In the world of trading, understanding option strategies is crucial for maximizing profits and avoiding losses. Many traders face setbacks due to trading naked options – that is, buying call or put options without strategies. But fear not, as I’m here to guide you through five effective strategies that can transform your trading game.
Let’s start with the basics, catering to both newcomers and those seeking advanced insights. Whether you’re trading Nifty, Bank Nifty, or stock options, the core concepts I’m about to explain remain consistent. However, if you’re new, it’s wise to begin with Nifty options before looking into Bank Nifty due to its volatility.
Imagine Nifty currently stands at 16,200 – this is the “at the money” price. To illustrate a strategy, let’s consider a bullish outlook, where you anticipate Nifty to rise by 200 points. This is the foundation for constructing an option strategy that aligns with your market view.
Navigating the world of options trading demands a strategic approach, steering clear of the pitfalls of trading naked options. When envisioning Nifty’s rise to 16,400 from its current 16,200, impulse often drives traders to purchase Naked Options. This immediate buy, at say ₹150 per option and a total investment of ₹7,500 (₹150 multiplied by 50), carries the risk of total loss if the anticipated price movement doesn’t materialize.
Having shared essential insights through various tutorials, covering price action, option chain analysis, market range identification, and PCR ratio, we now move forward. The crux of the issue lies in recognizing that option buying can yield unlimited profits. Yet, sellers face limited gains and potential unlimited losses.
The imperative, as advocated by Warren Buffett, is capital preservation. The aim isn’t explosive gains but safeguarding the initial investment. In this context, employing option strategies becomes vital. The paramount strategy to understand is the Bull Call Spread, which addresses the scenario of a market increase.
There are four key market scenarios we tackle. First, when the market surges, and I present a strategy for this case. Second, a bearish market outlook, which I address with a specific strategy. The third view is a sideways market, and yes, there are strategies to handle this as well. Finally, acknowledging the unpredictability of events causing market volatility, a strategy for uncertain times is also at hand.
One strategy, the Bull Call Spread, takes center stage for bullish market conditions. This tactic is rooted in the desire to protect and strategically manage one’s investment, eliminating the element of gambling. By knowing the predetermined maximum profit and potential loss before entering a trade, you transform trading from a gamble into a calculated business endeavor.
The term “bull” indicates a bullish market outlook, where you anticipate an uptrend. “Call” signifies engagement with call options – the quintessential instrument for riding a bullish wave. The term “spread” reveals that this strategy involves both buying and selling options. But what’s the rationale behind this approach?
Consider this: when you’re confident in an upward market movement, you buy call options. Conversely, when you predict a downward slide, selling call options comes into play. The essence of the Bull Call Spread revolves around buying an “at the money” call option, such as Nifty at 16,200, coupled with selling an “out of the money” call option.
This contrast in options serves a purpose – the bought call option safeguards against potential loss, while the sold call option generates income. The spread between the two options further minimizes risk, enhancing your trading strategy’s stability.
As exemplified earlier, the Bull Call Spread strategy comes into play when the market doesn’t reach the anticipated level, rendering an option “out of the money.”
Here’s how this tactic unfolds, assuming Nifty’s expected rise to 16,400 doesn’t materialize, the 16,400 call option is now considered “out of the money.” The strategy involves selling this “out of the money” option and buying the 16,200 “at the money” option or even an “in the money” option if preferred.
To grasp the mechanics and benefits of this strategy, let’s delve into the option chain. Picture the current market closure at 16,214. The nearest strike price to this spot, in this case, 16,200, qualifies as “at the money.” Similarly, the 16,400 option is “out of the money.” Let’s use these values for calculations.
Say the “at the money” 16,200 option is priced at 138, and the “out of the money” 16,400 option is priced at 60. By deducting the cost of the sold option (60) from the bought option (138), we arrive at 78 (per lot) – this is the cost incurred.
Now, calculating the potential outcomes: subtracting the cost (78) from the difference between the two strike prices (200) gives us 122. This 122 (per lot) represents the maximum profit. Conversely, the cost of the spread (78) becomes the maximum loss.
To discern the breakeven point, which is where the market’s movement neither yields profit nor loss, simply add the cost (78) to the initial spot (16,200). This results in a breakeven point of 16,278.
Understanding strategies like the Bull Call Spread is pivotal to both managing risk and maximizing potential gains. Through a logical breakdown, it’s evident how this strategy curtails potential losses, transforming trading from a gamble into a calculated venture.
For instance, if one had merely bought the call option without employing the Bull Call Spread strategy, the potential maximum loss would have been the full premium paid, translating to a substantial sum of ₹6,900. However, by adopting the Bull Call Spread strategy, the maximum loss is reined in to ₹3,900. This tactical approach ensures that the entire trading capital isn’t eroded, reinforcing the value of strategic calculation over heedless speculation.
Intriguingly, this approach extends beyond mere theory. Utilizing platforms like Sensibull, traders can not only comprehend the mechanics but also visualize potential outcomes. Through the Bull Call Spread setup on Sensibull, one can clearly perceive the trade-off between maximum profit and maximum loss. By inputting relevant data, such as strike prices and premium values, traders can gauge their potential gains and losses, transforming the strategy from an abstract concept into a tangible tool.
As seen in the example, with the Nifty resting at 16,214, the 16,200 option boasts a last traded price of 177.35, while the out-of-the-money 16,000 option stands at 96.65.
Calculating the cost of the Bear Put Spread necessitates subtracting the premium received (96) from the premium paid (177), yielding 81. With a lot size of 50, the cost is 4050 rupees. In contrast, the maximum profit entails calculating the difference between the strike prices (200) and subtracting the cost (81), totaling 119. With the same lot size, this translates to a potential maximum profit of 5950 rupees. This calculated approach safeguards against potential losses, fortifying your position.
Looking further, the breakeven point is determined by deducting the cost (81) from the spot price (16,200), arriving at 16,119. This threshold delineates the point where the trade ceases to incur a loss or accrue a profit, a crucial aspect for decision-making.
The short straddle strategy unveils itself as a potent option for traders who anticipate a range-bound market. Consider a scenario where the market is projected to oscillate between 16,000 and 16,400, exemplifying the essence of sideways movement. To align with this, the short straddle strategy is employed.
When the term “short” graces a strategy’s nomenclature, it implies a selling approach. Likewise, “straddle” signifies a two-fold movement involving both call and put options. Crucially, short straddles are positioned at the money, precisely where the market currently resides.
In a practical example, envisage the Nifty resting at 16,200. The corresponding call and put options for 16,200 possess premiums of 138 and 177, respectively. By selling both these options, traders construct a range within which their position proves lucrative. This range extends from 16,200 minus the total premium (177+138), equating to 15885, to 16,200 plus the total premium, culminating at 16,515.
In this scenario, the short straddle boasts a maximum profit of 315 points, or 15,750 rupees (calculated at a lot size of 50). However, the caveat surfaces with the potential for unlimited loss if the market veers dramatically beyond the straddle range.
To mitigate this risk, the straddle’s break-even points come into play. By adding the total premium (315) to the current market price (16,200), the upper break-even point of 16,515 emerges. Conversely, subtracting the total premium from the market price, the lower break-even point of 15,885 manifests. This range encapsulates the profitable territory for this strategy.
The Iron Butterfly strategy emerges as a safeguarded evolution of the short straddle, catering to traders who expect a relatively stable market. This strategy adds insurance to the short straddle’s range-bound approach.
In the short straddle, traders sell both call and put options at the at-the-money strike price, essentially constructing a range within which profits are plausible. However, the caveat is that if the market dramatically exceeds this range, potential losses could be unlimited. The Iron Butterfly strategy remedies this potential hazard by adding “wings” to the strategy.
To elaborate, within the Iron Butterfly, traders sell both call and put options at the at-the-money strike price, as in the short straddle. Yet, they proceed to buy out-of-the-money options on both ends. These options act as insurance, shielding traders from the risk of unlimited loss. Specifically, out-of-the-money call and put options are bought, anticipating potential market surges beyond the constructed range. By doing so, traders cap their potential loss, making the strategy more secure.
For example, if the market surges above the upper strike price of the sold call option or dives below the lower strike price of the sold put option, the unlimited loss is prevented by the out-of-the-money options that were bought. This aspect of the strategy mitigates the anxiety associated with unlimited loss, providing a cushion to traders’ positions.
Executing an Iron Butterfly involves both credit and debit components. The premium paid for the out-of-the-money options constitutes a debit, while the premium earned from selling the at-the-money options acts as credit. The difference between these amounts shapes the potential profit and loss.
In practice, consider selling a call option at 16,200 (at-the-money), and then buying a call option at 16,400 (out-of-the-money). Similarly, sell a put option at 16,200 and buy a put option at 16,000. The debit involved in purchasing the out-of-the-money options serves as an insurance cost against potential unlimited losses.
The long straddle strategy is a versatile tool used in uncertain market scenarios where the direction of movement is unclear. This approach capitalizes on market volatility and benefits from substantial price swings, whether upwards or downwards.
Within the long straddle, traders buy both call and put options at the at-the-money strike price. This enables them to take advantage of price movements, regardless of whether they are bullish or bearish. The underlying assumption here is that the market’s movement will be pronounced enough to generate profits that outweigh the initial investment.
For instance, if the market stands at 16,200, the long straddle involves purchasing both a call option at 16,200 and a put option at the same strike price. The strategy thrives when the market experiences substantial fluctuations, as the combined profits from either the call or the put option counterbalance the loss in the other.
However, there are a few aspects to be mindful of while executing a long straddle. The strategy involves paying a premium for both the call and put options, which translates to an initial investment. Furthermore, due to the passage of time, the value of options might erode, potentially leading to losses if the anticipated price movement doesn’t occur.
Nonetheless, the risk-reward dynamics of the long straddle are intriguing. The maximum loss is limited to the initial investment, i.e., the combined premium paid for the call and put options. On the other hand, the potential for unlimited profit exists, particularly if the market experiences a substantial surge or drop beyond the strike price.
While the strategy allows traders to capture profits regardless of market direction, it’s essential to consider the implied volatility and timing. High implied volatility increases the chances of the market movement covering the premium cost, thereby enhancing the probability of profit.
Sensible, a user-friendly platform for options trading, offers an efficient means to strategize and execute the long straddle. In the context of event-based trading, where market uncertainty prevails, the long straddle proves to be an adept approach.
In conclusion, when trading options, it’s imperative to align your strategies with your available capital and risk tolerance. For instance, if you possess 50,000 rupees, stick to trading only one lot. Attempting to trade multiple lots with such limited capital could lead to significant losses within a single day. Always aim for consistency and safety of capital. As you progress and achieve profitability over time, consider increasing your lot sizes cautiously.
A vital principle to remember is not to hold Nifty index weekly options for more than two days. Theta decay can erode your capital rapidly, especially if you’re holding bought options. It’s advisable to carry forward hedge positions such as spreads – for example, bull call or bear put spreads – if you’re aiming to maximize gains.
The overarching objective here is to safeguard your capital and maintain consistent trading practices. Always adhere to the wisdom of Warren Buffett, who emphasizes the importance of not losing money. Approach options trading as a regular business endeavor, avoiding speculative behaviors that resemble gambling.
Through these principles and following the strategies outlined in this blog, you can establish a well-structured and informed approach to options trading. If you found this blog helpful, consider sharing it with others who might benefit from this knowledge.
Open Free Demat Account