Trading Desk: Another Perfect Trade

Every so often, we buy low and are almost instantly rewarded with a chance to sell our holdings back again at a gratifyingly higher level. This time, my High Octane Traders reaped the rewards: 47% in profit in less than 24 hours.

And we did it when buy-and-hold investors were grinding their teeth. Yes, we bought puts on mighty Alphabet (GOOG) on Tuesday afternoon, when the underlying stock had recovered from an initial post-earnings malaise.

GOOG simply seemed to be having too much trouble clearing $108, despite all the bulls’ best intentions. After all, the numbers were OK but nothing spectacular or thrilling.

And we’d already seen that once the buzz faded, the stock could easily fall to $102. There just wasn’t a lot of support in between beyond hot air . . . especially when the artificial intelligence narrative that tantalized investors was also getting extremely crowded.

With that in mind, $110 puts made sense. We managed to get them for under $6, which implied that Wall Street itself thought it was dubious that the stock would be able to hold $104 in the next 5-6 weeks.

It took about 18 hours. On Wednesday morning, Alphabet’s hold on the artificial intelligence market was seriously challenged and suddenly GOOG collapsed below $100.

The right to sell the stock at $110 suddenly became worth a lot more than $6. We found buyers for closer to $9 . . . and took the money.

I’d just like to linger on the “teachable moment” here. First, you can make money even when a stock is going nowhere special or in active decline. A lot of money.

Second, options magnify the percentage impact of every bump and pivot the underlying stock makes. GOOG barely dropped 9% overnight. We made 47%, or more than 5X as much as the stock itself moved.

And third, it takes the S&P 500 roughly a five-year period to rack up that kind of score, statistically speaking. We did it in a day, leaving the other four years, eleven months and spare change to do it again . . . and again . . . and again.

That’s just how this works. If you’d like to learn more about the fundamentals, I just published our recent track record (not including GOOG, obviously . . . too recent) HERE.