What is the difference between options and futures?

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How are Stock Futures different from Stock Options? In stock options, the option buyer has the right and not the obligation, to buy or sell the underlying share. Risk-return profile is symmetric in case of single stock futures whereas in case of stock options payoff is asymmetric. Also, the price of stock futures is affected mainly by the prices of the underlying stock whereas in case of stock options, volatility of the underlying stock affect the price along with the prices of the underlying stock.

What are Stock Futures? How are Stock Futures priced? What are the opportunities offered by Stock Futures? How are Stock Futures settled? Can I square up my position?

When am I required to pay initial margin to my broker? Do I option stock trading future to pay mark-to-market margin? What are the profits and losses option stock trading future case of a Stock Futures position?

What is the market lot for Stock Futures? Why are the market lots different for different stocks? What are the different contract months available for trading? What is spread trading on BSE? As an investor, how do I start trading in Stock Option stock trading future What securities can I submit to the broker as collateral?

How does an investor, who has the underlying stock, use Stock Futures when he anticipates a short-term fall in stock price? How can an investor benefit from a predicted rise or predicted fall in the price of a stock? What is pair trading?

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Let me put a disclaimer out here from the start: Any attempt to have call options explained is not easy, and it normally takes a while it took me at least a week to fully grasp the concept of what a call option is, and what it represents. There are many different types of options out there, and each one would require its own website worth of information to grasp each individual concept.

That already sounds a little convoluted…see, I told you that it may take a few days to sink in. Think about it this way…if you were at a department store and you wanted to buy a DVD player that was on sale, but then you found out that the last one was sold before you had a chance to get to it, most stores will allow you to create a raincheck for that item. The whole point of buying call options is that you expect the price to rise in the relatively near future.

So if Corn is trading at For instance, as of this writing, with Corn trading at about Another HUGE benefit of buying call options is the fact that unlike buying the futures contract your risk is limited; with buying options, you can never lose more than your initial investment. So with our Corn call option example Once you buy the option, your risk is set, and you now have the right to buy one Corn contract stock at the If Corn were to have a major spike in price and shot up to For example, if you were to buy a call option on Corn with a strike price of So, buying a Corn call option with a But if Corn were to have a dramatic and quick spike in price, and it jumped up to Nonetheless, I hope this little diddy on call options explained has at least begun to bring some clarity to this detailed area of investing.

If you understand the effect that volatility has on the options market, you will understand how sometimes extraordinary profits can be pulled from trading commodity options with very little relative investment. When you trade options, you are basically trading volatility, nothing more, nothing less. Remember the option is only going to be as stable as the futures contract that the option represents. Volatility is basically reflected in the sharp rises and drops in option premiums, and the degree of fluctuation that those premiums experience.

If you use it right, volatility can be your best friend. Once you understand a little about market psychology, you can truly exploit volatility to create some serious profits in a relatively short period of time. Before I get sidetracked, let me mention the fact that there are two types of volatility in commodity options trading and really all options trading for that matter: In other words, how stable or unstable have market prices been throughout history?

The basic reason why it is important to understand volatility is because it will tell you what your best plan of action is, as far as what type of position to take in the markets.

In the realm of commodity options trading , you have to be prepared to face the uncertainties and volatility that the futures markets can throw at you. You have to keep in mind that options is simply a game of educated guesses. It is vital for you to make that distinction before even beginning to enter a trade. The options markets are inherently speculative. The whole drama of it is the big question mark about what the markets may or may not do. This is where you get volatility skews and parity in puts and calls.

This is why option writers pad their premiums the farther out in months the options go, because they realize that the farther the timeline extends, the more probability there is for uncontrollable events to affect market prices.

When this major drop in value happens, if you are wise, you will exit by offsetting your position instead of allowing your option to expire worthless. This is an integral part of money management, which is probably the number one requirement for a person to successfully engage in commodity options trading ; you have to conserve your trading capital and not try to be some super-hero, willing to hock your house on a lucky chance.

Occasionally, they will get blown out by sudden market spikes or sell-offs, but at the end of the day, it is an art to recognize a truly undervalued option, and then be able to properly capitalize on trading it. In this blog we will go into various commodity options trading strategies , and learn how to recognize these opportunities in the markets when they present themselves.

One thing is for sure; with every trade, no matter if you come out with a profit or exit with a loss, you learn something. You pick something up. This, my friend, is some of what it takes to cut the mustard in trading commodity options. Leverage truly is a two-edged sword.

You must treat it with respect, and never be presumptuous or arrogant about the markets, as if you can always predict their movements. I believe in using the widsom that God gave me to keep me from making a trading decision that would be thoroughly disatrous. I believe that taking a loss in trading commodity options can actually be part of a winning strategy. Live to trade commodity options another day.