A case study in how the options market reacts to breaking news
We've written a lot lately about how traders buying and selling options seem to be driving Apple's (AAPL) share price (see here, here and here.) So we thought it might be instructive to look at what happened on a day when Apple's share price took over and drove the options market -- specifically, the so-called Max Pain price point MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - May 23, 2011 9:00 AM ET
New evidence suggests that since last summer the tail has been wagging the dog
If you're any kind of Apple (AAPL) investor, you should be aware of the chart at right, even if you don't know a put from a call and don't really care to.
It shows the value in millions of dollars as of Wednesday morning of the outstanding Apple options that expire this Friday, with the magenta bars representing MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - May 18, 2011 7:36 AM ET
If you're looking for evidence of manipulation, Friday's close was picture-perfect
"The easiest way to think of options," wrote The Market Skeptics's Eric deCarbonnel in a prescient 2009 post, "is as a type of insurance. Investors pay a premium to protect themselves against sharp swings in the market. If these sharp swings don't happen, those selling options (option market makers) keep the premiums as profit."
"In a legitimate free market," he continues, "every MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - May 15, 2011 9:32 AM ET
There's something very fishy about the weekly options market. Is it time to reel in the bad guys?
It was 3:48 p.m. on Friday April 29 and traders who had purchased Apple (AAPL) April 29 $350 "calls" -- options that gave them the right to buy Apple shares in blocks of 100 for $350 per share -- were sitting pretty. The stock was trading around $353.50 and those calls were worth MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - May 12, 2011 1:00 PM ET
Trading in the company's shares Monday was slower than it's been since New Year's Eve, 2010
Apple (AAPL) has been trading in a narrow band this year -- to the undying frustration of investors who think the stock's price ought to reflect the company's breakneck earnings growth (EPS up 75%, 68%, 75% and 92%, respectively, over the past four quarters).
Apple's trading volume, by contrast, is as changeable as a baby's bottom, MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - May 10, 2011 8:09 AM ET
Serving as a lightning rod for activist shareholders has its rewards
Al Gore took his lumps at Apple's (AAPL) shareholders meeting Thursday.
Sitting in the front row with the other outside directors, he had to bite his tongue as two pro-environment proposals were voted down and a gadfly named Shelton Ehrlich took the mic to call him a "laughingstock."
"The glaciers have not melted," Ehrlich said, referring to Gore's frequent warnings about the MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Feb 27, 2010 1:13 PM ET
It may come as some consolation to the investors who lost their shirts as Apple (AAPL) shares collapsed over the past month that nobody lost more, at least on paper, than its CEO.
As the company's largest individual stockholder, with 5,546,451 shares directly owned, Steve Jobs (were he paying attention) could have watched the value of his holdings drop from $1.126 billion just before Christmas to $771 million at Wednesday's close, MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Jan 24, 2008 7:58 AM ET
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