Limited Time Offer – Option to Profit Electronic Version

The Option to Profit book is available as a PDF file for a limited time at a reduced price.

Why for a limited time? Because my rights to it go away in a couple of months and I want to milk it for all I can, just like with my stocks.

Option to Profit



  • Plus tax, where applicable.
  • $4.99 from January 1 – 15, 2017
  • Price increases to $5.99 January 16-31, 2017
  • Price increases to $7.50 February 1 – March 31, 2017
  • Price Increases to $9.99 April 1, 2017

Keeping the Streak Alive

I think I know how Joe DiMaggio must have felt.

After having made at least one trade for the first 11 trading days of the year, I doubt that I can keep it going for another 45 days, but I can dream.

I was hoping to get some trades done this week, but for the most part that hope was tied to do something with some of the many positions set to expire this week as the January 2017 option cycle was getting ready to come to its end.

I was hoping not to really be faced with a deluge of trades on Friday, especially since I have to have my attention focused on a few of those positions that had calls sold upon them at strike prices well below their purchase prices.

What surprised me is that I actually parted with some money in order to keep the streak alive.

I also tied that money up until next week.

I wasn’t planning for either of those things to happen, but very little really goes according to script.

The market did almost nothing today, as the DJIA moved a little bit further away from the 20,000 level.

Even a Janet Yellen speech today did little to shake things up, as she spoke mostly in academic terms and there was little for anyone to understand and to then act upon. read more

What Comes Next?

The road ahead really is pretty unclear.

The stock market may have been expressing a little of the uncertainty that awaits as we get ready to see the proverbial rubber hit the road.

What may be coming clear to some is that the bluster may not have too much behind it.

Or maybe it will.

That’s the problem.

We are in such untested waters that it may be crazy to actually put anything at risk right now, especially as we still sit so close to all time highs.

As we await Inauguration Day and we will be back to having only a single President at a time, we may get to find out whether words will be finding their counterpart in actions.

What we know right now is that we probably shouldn’t have taken too many words with a literal meaning.

What we also know is that there may not be very much agreement between the President and the other elected officials across from him in the Capital.

Even ones in his own party. read more

The Evolution of Dude

Lola Gayle, STEAM Register We all know The Dude from The Big Lebowski. But did you know there’s a long history of the word “dude” that spans all the way back to the 1800s? In the 1880s, being called a dude was an insult of the highest order. That’s because dude was used to describe a… read more

Trading on Trump’s Twitter Tantrums

When Donald Trump this week gave his first press conference since winning the presidential election, he alternately lauded the press and shouted down reporters he didn’t like with jeers such as: “Fake news!” He slipped into stream-of-consciousness rants about everything from Chinese hackers to hidden cameras in hotel rooms “all over the place.” And he denounced… read more

Wouldn’t that be Great?

everydayIf only this picture was true.

At least when it came to trading.

So far, this year has been a trader’s dream come true.

I’ve made trades each and every trading day of the year, but the only problem has been that there is no trading on Saturday and Sunday.

On top of that, you’ve got those pesky holidays.

The past couple of years I welcomed some of those pesky holidays.

But for a really large part of the 2007 to 2014 period I was actually upset whenever there was a day off from trading.

It’s nice to feel that way again. read more

Small Victories

smallvictoriesIt may be too soon to call this a victory, but for the moment, I’ll take whatever I can.

In this case, the victory was waking up this morning an still having Monday’s share purchase of Whole Foods in the account.

Whole Foods was ex-dividend today for $0.14

But shares closed yesterday at $30.73, which meant that the $30.50 strikes could have been assigned early.

But it’s all about the math and the probability of what could still happen over the course of the days remaining on the option contract.

In this case, following the $30.73 close and then deducting that $0.14 dividend, Whole Food shares would then start being available to trade at $30.59

For the option holder, the question was would it be worth actually paying the $30.50 for shares in order to grab the $0.14 dividend or hoping that maybe there was still some juice in that option contract.

Of course, if the option holder decided to grab the dividend, not only would he have to pay the $30.50 for shares, but he would also take the risk of shares declining in value at the open. read more

Deal Me In

dealI don’t know what it is about 2017, but whatever it is, I want to be dealt in on it.

While a 1.3% increase YTD on the S&P 500 isn’t necessarily the kind of thing that legends are built upon, it’s far, far better than the first 10 days in 2016.

I don’t like to project very much, especially if that means counting and spending money that you don’t really have, but 2016 ended being up such a nice year when compared to the already good S&P p500 performance, that I am beginning to salivate about the prospects for 2017.

That’s probably not a really good idea.

What I especially like is that I’ve had a trade in each of the 6 trading days to date.

That’s a pattern that I would really love to continue.

Today’s early rollover of the Cliffs Natural Resources puts in the face of commodity strength is something that I hope to be doing a lot of, much as was the case with Marathon Oil in the latter half of 2016. read more

Spending Money

spending-moneyI wasn’t really expecting to spend much money this week.

What I really wanted was to replicate last week and to do that for the remaining 51 weeks of 2017.

Back in the days when I did initiate lots of new positions, if you go all the way back to 2015, it always seemed as if money was burning a hole in my pockets or that maybe I believed that cash was only good to wipe one’s butt.

That’s pretty far from the truth, but that’s what it looked like and that’s what it felt like, even though I know myself pretty well.

So no one was more surprised than me, after having toiled hard to raise cash reserves for about a year and finally getting to a point that I felt was good enough to be prepared for whatever awaited, that within 30 minutes of the opening bell I had already opened 2 new positions.

I’m still of the mindset that I would like to see my existing positions get used on a much more frequent and regular basis through the sale of calls, but I just couldn’t resist this morning. read more

It Really Shouldn’t Come As a Surprise

supriseThere’s really no reason to be surprised, but I woke up this morning realizing that earnings season has to be starting soon.

As if it ever really ended.

What really makes things different this quarter is that Alcoa, even though it has now been out of the DJIA for a little while, is no longer the official/unofficial start to earnings season.

The official start of earnings season honors went to JP Morgan after Alcoa left the DJIA, but Alcoa still came first.

No more.

This week, earnings start for real on Friday morning, with JP Morgan getting things started and Alcoa doesn’t announce  until a full 11 days later.

It’s a whole new world order.

 tweetI was greeted this fine snowy Sunday morning with a very nice Tweet.

What was also very nice was not having to write an article in a rush to meet an unclear deadline in order to get potentially time sensitive material posted.

Or, for that matter, writing it at all.

My response to the Tweet was that 300 of those articles was enough and so I then did what was the only seemingly natural thing. read more