How to Cheaply Trade Cash Secured Puts in a Retirement Account?

Trading Cash Secured Puts or Covered Writes, basically the same trade, is outrageously expensive in a retirement account. With FB at 165 today, Buying 100 shares at 165 and selling one 170 call at $4.50, expiring in 32 days, cost’s about $16,000 to trade!!! If doing an almost identical strategy called a cash secured Put, selling one 160 P at $4.50, the capital requirement is still going to be near $16,000. How do I do this type of a strategy in a very cost efficient way? Sell a wide put Credit Spread. Using FB as an example today. With FB at $165, I can sell the 160 Put at $4.50. Because the capital requirement is very high to sell the put naked, even if I have the capital too do it, I will look to buy a put against it at 15% the cost of my short put. My short put is going for 4.50, 15% of 4.50 is about $65, so look to hedge the short 160 put with the 140 Put . The May 18 expiration 140 Put is currently trading for .65. Now I have a 20 wide put credit spread, short the 160 Put and long the 140 put for roughly a $3.80 credit. My risk or margin is now $1620 for every 1 contract versus $14,000-$16,000 for every 1 contract doing a Covered write or cash secured put!! My profit target might be to make 8% for the month on my capital for 1 contract of $1620. That would be $130 for a profit target on every 1 contract. If I sold the credit spread for $3.80 Credit, I would look to buy it back for $2.50 debit. As far as a Maximum Loss, if I lost 10% would get out. Using this trade as an illustration, if the credit spread exceeded $5.40, would get out for a loss.


Dan Sheridan

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