The Stock Repair Strategy

Today's Guest Blogger is Dan Passarelli of Market Taker Mentoring. Dan is an options guru with more than 17 years experience in the options industry. He has worked as both a floor trader and an options instructor. Today Dan is going to share his insight on the "stock repair strategy." What are some tricks you use to leverage risk in trades? Be sure to comment below and visit Dan at Market Taker Mentoring.


It’s been a rough ride for a lot of investors. Some investors are waiting (patiently) for the market to turn around. Some traders are buying at the new, cheaper prices. But as experienced investors know, the market can always go lower—sometimes fast and furiously. There is one more alternative that can make sense in some cases: the stock repair strategy.

Introduction to the Stock Repair Strategy: Continue reading "The Stock Repair Strategy"

Triple Witching and Option Trading

Today's guest blogger is Dan Passarelli the founder of Market Taker Mentoring and the author of the book Trading Option Greeks.


Like the ’60s icon Donovan once declared, “Must be the season of the witch.” In option trading, the season of the witch comes four times a year, and it is almost upon us. The term “triple witching” was originally used to describe the day that index options, equity options and index futures all commenced trading in their expiring contracts. Though some of the major index options now stop trading on the Thursday before expiration, the third Friday of the month ending each quarter is still a day of note for option traders.

The “witchiness” of this day stems from the fact that option volume and the volume of the underlying stocks tend to be higher on that day, which sometimes leads to unexpected, magnified price swings. This could mean more risk.

But this witch needn’t necessarily be feared, shunned or burned at the stake. While this anomaly makes many traders and investors a bit nervous, a solid understanding of the phenomenon can make you a better, more successful trader.

A lot of traders, especially professionals who have been in the game a long time, like to go into expiration “flat the strike.” That means they generally like to close out the at- and near-the-money options about to go off the board. If a trader is long near-the-money options, he’ll sell them to get to zero contracts. If a trader is short near-the-moneys, he’ll buy them. Getting rid of expiring long options avoids the higher risk of accelerated theta that comes with expiration. Closing out short options avoids pin risk, or the risk of not knowing whether or how many options will be assigned.

All this option trading can be accompanied by greater volume in the underlying stock as professional (i.e., delta neutral) traders also close out their hedges by buying or selling stock. Depending on which way the liquidity providers were positioned in the options (long or short, calls or puts), this spike in stock volume may cause upward or downward pressure.

Understanding triple witching and being prepared for its implications should be part of traders’ strategy going into the quarterly expiration. Simply appreciating the fact that the underlying security can have these moves and knowing why gives traders the opportunity to adjust their trading plan for that day to factor in a potential “surprise” move.


Passarelli started his trading career on the floor of the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) as an equity options market maker. He also traded agricultural options and futures on the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT). In 2005, Passarelli joined CBOE Options Institute and began teaching both basic and advanced trading concepts. Be sure to visit Dan's Blog Trading Option Greeks and site Market Taker Mentoring