Live: Monday, Nov. 4, 2019

9:25 a.m. New York time

Things  begin to get interesting this week after the customary doldrums between options series. I exited all of my positions in the November monthlies 21 days before expiration, and on Tuesday I shall enter the December monthlies, 45 days before they expire on December 20.

At this point I’m fighting a huge compulsion to start singing “Circle of Life” from The Lion King, the film I watched on my flight home from Japan last week. (Great film — I fell asleep in the middle and logged three full hours.)

It’s the circle of life
And it moves us all
Through despair and hope
Through faith and love
‘Til we find our place
On the path unwinding
In the circle
The circle of life

What better description of the life of an options trader? We’re tightly bound to the options cycles.

We are circling through a time of low implied volatility, and so my choices for the next cycle’s short iron condor options plays are limited: SLV at the top of the list, followed by the gold series (GDX, GDXJ or GLD), long-term federal bonds (TLT), consumer discretionary (XLY) and energy (XOP or USO). Other prospects have an implied volatility rank (IVR) under 25%, to low for an attractive trade using the iron condor strategy. So, five positions, if I treat silver differently from gold.

Slim pickins, but so it goes.

In the meantime, I’ve spent the idle hours working on momentum shares portfolio, perfecting the rules, which can be seen here in the section headlined, “Mid-risk: Momentum Trades of Shares”. Entry relies on a modification of the Zacks Momentum screening. The exit rules, as always, have been the most challenging. At present I’m relying on the Fisher Transform on a monthly chart.

My present holdings: ANIK, BDSI, CROX, EURN, FRO, NTRA, RNG, SBLK, SSD and STRL.

By Tim Bovee, Portland, Oregon, November 4, 2019


Tim Bovee, Private Trader tracks the analysis and trades of a private trader for his own accounts. Nothing in this blog constitutes a recommendation to buy or sell stocks, options or any other financial instrument. The only purpose of this blog is to provide education and entertainment.

No trader is ever 100 percent successful in his or her trades. Trading in the stock and option markets is risky and uncertain. Each trader must make trading decisions for his or her own account, and take responsibility for the consequences.

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