Covered Puts: An Alternative To Buy and Hold

Noah Kiedrowski - Contributor - Biotech - Covered Puts


Options can provide an alternative approach to the traditional buy and hold for the long-term strategy. Options can add value to one’s portfolio in a variety of ways, specifically, maintaining liquidity via maintaining cash to engage in covered put options, initiating positions via being assigned shares strategically prior to or upon expiration of the option contract and capturing premium income via closing out the contract prior to expiration as the shares move in your favor to realize income. Here, I’ll discuss these three different scenarios and strategies behind each one with real life examples.

Maintaining Liquidity and Capturing Premium Income

Maintaining liquidity is integral to any portfolio as cash can be deployed in opportunistic scenarios to capitalize on sell-offs or adding to a long position that has corrected to lower cost basis. Covered puts can be implemented as a means to leverage cash on hand to sell contracts that are covered by cash. This cash would be deployed in an effort to maintain this cash balance yet be put to work via an option contract. This cash reserve can be utilized for selling covered puts thus not purchasing the underlying security with the end goal of never being assigned shares and netting premium income in the process. Once the contract expires, the covered cash allocated to the contract will be freed in addition to the cash that was realized from the option premium at expiration. This scenario will allow cash reserves to be maintained while adding cash via covered put contracts. Continue reading "Covered Puts: An Alternative To Buy and Hold"

IBM - Blockchain Technology Driving Growth

Noah Kiedrowski - Contributor - Biotech - Blockchain

“What the internet did for communications, blockchain will do for trusted transactions.”
— Ginni Rometty, IBM Chief Executive Officer


International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) has struggled in recent years to transition away from its dependency on legacy businesses to the future of cloud, artificial intelligence, and analytics. Despite this long transition of posting 20+ consecutive quarters of declining revenue, IBM has finally posted its first revenue growth in nearly six years. Its long-term imperatives are beginning to bear fruit in emerging high-value segments that has fundamentally changed its business mix while evolving its offerings to align with new age information technology demands. New talent has driven these long-term business initiatives in these key areas as ~50% of its employee base has been added to the company within the last five years. A new frontier of growth lies in the nascent blockchain technology as IBM is a first mover in this promising, emerging technology. As IBM transitions to quarterly revenue growth, per the recent guidance of low single-digit growth, in the backdrop of its evolution to emerging high-value segments (i.e., blockchain) the company presents a compelling investment opportunity. In addition to the evolving business mix, IBM offers a great dividend, share buyback program while continuously acquiring companies to drive the business into the future.

Blockchain Technology and Applications

Blockchain technology is the architecture that underpins the volatile cryptocurrency markets. This technology applies to enterprise applications since it employs a decentralized database, open ledger, and incorruptible transactional capabilities. Blockchain applies to any transactional business model whether it’s financial or goods being transacted. The open ledger concept within the blockchain makes it incorruptible as any changes need confirmation from multiple parties and any changes can be seen at any time with a permission blockchain. As a function of the decentralization, there’s no central repository or clearinghouse to be hacked or accessed. The blockchain speeds up and by-passes these intermediaries (i.e., a clearinghouse of the bank) to achieve transactions within minutes and not days (Figures 1 and 2). Continue reading "IBM - Blockchain Technology Driving Growth"

Immunotherapy ETF Heats Up

Noah Kiedrowski - Contributor - Biotech - Immunotherapy

Immunotherapy Heats Up

The Immunotherapy space has ushered in a new class of therapies to combat a variety of diseases, most notably cancer. Immunotherapy has been emerging from the backdrop of oncology research for years most notably from smaller companies such as Dendreon, Kite Pharma and Juno Therapeutics as leaders in the space. Dendreon was first-to-market with its activated cellular therapy, Provenge® in 2010 followed by a 7-year gap until Novartis’ Kymriah® was approved in August of 2017 which was shortly followed up by the approval of Kite Pharma’s Yescata® in November of 2017.

Now, immunotherapy is at the forefront in oncology as a leading therapeutic which has been shown to cure cancer in previously untreatable patients. Immunotherapy ushers in a new class of promising therapies by harnessing the body’s immune system to recognize and eradicate debilitating diseases, specifically cancer. Immunotherapy has been shown to have a favorable side effect profile and best-in-class efficacy across many different disease states. These therapies may provide a powerful technology to contend with a host of diseases, and in a future state, may potentially serve as a preventative technology similar to a traditional vaccine. Immunotherapy has evolved into many different classifications with differing modalities over the past several years, which has given rise to a growing number mid and small-cap biotechnology companies. In late 2015, The Loncar Cancer Immunotherapy ETF (NASDAQ:CNCR) and provides investors with an opportunity to invest in this unique cohort.

Immunotherapy – The Science

Generally speaking, cancer is immuno-tolerant, meaning these cancerous cells evade the surveillance mechanisms of the immune system and thus persist, proliferate and manifest disease within the host. The immune system cannot distinguish cancerous cells from normal host cells thus giving rise to malignancy and metastasis. Continue reading "Immunotherapy ETF Heats Up"

Hasbro: Positive Earnings and Growth Ahead

Noah Kiedrowski - Contributor - Biotech - Hasbro Inc.

Introduction and Backdrop:

Hasbro Inc. (NASDAQ:HAS) just released earnings, and the stock shot up from $94 to $103 or 9.5% as a result of navigating the challenging retail landscape and positive commentary on the conference call for future growth avenues. In mid-summer of 2017, Hasbro had witnessed a two-leg sell-off from its 52-week high of $116 to $88 or a 24% slide. The first leg down was from $116 to $95 followed by a second leg down from $95 to $88. These sell-offs were primarily due to retail softness and lowered guidance due to the Toys R Us bankruptcy filing which drove the stock down to $88. Hasbro was faced with a challenging environment and had to lower its guidance through the holiday season. The stock has been trading erratically since mid-summer of 2017 with 10% swings in the stock price. Ostensibly, Hasbro looks to be turning the corner and effectively managing this challenging backdrop and forging ahead with many current and future growth catalysts.

Hasbro has many current and future growth catalysts with major movie franchises, specifically with Marvel and Star Wars. Thor: Ragnarok and Star Wars: The Last Jedi rounded out 2017, posting worldwide box office gross of $854 million and $1.33 billion, respectively. Black Panther posted record-breaking numbers in its debut with $235 million domestic opening at the box office over the Presidents Day weekend. Upcoming Marvel and Star Wars movies include Avengers: Infinity War, Star Wars Han Solo and Ant-Man and The Wasp to highlight a few major films. Taking into account Hasbro’s growth, the potential acquisition of Mattel, Q1-Q2 2018 catalysts, trading at a P/E of ~20, boasting a 2.4% dividend yield and initiatives within Hasbro Studios to propel growth further presents a compelling long-term buy. Continue reading "Hasbro: Positive Earnings and Growth Ahead"

Disney: Black Panther Setting The Pace

Noah Kiedrowski - Contributor - Biotech

Setting The Pace and FY2018:

The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) is fresh off reporting its first quarter for FY2018 and has set the stage for a strong year ahead. The studio segment is off to a great start with record-breaking movie releases such as Thor: Ragnarok, Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Coco surpassing $854 million, $1.33 billion and $715 million in worldwide box office receipts, respectively. Black Panther entered the fray with a record-breaking President’s Day weekend opening of $185 million in domestic box office sales. Disney has one of its biggest movie slates for FY2018 with Ant Man and The Wasp, The Avengers: Infinity War, Solo: A Star Wars Story, The Incredibles 2 and Mulan (live-action film) around the corner. Parks and Resorts are posting strong growth where revenues grew 13% year-over-year in Q1, and operating income now surpasses its Media Networks segment income, bringing in $1.35 billion vs. $1.19 billion, respectively. Disney is aggressively trying to shore up its stalling Media Networks segment with a confluence of growth catalysts via streaming with Hulu (30% stake and will likely be expanded to a majority 60% stake after the Fox acquisition), BAMTech, Sling, ESPN streaming service and a Disney branded service coming in 2019. Disney is evolving to address the deteriorating Media Networks business segment with major streaming initiatives. Disney offers a compelling long-term investment opportunity considering the growth, Fox acquisition, pipeline, Media Networks remediation plan, diversity of its portfolio, tax reform, share repurchase program and dividend growth.
Continue reading "Disney: Black Panther Setting The Pace"