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2012 Options Trading Profit Guide

Tips, tools & advice to turbocharge your trading profits

By OptionsZone Experts

Take Your Trading to the Next Level!

what you need to know

Whether you’re brand new to options trading or just need to brush up on your skills, this options trading education guide will get you up to speed and ready to trade in no time: 

Advantages of Options Trading
Covered Calls
Writing (Selling) Options
Spread Trading Strategies
Exiting an Options Trade
Options Expiration
Options Volatility
Option Greeks
Naked Options
Exotic Options
Cheap Options Strategies

Next: Advantages of Options Trading 

Advantages of Options Trading

good news

Top 7 Reasons to Trade Options
Affordability and flexibility are among the reasons.

10 Secrets of Successful Options Traders
Ever wonder what your fellow traders are doing, and how and why they’re doing it? We conducted a survey of 1,166 options traders, and it revealed some very interesting results. Read more >> 

Test Your Options IQ
Think you’re smarter than the average options trader? Find out here. Read more >> 

Costly Options Trading Mistakes to Avoid
Even professional traders have taken a lot of lumps in their careers, so let’s review some of the most common (and costly) options trading mistakes. Read more >> 

10 Busted Myths of Options Trading
We picked the brains of the CEOs from the top options trading firms and uncovered 10 options trading myths. Read more >> 

5 Advantages of Trading Weekly Options
Weekly options, which are listed on Thursdays and expire the following Friday, are meant to offer a cost-effective way to trade around events in a specific time frame. Read more >>

Next: Covered Calls 

Covered Calls


What is Covered Call Writing?
Learn exactly how to go about executing this popular strategy. Read more >> 

The Advantages of Covered Calls
Covered calls are a great way to limit your liability as an option writer and hedge risk on your stock holdings. Read more >> 

12 Tips for Writing Covered Calls
Many traders think writing options (i.e., covered calls) is an easy way to generate cash. But there’s more to it than meets the eye. Read more >> 

Naked Puts: An Alternative to Covered Calls
Put writing can be less risky and offer more profit potential than writing covered calls. Here’s what you need to know. Read more >>

Next: Writing (Selling) Options 

Writing (Selling) Options

buy sell

4 Benefits of Selling Options
When you buy options, you have to be right about market direction and about the amount of time it will take the market to move. But did you know that it’s possible to be on the other side of the trade? Read more >> 

Put and Call Writing Explained
Learn the basics of put writing and call writing. Read more >> 

Selling Puts vs. Covered Calls — Which is Better?
Many investors are surprised to learn that the benefits of covered calls can be had without increasing risk by selling short or naked puts. Read more >> 

7 Tips for Mastering Put Selling
Selling put options can provide consistent profits or allow you to buy stocks at a discount. Here are a few pointers to help you hone your put selling skills. Read more >> 

Next: Spread Trading Strategies 

Spread Trading Strategies


7 Spread Trading Strategies for Bigger Option Profits
Some of the biggest option profits can be made from spread trading. Here are seven strategies to get you started. Read more >> 

Use Straddles When You’re Not Sure
These spreads can help you get in the game even when you don’t have a clue about which direction the market is heading next. Read more >> 

Next: Exiting an Options Trade 

Exiting an Options Trade


8 Tips for Exiting an Options Trade
Knowing when to exit an options trade is the most difficult part of trading. Get it right with this 8-part strategy. Read more >> 

When to Exercise an Option
When you buy an option, you get the right to exercise that option, so it’s important to know when it makes sense (and money) to take advantage of that right. Read more >>  

Next: Options Expiration 

Options Expiration

expiration day

Options Expiration Day Traps to Avoid
Take the following steps to avoid any unpleasant surprises on expiration day. Read more >>

8 Tips for Managing Expiring Options Positions
Even the best traders can be maddened by expiration Friday. Here’s what you need to know. Read more >> 

5 Things to Watch Going Into Expiration
There are certain situations that can amplify or crush the value of your positions. Pay special attention to these five things as expiration Friday approaches. Read more >> 

7 Reasons Not to Fear a Quadruple Witching
A quadruple witching expiration is nothing to be afraid of. And to prove it, I’ll answer some common questions about this witch of a day. Read more >>  

Next: Options Volatility 

Options Volatility


How Implied Volatility Affects Options Traders
When used correctly, implied volatility can control your risk and help you make smarter trades by getting a better read on market behavior. Read more >> 

Using Implied Volatility to Select the Right Option
Use implied volatility to determine whether an option’s premium is overpriced or undervalued. Read more >> 

Do You Know How to Trade the VIX?
If you’re looking to trade volatility, check out our primer on the VIX products. Read more >>  

Next: Option Greeks 

Option Greeks

greek alphabet

Option Greeks: Delta, Gamma, Theta and Vega
The world of options is dominated by four mathematical variables: delta, gamma, theta and vega. Collectively they are known as “the Greeks.” And taken together, they can provide a trader with a comprehensive risk analysis in a single glance. Quite simply, if you want to trade options, then you have to master the Greeks. Read more >>

Next: Naked Options 

Naked Options

dirty laundry

11 Secrets of Naked Option Writing
While covered options writing (“covering” your option writing risk by owning the underlying stock) is a conservative strategy that offers only part of the benefit of options writing, naked options writing (selling options without the stock covering your position) allows you to reap all of the benefits and profit potential option writing has to offer. Here’s what you need to know before you get naked. Read more >> 

Next: Exotic Options 

Exotic Options


Can You Handle ‘Exotic’ Options?
If you haven’t heard of exotic options, you’re not alone. They definitely aren’t as well known as regular options, or even as some common and complex trading strategies like strangles and straddles. To help you learn more about the world of exotic options, let’s take a little pop quiz. By the time you uncover the answers to these questions, I guarantee you’ll think of the term “exotic” in a whole new way. Take our ‘exotic’ pop quiz now. Read more >> 

Next: Cheap Options Strategies 

Cheap Options Strategies


The 5 Cheapest Options Strategies
Due to options’ short life span, option portfolios tend to have a much higher degree of trading activity than stock portfolios. This means that options traders must be very aware of commission costs, which can add up quickly, eating away at your bottom line. Here are the five options strategies that incur the lowest commission costs. Read more >> 

See the complete Cheap Options Strategies archive here.

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