to explain how it all works to someone new, it turns them off. It demands a methodical, gradual, careful teaching method and willing newcomers. Otherwise, the special terminology will always be a stumbling block.</p>Thu, 01 Sep 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Four-Important-Points-about-Terminology&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Four-Important-Points-about-Terminology&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- 10 Flexible Trading Rules to Rememberhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--10-Flexible-Trading-Rules-to-Remember&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--10-Flexible-Trading-Rules-to-Remember&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Options are unique in the investment and trading worlds. These are the most flexible instruments you will ever find. You can design a strategy that is anywhere in between high-risk and ultra-conservative. You can set up a combination that costs little or nothing or even produces income. You can use options to reduce portfolio risk. Finally, options enable you to leverage capital and reduce overall market risks.<br /> <br /> </p>Thu, 25 Aug 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--10-Flexible-Trading-Rules-to-Remember&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--10-Flexible-Trading-Rules-to-Remember&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Three kinds of Spreads: Horizontal, Vertical and Diagonal http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Three-kinds-of-spreads-Horizontal-Vertical-and-Diagonal-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Three-kinds-of-spreads-Horizontal-Vertical-and-Diagonal-&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Spreads come in a vast variety of combinations, shapes and sizes. One of the best ways to distinguish spreads is by their geometric look. The three types&mdash;horizontal, vertical, and diagonal&mdash;can be graphically used to explain how the spread is put together.<br /> <br /> </p>Thu, 18 Aug 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Three-kinds-of-spreads-Horizontal-Vertical-and-Diagonal-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Three-kinds-of-spreads-Horizontal-Vertical-and-Diagonal-&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Is the Butterfly Spread a Worthwhile Strategy?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Is-the-Butterfly-Spread-a-Worthwhile-Strategy&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Is-the-Butterfly-Spread-a-Worthwhile-Strategy&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The idea of limiting risk is always appealing. But if limiting risk also means accepting very small profits, several questions come up: </p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; 1. Is it worth the margin requirements? </p> <p>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; 2. Can my capital be better employed elsewhere? </p> <p>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; 3. Will the strategy take too much effort to manage and track? </p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p>These questions should be addressed for strategies like the butterfly spread. </p> <p />Thu, 11 Aug 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Is-the-Butterfly-Spread-a-Worthwhile-Strategy&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Is-the-Butterfly-Spread-a-Worthwhile-Strategy&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Rules of Trading to Keep in Mindhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Rules-of-Trading-to-Keep-in-Mind&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Rules-of-Trading-to-Keep-in-Mind&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Options trading activity has grown at an amazing rate for the past 35 years. This accelerated once options became available on most listed stocks plus indices, ETFs and futures. This expanded trading market opens many possibilities. Options can be used as the vehicle for day trading or swing trading. Strategies can be very high-risk or very conservative. </p>Thu, 04 Aug 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Rules-of-Trading-to-Keep-in-Mind&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Rules-of-Trading-to-Keep-in-Mind&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Stock Market Trading -- Does Paper Trading Work?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Stock-Market-Trading--Does-Paper-Trading-Work&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Stock-Market-Trading--Does-Paper-Trading-Work&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Paper trading -- using a virtual account and trading with non-real money in a real time market setting -- &nbsp;may be a great way to learn the terminology, trading rules and restrictions, and most of all, to find out whether a theory produces profits or unexpected surprises.</p>Thu, 28 Jul 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Stock-Market-Trading--Does-Paper-Trading-Work&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Stock-Market-Trading--Does-Paper-Trading-Work&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Trading Ideas: The Stock Tip Quandary http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--The-stock-tip-quandary-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--The-stock-tip-quandary-&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Are &ldquo;tips&rdquo; worth pursuing? If you hear about a great opportunity from a friend, family member or stockbroker, you have to wonder about two major issues. First, is it a good tip? Second, why are they telling you? In a majority of cases, acting on stock tips is either illegal or ill-advised.</p>Thu, 21 Jul 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--The-stock-tip-quandary-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--The-stock-tip-quandary-&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Trading Ideas: The Resistance/Support Exchangehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--The-ResistanceSupport-Exchange&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--The-ResistanceSupport-Exchange&WT.rss_ev=a<p>When a current trading range is replaced with a new one -- meaning price levels move above resistance or below support, and remain there, new resistance and support levels are set. But one interesting outcome that traders will notice is the exchange of the old lines for new lines. Old resistance may become new support or old support become new resistance once the new trading range has been set.</p>Thu, 14 Jul 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--The-ResistanceSupport-Exchange&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--The-ResistanceSupport-Exchange&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Trading Ideas: Resistance and Support Proximity as Confirmation Signalshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--Resistance-and-support-proximity-as-confirmation-signals&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--Resistance-and-support-proximity-as-confirmation-signals&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Traders seek confirmation to improve the timing of entry and exit. Knowing that any signal can fail and mislead, all forms of potential confirmation are welcome. If you rely on candlestick formations, momentum oscillators, or chart patterns, you know all about confirmation signs. One you might have overlooked, however, is proximity of current price to the borders of the trading range.</p>Thu, 07 Jul 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--Resistance-and-support-proximity-as-confirmation-signals&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--Resistance-and-support-proximity-as-confirmation-signals&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Trading Ideas - Candlesticks for Confirmation of Other Technical Signalshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--Candlesticks-for-confirmation-of-other-technical-signals&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--Candlesticks-for-confirmation-of-other-technical-signals&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Candlestick charts give you a good basic indication of current momentum and coming reversal trends. Some very strong candlestick indicators help you to improve entry and exit timing, and build more profits while reducing losses.</p>Thu, 30 Jun 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--Candlesticks-for-confirmation-of-other-technical-signals&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--Candlesticks-for-confirmation-of-other-technical-signals&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading - The Dividend Timing Strategyhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--The-dividend-timing-strategy&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--The-dividend-timing-strategy&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p> </p> <p>By timing entry and exit of stock positions with ex-dividend date, you gain exceptionally high annualized returns and can churn capital in and out of positions to great advantage. Using three stocks with different ex-dates, you can earn 300% of the average annual dividend yield by moving in and out of positions--while eliminating all market risk. </p> <p />Thu, 23 Jun 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--The-dividend-timing-strategy&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--The-dividend-timing-strategy&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Technical Analysis: The Confirmation "Thing" Everyone Has Heard Abouthttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Technical-Analysis--The-confirmation-thing-everyone-has-heard-about&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Technical-Analysis--The-confirmation-thing-everyone-has-heard-about&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Most traders have heard about confirmation as an important part of entry and exit signals. In a nutshell, before acting on a signal, you need independent confirmation from a second signal. Many traders understand the concept, but many make their trade without confirmation, believing that they don&rsquo;t dare miss the opportunity available right now. Confirmation might take time. Even so, it is time well spent.</p>Thu, 16 Jun 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Technical-Analysis--The-confirmation-thing-everyone-has-heard-about&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Technical-Analysis--The-confirmation-thing-everyone-has-heard-about&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading - The Long Strategy: Benefits and Flawshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--The-long-strategy-benefits-and-flaws&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--The-long-strategy-benefits-and-flaws&WT.rss_ev=a<p>For most options traders, the entry into this world is through the long strategy. It is considered the most basic and easy to understand. The sequence--buy, hold, sell--is familiar and logical. However, this is also one of the highest-risk options strategies. Approval by brokers to trade more advanced but lower-risk strategies is not given easily; so paradoxically, new traders are required to accept higher risks.</p>Thu, 09 Jun 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--The-long-strategy-benefits-and-flaws&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--The-long-strategy-benefits-and-flaws&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Investing Tools: The Simplicity of the Trendlinehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Investing-Tools--The-simplicity-of-the-trendline&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Investing-Tools--The-simplicity-of-the-trendline&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The trendline is a simple tool that makes it easy to spot trends and, even better, when those short-term trends are about to end. You can draw a trendline on any chart and spot when the rising support or declining resistance is slowing, evening out, or reversing.</p>Thu, 02 Jun 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Investing-Tools--The-simplicity-of-the-trendline&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Investing-Tools--The-simplicity-of-the-trendline&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Investing Tools: The Basics of Candlestickshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Investing-Tools--The-basics-of-Candlesticks&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Investing-Tools--The-basics-of-Candlesticks&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Spotting trends quickly and easily is a goal of most technicians. This is why candlestick charting is so popular. A single candlestick reveals everything you need instantly: high and low range, open and close, and direction of price movement. Candlesticks are the perfect analytical tool, but ironically, many are not sure what to look for in the patterns candlesticks create.</p>Thu, 26 May 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Investing-Tools--The-basics-of-Candlesticks&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Investing-Tools--The-basics-of-Candlesticks&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Personal Financial Planning - Setting Up an Emergency Cash Fundhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Setting-Up-an-Emergency-Cash-Fund&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Setting-Up-an-Emergency-Cash-Fund&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Financial pros advise having three to six months' worth of income put aside for emergencies. You can create such a find in several ways without having to save up half a year&rsquo;s income and then leaving it on deposit at about 1%.</p>Thu, 19 May 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Setting-Up-an-Emergency-Cash-Fund&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Setting-Up-an-Emergency-Cash-Fund&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Personal Financial Planning - Mortgage acceleration as a planning toolhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Mortgage-acceleration-as-a-planning-tool&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Mortgage-acceleration-as-a-planning-tool&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Accelerating your mortgage has a big positive impact on getting debt free. Reducing interest increases your equity rapidly. The true cost of buying your home is not the purchase price, but the total price plus the interest you pay over your mortgage term. In a 30-year mortgage, you pay about twice as much as your purchase price (based on 30-year repayment at 5%).</p>Thu, 12 May 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Mortgage-acceleration-as-a-planning-tool&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Mortgage-acceleration-as-a-planning-tool&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Personal Financial Planning - Setting Your Own Debt Goalshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Setting-Your-Own-Debt-Goals&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Setting-Your-Own-Debt-Goals&WT.rss_ev=a<p>How do you escape debt once and for all? Living debt-free is the best way to ensure a secure future and comfortable retirement, but it is easier said than done. However, the best investment and debt policies become apparent&mdash;and manageable with five basic steps.</p>Thu, 05 May 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Setting-Your-Own-Debt-Goals&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Setting-Your-Own-Debt-Goals&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Personal Financial Planning - Home Mortgage Facts and Mythshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Home-Mortgage-Facts-and-Myths&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Home-Mortgage-Facts-and-Myths&WT.rss_ev=a<p>In the past, Americans dreamed of owning a home. In the future, the American Dream will be to own a home without any debt. </p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p>With mortgage acceleration, a home mortgage spanning 30 years can be cut in half and paid off more quickly. This not only reduces debt; it also drastically cuts interest expenses. In the typical 30-year mortgage, the debt is only one-half paid off after 20 years. So putting a little extra each month toward principal goes a long way to reducing the debt. And the earlier in the 30-year term the acceleration program begins, the greater the benefit. </p> <p />Thu, 28 Apr 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Home-Mortgage-Facts-and-Myths&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Home-Mortgage-Facts-and-Myths&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Synthetic Long Stock, Low-cost and Low-riskhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Synthetic-Long-Stock-Low-cost-and-Low-risk&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Synthetic-Long-Stock-Low-cost-and-Low-risk&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Anyone who wants to buy 100 shares of stock will naturally be concerned with the risk that a stock&rsquo;s price will decline. There is one options strategy that enables you to profit from ownership of 100 shares of stock, without actually owning 100 shares. At the same time, the strategy costs almost nothing to open and risks are lower than those of stock ownership.</p>Thu, 21 Apr 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Synthetic-Long-Stock-Low-cost-and-Low-risk&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Synthetic-Long-Stock-Low-cost-and-Low-risk&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: A Language of Its Ownhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-A-language-of-its-own&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-A-language-of-its-own&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Unlike any other specialized field of investing, the world of options is characterized by a confused array of specialized terms. Mastering these terms is as difficult -- but as important -- as figuring out how trades work.</p>Thu, 14 Apr 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-A-language-of-its-own&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-A-language-of-its-own&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Don't Program Yourself to Always Losehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Dont-program-yourself-to-always-lose&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Dont-program-yourself-to-always-lose&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Do you have an exit strategy? Options traders -- especially those opening long positions -- have to fight against time, hoping for profits before expiration, and with enough movement to offset declining time value. The odds are not favorable, so knowing when to get out is just as important as knowing when to get in.</p>Thu, 07 Apr 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Dont-program-yourself-to-always-lose&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Dont-program-yourself-to-always-lose&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The Deceptive Returns of Covered Callshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-deceptive-returns-of-covered-calls&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-deceptive-returns-of-covered-calls&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Which covered call produces the best yield? It is easy to think a later-expiring call with more time value is a better choice. But in fact, you are going to make more profit by selling shorter-term contracts for less cash, several times per year. It all comes down to figuring and comparing profits on an annualized basis.</p>Sat, 02 Apr 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-deceptive-returns-of-covered-calls&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-deceptive-returns-of-covered-calls&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: A Tax Season Note About "Qualified" Covered Callshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-A-tax-season-note-about-qualified-covered-calls&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-A-tax-season-note-about-qualified-covered-calls&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Are you expecting to have a covered call exercised, resulting in a long-term capital gain on stock? That&rsquo;s a great strategy, but one special tax rule might result in a short-term gain even when your holding period is longer than one year. This potential problem makes an otherwise smart strategy a potentially expensive mistake.</p>Thu, 24 Mar 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-A-tax-season-note-about-qualified-covered-calls&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-A-tax-season-note-about-qualified-covered-calls&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The Overlooked Put http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-The-overlooked-put-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-The-overlooked-put-&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The put, that bearish instrument not as well-liked as the call, deserves equal consideration. Why? Because markets are volatile and can either rise or fall. Puts enable traders to profit in down markets, but without the risks of shorting stock. Used together, puts and calls can be structured to create some very interesting and potentially very profitable options strategies.</p>Thu, 17 Mar 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-The-overlooked-put-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-The-overlooked-put-&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: It's All About Riskhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Its-all-about-risk&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Its-all-about-risk&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Traders can easily become so focused on the details and rules of the trade, that they overlook the true market risks of a particular strategy. The appeal and elegance of options trades can cloud the serious issue of risk and how it affects the success of a trading and investing program.</p>Thu, 10 Mar 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Its-all-about-risk&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Its-all-about-risk&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Short Puts, the Overlooked Strategyhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-short-puts-the-overlooked-strategy&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-short-puts-the-overlooked-strategy&WT.rss_ev=a<p>So many traders gravitate to the covered call. It is safe, profitable, and easy to understand. Uncovered calls, on the other hand, are high-risk and dangerous. But is the same true for uncovered puts? Perhaps not.</p>Thu, 03 Mar 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-short-puts-the-overlooked-strategy&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-short-puts-the-overlooked-strategy&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Upcoming Covered Call Webinarhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Upcoming-covered-call-webinar&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Upcoming-covered-call-webinar&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Have you wondered about the details of profitable covered calls? Most traders who understand the concept are also aware of some of the pitfalls. I am presenting a webinar through the New York Institute of Finance (NYIF) on March 24, entitled &ldquo;Putting Together the Profitable Covered Call.&rdquo; Details follow &hellip;</p>Thu, 03 Mar 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Upcoming-covered-call-webinar&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Upcoming-covered-call-webinar&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Total Return on Covered Callshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-total-return-on-covered-calls&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-total-return-on-covered-calls&WT.rss_ev=a<p>How do you calculate returns from writing covered calls? At first glance, this seems like an easy question; return is return, right? But in fact, calculating return can be done in several different ways. The most important aspects to the calculation are consistency and accuracy. Consistency ensures that your side-by-side comparisons are truly comparative. Accuracy ensures that you are taking everything into account to develop a realistic return model.</p>Thu, 24 Feb 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-total-return-on-covered-calls&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-total-return-on-covered-calls&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Stocks Picking, A Short Listhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-stocks-picking-a-short-list&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-stocks-picking-a-short-list&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Option premium varies based on the volatility, or risk, of the stock. So it follows that if you pick stocks only based on the richness of option premium, you are favoring high-risk over low-risk stocks. Even conservative traders like those writing covered calls can unintentionally end up with a high-risk portfolio by forgetting this important point.</p>Fri, 18 Feb 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-stocks-picking-a-short-list&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-stocks-picking-a-short-list&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Protecting Paper Profits with Optionshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-protecting-paper-profits-with-options&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-protecting-paper-profits-with-options&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Many traders think that options are purely for speculation, or that puts in particular works only when you are bearish on the market. But an easily overlooked additional application is the insurance put: buying puts to protect paper profits and, if the stock price does fall, to replace lost profits without having to sell stock.</p>Thu, 10 Feb 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-protecting-paper-profits-with-options&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-protecting-paper-profits-with-options&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: A Quick Look at the Covered Callhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-a-quick-look-at-the-covered-call&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-a-quick-look-at-the-covered-call&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Covered calls are among the safest, most conservative, and profitable of option strategies. There is even a way to eliminate the downside risk without added costs. A collar enables you to create both a covered call and an insurance put; the cost of the put is covered by the income from the covered call.</p>Thu, 03 Feb 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-a-quick-look-at-the-covered-call&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-a-quick-look-at-the-covered-call&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Reviewing the Basicshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Reviewing-the-Basics&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Reviewing-the-Basics&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The terminology of the options industry is probably the biggest inhibitor to traders becoming familiar with how options trading works. Mastering the basics helps to get over this hurdle and to make positive steps toward mastering options trading -- and also to understanding the broad range of risks involved from high-risk all the way to very conservative.</p>Thu, 27 Jan 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Reviewing-the-Basics&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Reviewing-the-Basics&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading ? Another Look at Risk http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Another-look-at-risk-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Another-look-at-risk-&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Options traders need to constantly revisit the issue of risk. No one can escape the various kinds of market risk, and options are exceptionally associated with this reality. Even though many strategies are very conservative, every trader needs to know the risk levels involved in a strategy -- before they commit cash.</p>Thu, 20 Jan 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Another-look-at-risk-&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Another-look-at-risk-&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Know Your Tax Riskshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Know-your-tax-risks&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Know-your-tax-risks&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Options are odd devices in many ways; but one potential risk many traders are completely unaware of is the tax risk involved. Taxation for options is complicated and illogical in many respects. Know where you stand before closing out positions, to avoid having an unpleasant tax surprise.</p>Thu, 13 Jan 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Know-your-tax-risks&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Know-your-tax-risks&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Timing Short-term Tradeshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-timing-short-term-trades&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-timing-short-term-trades&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Market risk exists whether you own shares of stock or use options to anticipate marketwide movement. In that sense, options are not higher-risk than stocks. In fact, because one option lets you control 100 shares of stock, they are far less risky. If you can benefit from stock price movement for about 5% of the cost of those shares, your risks are lower. </p> <p>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; The problem in these uncertain market conditions is known by most traders: When do you put money in the market, and where is your capital safe? Because the answers cannot be known, many people are simply on the sidelines waiting for a clearer picture to emerge. </p> <p />Thu, 06 Jan 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-timing-short-term-trades&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-timing-short-term-trades&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: the Tasuki Gaphttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-tasuki-gap&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-tasuki-gap&WT.rss_ev=a<p>In Japanese, a &ldquo;tasuki&rdquo; is a sash used to hold up a shirt sleeve, a type of garter. In a tasuki gap, a parallel is found in the three sessions, in which a directional gap is upheld in the third and crucial session. The gap is not filled, so that the direction of movement is strongly supported.</p>Thu, 30 Dec 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-tasuki-gap&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-tasuki-gap&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: A Holiday Poemhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-A-holiday-poem&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-A-holiday-poem&WT.rss_ev=a<p>In your excitement at spotting brightly-colored wrapped presents and anticipation of Santa&rsquo;s mysterious appearance (some term it a midnight break-in), please do not forget to keep perspective on the season and the risks involved in trading options &hellip;</p>Thu, 23 Dec 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-A-holiday-poem&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-A-holiday-poem&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Patterns: Side-By-Side Lineshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-patterns-side-by-side-lines&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-patterns-side-by-side-lines&WT.rss_ev=a<p>One of the more obscure candlestick patterns is the side-by-side lines. This comes in four types: white bull, white bear, black bull and black bear. The similarity in appearance and meaning is confusing, so that the side-by-side lines formation is easily overlooked. However, it can provide important reversal signals and, along with other candlestick formations, can be a valuable weapon in every chartist&rsquo;s skill set.</p>Thu, 16 Dec 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-patterns-side-by-side-lines&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-patterns-side-by-side-lines&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Patterns: The Abandoned Babyhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-patterns-the-abandoned-baby&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-patterns-the-abandoned-baby&WT.rss_ev=a<p>This descriptively named formation involves three sessions. The first two days form a doji star -- two sessions with a gap in between -- and the third is a session moving in the opposite direction after a gap.</p>Thu, 09 Dec 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-patterns-the-abandoned-baby&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-patterns-the-abandoned-baby&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Patterns: Inside and Outside Formationshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-patterns-Inside-and-Outside-formations&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-patterns-Inside-and-Outside-formations&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Among the complex patterns you see in candlesticks -- involving three sessions -- two of the more subtle are the inside and outside formations. These consist of two parts: inside patterns begin with a two-session harami and a third decisive day; outside patterns start with a two-session engulfing formation and then a third, decisive day.</p>Thu, 02 Dec 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-patterns-Inside-and-Outside-formations&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-patterns-Inside-and-Outside-formations&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: A Thanksgiving Options Poemhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/A-Thanksgiving-Options-Poem&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=A-Thanksgiving-Options-Poem&WT.rss_ev=a<p>It does not always have to be about strategies, profits, and risk management. Sometimes it's about sitting down together and enjoying a feast ...</p>Thu, 25 Nov 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/A-Thanksgiving-Options-Poem&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=A-Thanksgiving-Options-Poem&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The 7 Kinds of Straddles Every Trader Needs to Knowhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-7-kinds-of-straddles-every-trader-needs-to-know&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-7-kinds-of-straddles-every-trader-needs-to-know&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The <i>straddle</i> is an options strategy that in its most basic form involves opening options on the same strike. However, there are many variations to this strategy, and some straddles resemble spreads as hybrids. It helps to clarify the strategy by defining the 7 basic straddles every trader needs to know -- not only in terms of how they are constructed, but also for risk levels.</p>Thu, 18 Nov 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-7-kinds-of-straddles-every-trader-needs-to-know&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-7-kinds-of-straddles-every-trader-needs-to-know&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading: Five reasons to use synthetic positions for swing tradinghttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Five-reasons-to-use-synthetic-positions-for-swing-trading&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Five-reasons-to-use-synthetic-positions-for-swing-trading&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Synthetic stock -- created with options -- vastly reduces swing trading risk. It makes more sense to create synthetics than either of the two alternatives (buying/selling stock or swing trading with options alone).</p>Thu, 11 Nov 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Five-reasons-to-use-synthetic-positions-for-swing-trading&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Five-reasons-to-use-synthetic-positions-for-swing-trading&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The Synthetic Short Salehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-Synthetic-short-sale&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-Synthetic-short-sale&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Shorting stock is a high-risk strategy that most traders avoid. It requires borrowing stock from your brokerage firm, selling it, and hoping the price falls. You have to maintain margin and pay interest on the borrowed stock; and if the stock price rises, margin requirements grow and you could end up losing. You can duplicate the potential profits without all of that risk by creating a synthetic short sale with options.</p>Thu, 04 Nov 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-Synthetic-short-sale&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-Synthetic-short-sale&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading: Three options-based tax planning ideas for carryover losseshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Three-options-based-tax-planning-ideas-for-carryover-losses&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Three-options-based-tax-planning-ideas-for-carryover-losses&WT.rss_ev=a<p>After the disastrous markets of the last two years, many investors and traders find themselves with huge carryover capital losses. Under current rules, you can deduct only $3,000 maximum per year, meaning that the excess could last for many years into the future. However, this situation presents opportunities involving options. Three goods ideas are among these opportunities &hellip;</p>Thu, 28 Oct 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Three-options-based-tax-planning-ideas-for-carryover-losses&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Three-options-based-tax-planning-ideas-for-carryover-losses&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading: The Protected Covered Call Ratiohttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-protected-covered-call-ratio&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-protected-covered-call-ratio&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>The ratio write consists of writing a combination of covered and uncovered calls. The uncovered portion is at risk, but the strategy is not as high-risk as just writing uncovered calls. The combination of time decay and implied volatility makes a well-timed ratio write a safe strategy, assuming all of the right elements are in place. For those seeking more protection than what is provided by time decay, you can protected the uncovered portion with a higher-strike long call. </p> <p />Thu, 21 Oct 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-The-protected-covered-call-ratio&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-The-protected-covered-call-ratio&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Four Techniques to Reduce Risk in Covered Call Ratio Writinghttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Four-Techniques-to-Reduce-Risk-in-Covered-Call-Ratio-Writing&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Four-Techniques-to-Reduce-Risk-in-Covered-Call-Ratio-Writing&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The &ldquo;ratio write&rdquo; is a variation of the well-known covered call. It increases market risk but, properly put together, those risks are manageable for moderate investors and -- in some formations -- even for conservatives. If you like the covered call, you might also like the ratio write.</p>Thu, 14 Oct 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Four-Techniques-to-Reduce-Risk-in-Covered-Call-Ratio-Writing&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Four-Techniques-to-Reduce-Risk-in-Covered-Call-Ratio-Writing&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - thrusting lines and separating lineshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--thrusting-lines-and-separating-lines&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--thrusting-lines-and-separating-lines&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Candlestick formations often are described with aggressive imagery. For example, the thrusting lines and separating lines are two kinds of double-session candlestick formations that foreshadow trend reversal. The thrusting lines is especially strong because it consists of two long candlesticks with a flip in the direction. The separating lines formation has a significant but invisible gap, making it equally strong as a sign of coming price reversal.</p>Thu, 07 Oct 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--thrusting-lines-and-separating-lines&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--thrusting-lines-and-separating-lines&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - meeting lines and piercing lineshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--meeting-lines-and-piercing-lines&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--meeting-lines-and-piercing-lines&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Many candlestick formations have graphic and descriptive names. This helps to keep the dozens of candlestick indicators clear in your mind. Among these are several two-session patterns including the meeting lines and piercing lines. These serve as great confirmation signals at the end of a trend, signaling potential reversal. For day traders and swing traders, these kinds of subtle for informative signals are quite valuable.</p>Thu, 30 Sep 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--meeting-lines-and-piercing-lines&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--meeting-lines-and-piercing-lines&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - the harami and harami cross patternshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-harami-and-harami-cross-patterns&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-harami-and-harami-cross-patterns&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The word &ldquo;harami&rdquo; means &ldquo;pregnant&rdquo; in Japanese, an apt description of the appearance of this two-session candlestick signal. This pattern is the opposite of the engulfing pattern, in which a small session is surpassed, or engulfed, by the one that follows. In the harami, a long session is followed by a much smaller session of opposite color. This is the pregnant part, the protrusion that signals a reversal.</p>Thu, 23 Sep 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-harami-and-harami-cross-patterns&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-harami-and-harami-cross-patterns&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - the engulfing patternhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-engulfing-pattern&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-engulfing-pattern&WT.rss_ev=a<p>A revealing two-session candlestick indicator is called the <i>engulfing pattern</i> -- the second session is longer on both sides, &ldquo;engulfing&rdquo; its opposite-colored predecessor. Two attributes are needed to make it a true engulfing pattern. First, the real body of the second session is extended higher <i>and </i>lower than the previous day and has the opposite color. Second, both upper and lower shadows should also be longer both above and below the previous day&rsquo;s.</p>Thu, 16 Sep 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-engulfing-pattern&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-engulfing-pattern&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options trading: Dialogue from great literature ? "Gone with the Wind"http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Dialogue-from-great-literature-Gone-with-the-Wind&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Dialogue-from-great-literature-Gone-with-the-Wind&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Rhett - I assume, dear Scarlett, that Charles provided well for you? </p> <p>Scarlett - Why yes, he did even though we were not married for long. </p> <p>Rhett - Did he invest any of your money in options? </p> <p />Thu, 16 Sep 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Dialogue-from-great-literature-Gone-with-the-Wind&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Dialogue-from-great-literature-Gone-with-the-Wind&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - the single-stick reversal signalshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-single-stick-reversal-signals&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-single-stick-reversal-signals&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Three candlestick signals involve single sessions, but they share one usual characteristic: Unlike virtually all other candlestick signals, the color of the real body does not matter. What does matter is where these indicators show up in the current trend. So the three -- the spinning top, hanging man, and hammer -- are valuable reversal, expansions on what day traders and swing traders like to call &ldquo;narrow range days.&rdquo;</p>Thu, 09 Sep 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-single-stick-reversal-signals&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-single-stick-reversal-signals&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Commentary by Literature's Big Names, a Labor Day Weekend Specialhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Commentary-by-literatures-big-names-a-Labor-Day-Weekend-special&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Commentary-by-literatures-big-names-a-Labor-Day-Weekend-special&WT.rss_ev=a<p>It may be true that listed options are a somewhat modern oddity. But some quick research has turned up interesting commentary on options trading and, specifically, concerning risks and going short. So William Shakespeare, Edgar Allen Poe and even Ogden Nash added their voices to the unending debate about options trading &hellip;</p>Fri, 03 Sep 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-trading-Commentary-by-literatures-big-names-a-Labor-Day-Weekend-special&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-trading-Commentary-by-literatures-big-names-a-Labor-Day-Weekend-special&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting - the doji single-stick candlehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-doji-single-stick-candle&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-doji-single-stick-candle&WT.rss_ev=a<p>When can a &ldquo;mistake&rdquo; provide you with a strong charting signal? The candlestick called the &ldquo;doji&rdquo; -- Japanese for &ldquo;mistake&rdquo; is an often-occurring and valuable signal. Even though the indicator involves a single session, it is a meaningful red flag.</p>Thu, 02 Sep 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-doji-single-stick-candle&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-doji-single-stick-candle&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Candlestick Charting -- the Marubozu single-stick candlehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-Marubozu-single-stick-candle&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-Marubozu-single-stick-candle&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Candlestick formations are very revealing, and are especially valuable as confirmation signals or even as an early warning of a coming price reversal. Among the most revealing is the Marubozu, with means &ldquo;bald.&rdquo; It is so called because the stick has little or no upper or lower shadows.</p>Thu, 26 Aug 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Candlestick-Charting--the-Marubozu-single-stick-candle&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Candlestick-Charting--the-Marubozu-single-stick-candle&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- The 8 important spread varieties every trader needs to knowhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--The-8-important-spread-varieties-every-trader-needs-to-know&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--The-8-important-spread-varieties-every-trader-needs-to-know&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The spread -- trading in two or more options with different strike prices -- can be confusing because there are dozens of varieties. It helps keep things clear to remember the following eight distinctions between types of spreads.</p>Thu, 19 Aug 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--The-8-important-spread-varieties-every-trader-needs-to-know&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--The-8-important-spread-varieties-every-trader-needs-to-know&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Four Way to Define Whether You Are an Investor or a Traderhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Four-Way-to-Define-Whether-You-Are-an-Investor-or-a-Trader&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Four-Way-to-Define-Whether-You-Are-an-Investor-or-a-Trader&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>Are you an investor or a trader? This is a question some of us don&rsquo;t ask ourselves, but the answers define how and when you get in or out of positions. The dilemma for many would-be investors is that end up trading when they intend to invest for the long term. Using options to manage your portfolio solves some of these problems. Ask yourself these questions to decide where you fit: </p> <p />Thu, 12 Aug 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Four-Way-to-Define-Whether-You-Are-an-Investor-or-a-Trader&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Four-Way-to-Define-Whether-You-Are-an-Investor-or-a-Trader&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Five Benefits to Trading in Putshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Five-Benefits-to-Trading-in-Puts&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Five-Benefits-to-Trading-in-Puts&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The &ldquo;put&rdquo; option, unlike the better-known call, is often overlooked as a strategic weapon. Because markets move in both directions, the ever-optimistic American trader can easily forget that it goes down at times, and not only up. This is where the put -- like a shy teenage girl at her first dance -- is easily overlooked or taken for granted.</p>Thu, 05 Aug 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Five-Benefits-to-Trading-in-Puts&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Five-Benefits-to-Trading-in-Puts&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Four Things to Remember About Terminologyhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Four-Things-to-Remember-About-Terminology&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Four-Things-to-Remember-About-Terminology&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Anyone new to the options market knows that the jargon and special, complex descriptions of trades make this a difficult field to master. It&rsquo;s a struggle. When do you get to the point where all of the jargon comes to you easily, when you overcome the confusion? When does it get easy? There is an answer &hellip;</p>Thu, 29 Jul 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Four-Things-to-Remember-About-Terminology&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Four-Things-to-Remember-About-Terminology&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Ten Advantages of Flexibilityhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Ten-Advantages-of-Flexibility&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Ten-Advantages-of-Flexibility&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Options are unique in the investment and trading worlds. These are the most flexible instruments you will ever find. You can design a strategy that is anywhere in between high-risk and ultra-conservative. You can set up a combination that costs little or nothing or even produces income. You can use options to reduce portfolio risk. Finally, options enable you to leverage capital and reduce overall market risks.</p>Thu, 22 Jul 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Ten-Advantages-of-Flexibility&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Ten-Advantages-of-Flexibility&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- 17 Odd Options Definitions You?ve Never Heardhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--10-Odd-Options-Definitions-Youve-Never-Heard&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--10-Odd-Options-Definitions-Youve-Never-Heard&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Anyone who has taken a look at options knows the jargon can be discouraging. Below are several terms you may not have heard before, and definitions you definitely have not ever seen. </p>Thu, 15 Jul 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--10-Odd-Options-Definitions-Youve-Never-Heard&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--10-Odd-Options-Definitions-Youve-Never-Heard&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Horizontal, Vertical or Diagonal - Which Spread is For Youhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Horizontal-Vertical-or-Diagonal--Which-Spread-is-For-You&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Horizontal-Vertical-or-Diagonal--Which-Spread-is-For-You&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Spreads come in a vast variety of combinations, shapes and sizes. One of the best ways to distinguish spreads is by their geometric look. The three types -- horizontal, vertical, and diagonal -- can be graphically used to explain how the spread is put together.</p>Thu, 08 Jul 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Horizontal-Vertical-or-Diagonal--Which-Spread-is-For-You&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Horizontal-Vertical-or-Diagonal--Which-Spread-is-For-You&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading - An Independence Day Poemhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--An-Independence-Day-poen&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--An-Independence-Day-poen&WT.rss_ev=a<p>I am a U.S. citizen, but a naturalized one. So I really appreciate the Fourth of a special day to celebrate The United States of America. It is easy to forget what it's all about when life is taken up with the chaos of daily trading and market watching. And so, a bit of perspective ...</p>Fri, 02 Jul 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--An-Independence-Day-poen&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--An-Independence-Day-poen&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Is the Butterfly Spread Too Complicated?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Is-the-Butterfly-Spread-Too-Complicated&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Is-the-Butterfly-Spread-Too-Complicated&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Everyone wants to limit risks, but if you also limit potential profits, is it worth the trouble? The butterfly spread comes in several varieties, but normally involves two positions offset by a third and fourth, one with a higher strike and one with a lower strike. Some will ask: What&rsquo;s the point? With options, you normally take a relatively small risk of 100% loss for the possible big profit. Doesn&rsquo;t the butterfly spread end up being much ado about nothing?</p>Thu, 01 Jul 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Is-the-Butterfly-Spread-Too-Complicated&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Is-the-Butterfly-Spread-Too-Complicated&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Remembering the Basic Rules of Tradinghttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Remembering-the-Basic-Rules-of-Trading&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Remembering-the-Basic-Rules-of-Trading&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>Options trading activity has been growing at an incredible rate over the past 35 years or so. The rate of growth has accelerated recently as options have becomes available on a growing number of stocks as well as indices, ETFs and futures. </p> <p />Thu, 24 Jun 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Remembering-the-Basic-Rules-of-Trading&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Remembering-the-Basic-Rules-of-Trading&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading -- Can You Learn Enough with Paper Trading?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Can-You-Learn-Enough-with-Paper-Trading&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Can-You-Learn-Enough-with-Paper-Trading&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The idea of paper trading -- setting up a virtual account and trading in a &ldquo;real time&rdquo; environment but without any actual money at risk -- is an excellent way to learn the terminology, trading rules and restrictions, and most of all, to find out whether a great theory really produces profits.</p>Thu, 17 Jun 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Can-You-Learn-Enough-with-Paper-Trading&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Can-You-Learn-Enough-with-Paper-Trading&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Trading Ideas - Profound Questions to Ask about Stock Tipshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--Profound-questions-to-ask-about-stock-tips&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--Profound-questions-to-ask-about-stock-tips&WT.rss_ev=a<p>So you get a &ldquo;great tip&rdquo; from a relative, friend, co-worker or even a broker. How do you know it is a good tip and not just one those idle rumors that seem to forever float around out in the world of trading? A short list of smart questions will help you avoid the big mistakes many traders make just because they act on tips without knowing the facts first.</p>Thu, 10 Jun 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--Profound-questions-to-ask-about-stock-tips&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--Profound-questions-to-ask-about-stock-tips&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Trading Ideas - The Resistance/Support Fliphttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--The-ResistanceSupport-Flip&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--The-ResistanceSupport-Flip&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>A phenomenon that many traders miss is the tendency for resistance and support to flip following a price breakout. In other words, on the upset, when price breaks through resistance, the old resistance level becomes the new support level; and when price breaks out below support, old support becomes new resistance. </p> <p />Thu, 03 Jun 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--The-ResistanceSupport-Flip&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--The-ResistanceSupport-Flip&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Trading Ideas - Candlesticks as Valuable Confirmation Toolshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--Candlesticks-as-Valuable-Confirmation-Tools&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--Candlesticks-as-Valuable-Confirmation-Tools&WT.rss_ev=a<p>If you have taken a look at candlestick charts, you probably have a good basic understanding of how it works. A few exceptionally strong candlestick formations can help you to vastly improve your entry and exit timing, and build more profits while reducing future losses.</p>Thu, 27 May 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Trading-Ideas--Candlesticks-as-Valuable-Confirmation-Tools&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Trading-Ideas--Candlesticks-as-Valuable-Confirmation-Tools&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading - Timing Swing Trading with Ex-dividend Datehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Timing-swing-trading-with-ex-dividend-date&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Timing-swing-trading-with-ex-dividend-date&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>If you are using soon-to-expire options as part of a swing trading strategy, one enhancement to the strategy can increase your income substantially. By timing entry and exit with ex-dividend date in mind, you gain exceptionally high annualized returns and can churn capital in and out of positions to great advantage. </p> <p />Thu, 20 May 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--Timing-swing-trading-with-ex-dividend-date&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--Timing-swing-trading-with-ex-dividend-date&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading - What You Should Know About the Basic Long Strategyhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--What-You-Should-Know-About-the-Basic-Long-Strategy&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--What-You-Should-Know-About-the-Basic-Long-Strategy&WT.rss_ev=a<p>For anyone trading options for the first time, the basic strategy of buying calls or puts is the first level allowed by brokerage firms. But there are a few things you should know about this basic strategy. It isn&rsquo;t as straightforward -- or low-risk -- as it might appear.</p>Thu, 13 May 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading--What-You-Should-Know-About-the-Basic-Long-Strategy&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading--What-You-Should-Know-About-the-Basic-Long-Strategy&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: The Nashville May Day Flood of 2010 - Keeping Things in Perspectivehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/The-Nashville-May-Day-Flood-of-2010--Keeping-Things-in-Perspective&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=The-Nashville-May-Day-Flood-of-2010--Keeping-Things-in-Perspective&WT.rss_ev=a<p>As a departure from my usual financial topics, this post briefly talks about the flood that we in Middle Tennessee suffered through over the weekend. This was my first flood, and I hope my last. It&rsquo;s one of those things you hear about on the news, that happens to other people somewhere else. And then one day you&rsquo;re standing in eight inches of water. </p> <p />Thu, 06 May 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/The-Nashville-May-Day-Flood-of-2010--Keeping-Things-in-Perspective&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=The-Nashville-May-Day-Flood-of-2010--Keeping-Things-in-Perspective&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Investing Tools - The Value in Trendlineshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Investing-Tools--The-Value-in-trendlines&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Investing-Tools--The-Value-in-trendlines&WT.rss_ev=a<p>How would you like a simple tool making it easy to spot trends and, more important, when those short-term trends are coming to an end? You can draw your own trendline on any chart and immediately spot when the rising support or declining resistance is signaling a reversal.</p>Thu, 29 Apr 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Investing-Tools--The-Value-in-trendlines&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Investing-Tools--The-Value-in-trendlines&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Investing Tools - What's All the Fuss About Candlesticks?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Investing-Tools--Whats-All-the-Fuss-About-Candlesticks&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Investing-Tools--Whats-All-the-Fuss-About-Candlesticks&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Investors and traders are very visual, and if you&rsquo;re like most people, you can clearly spot a trend from a chart much faster than you can running a column of numbers and percentages. The candlestick chart is the perfect analytical tool because it shows you everything you need to know about a day&rsquo;s price movement, in a single glance.</p>Thu, 22 Apr 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Investing-Tools--Whats-All-the-Fuss-About-Candlesticks&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Investing-Tools--Whats-All-the-Fuss-About-Candlesticks&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Personal Financial Planning - Setting Up an Emergency Cash Reservehttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Setting-Up-an-Emergency-Cash-Reserve&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Setting-Up-an-Emergency-Cash-Reserve&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>Some financial pros tell you to have six months' worth of income put aside. This is easier said than done. But you can create an emergency reserve in several ways short of saving up half a year&rsquo;s income and then leaving it on deposit at about 1%. </p> <p />Thu, 15 Apr 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Setting-Up-an-Emergency-Cash-Reserve&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Setting-Up-an-Emergency-Cash-Reserve&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Personal Financial Planning - Mortgage Acceleration Factshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Mortgage-Acceleration-Facts&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Mortgage-Acceleration-Facts&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Accelerating your mortgage has a huge impact - in a positive way - on the time you need to get debt free. Reducing interest helps increase your equity rapidly. The real cost of buying your home is not the purchase price, but the total price plus the interest you pay over many years. In a 30-year mortgage, you pay about 93% more than your purchase price (based on 30-year repayment at 5%).</p>Thu, 08 Apr 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Mortgage-Acceleration-Facts&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Mortgage-Acceleration-Facts&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Personal Financial Planning - Effective Investment and Debt Policieshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Effective-Investment-and-Debt-Policies&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Effective-Investment-and-Debt-Policies&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Even if you begin a program for repayment of consumer debt, the cycle goes on. How do you stop spending and eliminate debt once and for all? Once you realize that living debt-free is the best way to ensure a secure future and comfortable retirement, the best investment and debt policies become apparent -- and manageable.</p>Thu, 01 Apr 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Effective-Investment-and-Debt-Policies&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Effective-Investment-and-Debt-Policies&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Personal Financial Planning - Where the Home Mortgage Fits Inhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Where-the-Home-Mortgage-Fits-In&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Where-the-Home-Mortgage-Fits-In&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Even with the best and most comprehensive investment plan, will you be able to retire if you are carrying a large home mortgage? The American Dream used to be buying a home. In the future, it is more likely that the American Dream will be to own a home without any debt.</p>Thu, 25 Mar 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Personal-Financial-Planning--Where-the-Home-Mortgage-Fits-In&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Personal-Financial-Planning--Where-the-Home-Mortgage-Fits-In&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Creating a Synthetic Long Stock Positionhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Creating-a-Synthetic-Long-Stock-Position&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Creating-a-Synthetic-Long-Stock-Position&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>You want to benefit from market movement, but you are concerned with market volatility and downside risk. One solution is to open a synthetic long stock position using options. This requires much less cash and has significantly lower risks -- but at the same time the position changes in value to the same degree as owning shares. </p> <p />Thu, 18 Mar 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Creating-a-Synthetic-Long-Stock-Position&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Creating-a-Synthetic-Long-Stock-Position&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Struggling with the Maze of Jargonhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Struggling-with-the-maze-of-jargon&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Struggling-with-the-maze-of-jargon&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Most people struggle with the jargon involved with options trading. It does have a language of its own, partly from necessity but partly because insiders like to have their own language. So all of the specialized language used in the stock market pales in comparison.</p>Thu, 11 Mar 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Struggling-with-the-maze-of-jargon&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Struggling-with-the-maze-of-jargon&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Avoiding the "No-win" Strategyhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Avoiding-the-No-win-strategy&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Avoiding-the-No-win-strategy&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Believe it or not, some traders set themselves up to lose in their option strategies, no matter what happens. With about 75% of all options expiring worthless or losing money, you can&rsquo;t afford to set yourself up. A &ldquo;limited win&rdquo; or &ldquo;limited loss&rdquo; strategy makes much more sense.</p>Thu, 04 Mar 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Avoiding-the-No-win-strategy&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Avoiding-the-No-win-strategy&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Which Options Give You the Best Returns in Covered Calls?http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-which-options-give-you-the-best-returns-in-covered-calls&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-which-options-give-you-the-best-returns-in-covered-calls&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>Covered call writers constantly struggle to balance the time element of covered calls with the amount of premium income. Keeping the time exposure short is desirable, but longer-term options have richer premiums because of more time value. But there is a good rule of thumb for picking one short call over another. Most of the time you will do better picking calls expiring within one to two months. </p> <p />Thu, 25 Feb 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-which-options-give-you-the-best-returns-in-covered-calls&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-which-options-give-you-the-best-returns-in-covered-calls&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The Mysteries of the "Qualified" Covered Callhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-The-mysterious-of-the-qualified-covered-call&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-The-mysterious-of-the-qualified-covered-call&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Tax laws are complex, as we all know. But one of the most mind-boggling is the qualified covered call rule. If you write a call too deep in the money, the count of time to achieve long-term capital gains simply stops and doesn&rsquo;t restart until; the position if closed. If this means exercise, then the stock profits are taxed at short-term rates.</p>Thu, 18 Feb 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-The-mysterious-of-the-qualified-covered-call&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-The-mysterious-of-the-qualified-covered-call&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The put "don't get no respect."http://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-The-put-dont-get-no-respect&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-The-put-dont-get-no-respect&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Is it un-American to consider puts on an equal footing with calls? In fact, the advantage of using calls <i>and</i> puts is that it enables you to exploit market movement in both directions. Optimism is a great attitude, but only if stock prices are rising.</p>Thu, 11 Feb 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-The-put-dont-get-no-respect&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-The-put-dont-get-no-respect&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Keeping Risk Levels in Mindhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Keeping-risk-levels-in-mind&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Keeping-risk-levels-in-mind&WT.rss_ev=a<p>It&rsquo;s easy to get lost in the complexity of options trades and even to enter trades that are entirely inappropriate. Why? The appeal of a complex trade may easily override your risk tolerance, leading you unintentionally into high-risk ventures that are not good fits for you.</p>Thu, 04 Feb 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-Keeping-risk-levels-in-mind&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-Keeping-risk-levels-in-mind&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The Value of the Short Puthttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-value-of-the-short-put&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-value-of-the-short-put&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The covered call is probably the best-known and favorite of all options strategies. Of course. It is safe and profitable, yielding double digit returns if done right. But the uncovered put should not be ignored in the world of shorts &hellip; it can also play a part in your portfolio.</p>Thu, 28 Jan 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-value-of-the-short-put&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-value-of-the-short-put&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The Total Return Covered Call Modelhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-total-return-covered-call-model&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-total-return-covered-call-model&WT.rss_ev=a<p>When you compare returns for covered call writing, what is the potential total return? This is not as easy to calculate as you might think. </p>Wed, 20 Jan 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-total-return-covered-call-model&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-total-return-covered-call-model&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Picking the Right Stockshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-picking-the-right-stocks&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-picking-the-right-stocks&WT.rss_ev=a<p>The more volatile the stock, the richer the option premium. However, your criteria for picking stocks should never be based on premium levels, but on sound, reasonable methods. I like five criteria in particular for picking stocks.</p>Thu, 14 Jan 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-picking-the-right-stocks&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-picking-the-right-stocks&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: New Options Bookshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/New-options-books&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=New-options-books&WT.rss_ev=a<p>I hope you will all check out my recently published options books. A listing follows ... </p> <p />Mon, 11 Jan 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/New-options-books&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=New-options-books&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The Insurance Puthttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-insurance-put&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-insurance-put&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Puts are not just for bearish sentiment. True, as a bear you can buy puts thinking the stock&rsquo;s price is moving south. But you can also buy puts to protect paper profits when your stock&rsquo;s price runs up quickly.</p>Thu, 07 Jan 2010 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-the-insurance-put&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-the-insurance-put&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: Some Covered Call Basicshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-some-covered-call-basics&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-some-covered-call-basics&WT.rss_ev=a<p> </p> <p>Even if you have heard about covered calls, some important caveats apply and are worth reviewing. It&rsquo;s not simply a matter of selling the richest contract &hellip;</p> <p />Thu, 31 Dec 2009 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-some-covered-call-basics&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-some-covered-call-basics&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: An Options Christmas Poemhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-An-Options-Christmas-Poem&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-An-Options-Christmas-Poem&WT.rss_ev=a<p>So you think options are all dry and boring? Here&rsquo;s an options Christmas greeting to remind you of a few of the basics.</p>Thu, 24 Dec 2009 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-An-Options-Christmas-Poem&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-An-Options-Christmas-Poem&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: A Few of the Basicshttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-A-Few-of-the-Basics&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-A-Few-of-the-Basics&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Options are widely misunderstood, largely because of the jargon used in the industry. Following are some of the definitions and principles every potential options trader needs.</p>Thu, 17 Dec 2009 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-A-Few-of-the-Basics&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-A-Few-of-the-Basics&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: How Options Actually Workhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-The-World-of-Risk-and-Reward3&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-The-World-of-Risk-and-Reward3&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Even if you have studied options in depth, there are a few important aspects to them you might not know. A few basics clarify how options work and how they are traded.</p>Thu, 10 Dec 2009 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-The-World-of-Risk-and-Reward3&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-The-World-of-Risk-and-Reward3&WT.rss_ev=aBlog :: Options Trading: The World of Risk and Rewardhttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-The-World-of-Risk-and-Reward4&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-The-World-of-Risk-and-Reward4&WT.rss_ev=a<p>Most people have heard something about options, usually that they are extremely risky and difficult to understand. I dispute both of these points. They can be risky, <i>or</i> they can be very conservative. </p>Thu, 03 Dec 2009 00:00:00 GMThttp://www.ftpress.com/blogs/Options-Trading-The-World-of-Risk-and-Reward4&WT.rss_f=AuthorBlog&WT.rss_a=Options-Trading-The-World-of-Risk-and-Reward4&WT.rss_ev=a