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Trading WalMart ongoing

So far this year, our profit on the WalMart trade is up about $400. We have an open option position, so it changes all the time. The current plan is to let the short options expire this week, as we are not close to being ITM (in the money). We've placed a GTC (good till canceled) order to buy them back at 5 cents, which is commission-free at our broker, ThinkOrSwim. If WMT should drop back to our strike tomorrow or Thursday, we will immediately cancel the GTC order and place a new order to roll the options out to next week. We are looking for consistent cash flow, not ...

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Trade Updates

XLP vertical spread = We increased it to 5 contracts of the Feb 50/48 put vertical and during the market drop, we added another contract at 49/47. The entire 6 contract position is now right at break-even with 28 days to expiration. It looks to be perfectly positioned. Margin required is $1200 in an IRA at ThinkOrSwim. WMT  = Our trade string since Jan 1 is now up $145. We are short three 61.5 puts expiring today (we will let them expire) and short three 63 puts expiring in one week. The time decay for next week's contracts is $15/day. We plan to manage this next week ...

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Jan 20 <> Down 400 again…….

In my options portfolio, I track the available cash by subtracting the value of all the short puts (as if they were exercised - because they might be) from my cash. Today, that leaves me about 25% in cash. I don't want to go any lower, so I will only be selling premium (calls) against the portfolio until cash is back closer to 50%. I never use margin, I'm not smart enough for that. My account value is down about 5% since Jan 1, while the S&P is down 9.4%. If I was a mutual fund I would run an advertisement trying to convince you that is good performance. I'm not ...

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One-tenth of one percent a day

.....in new cash. That is the goal of my options portfolio, which is run like a very tiny insurance company. I get paid to accept a defined amount of risk for a defined period of time, exactly like State Farm. Learn to run your portfolio properly, and it will be a small business with cash flow. You do not have to predict the future, just manage it. Today, the market is down again. Nothing new and I don't care. I care about just one thing - Can I create my cash flow goal for the day? I'm 2/3 of the way there and working on rolling a Facebook option position. That roll is ...

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Jan 15. Down 500.

Years ago I resisted the Dot Com stock boom. I knew that stocks were being valued in crazy ways, I knew it had no fundamental basis. Eventually, I joined the party and played the game. I lost a whole lot of money and suffered an extended medical depression. The mental anguish was absolutely terrible. At one point, a person who was helping me through it all told me that he thought I would trade again. It took me a long time to get back in the waters, but I did - with a horrifically painful lesson learned. That lesson? :: Markets can move farther and faster than you ever ...

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Jan 13

After closing the WalMart puts for 5 cents, we waited until a day when WMT was down 1%. We got it Tue and Wed and have a new position that is short three 63 puts, expiring Friday. This position needs to be rolled now, on Thursday morning. We have placed an order to roll this out for one week at 48 cents and subscribers will be getting the price adjustments as we click them lower during the day. We like to try and roll weekly options on Thursday so we avoid getting pushed into the last few hours of a contract. The market makers know that you want/need to roll on that last ...

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XLP, WMT, Jan 12

XLP was mostly unchanged today, so we did not try to add to this position. The 4 contracts in our small portfolio (under $4k account) are starting to earn a little profit. This is exactly what we expect for a vertical that is about 5 weeks from expiration. We are waiting patiently for time decay to work it's magic on this position. Patience Produces Profits. Our short WMT puts were expiring in a few days. We placed an order to close them at 5 cents, and it was filled. Entering a closing option order at 5 cents or less is commission-free at ThinkOrSwim. We originally ...

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1/3 chance

Today the market was weak again for most of the day. We took advantage of that weakness to increase our short cash covered put vertical on XLP. We sold another single contract spread, so our position is now "short four XLP 50/48 Feb Put Verticals". We have sold them at an average price of .675 and the price to buy the vertical back is now at .625. The position has begun to go profitable as time decay increases a little bit every day. If XLP is weak again tomorrow, we would place orders to increase it to 5 contracts. The trade is working and XLP continues to remain at the ...

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End of the week Jan 8

Our WalMart (WMT) trade worked well this week. We sold cash secured naked puts at an average price of 45 cents and they expired. We kept the entire profit on our 3 contracts, or $131 after commissions/fees. This is the best possible result for a weekly trade. It does not often happen so don't assume that you can do this week after week. Most trades need adjustments and rolling forward (more time) to work out profitably. Trading options is work that requires planning and patience. It is not gambling! We will watch WMT for a day when it is down at least 1% and then sell ...

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The small portfolio

I have an IRA account with about $3400 in it. Many of the trades here at DPO require a six-figure account. We understand that many people need to learn the business of options in little steps. If you want to develop your skills properly - one small step at a time - then please start small. I'm using this IRA for our Small Portfolio.  We have analyzed XLP, which is the Select Sector SPDR Consumer Staples ETF. It is traded in very large volume and has enough option open interest for our purposes. It has the strongest relative strength of the major SPDR funds and that's ...

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