The use of stock options to reap marginal risk-free profit by locking value created through price differential between exchanges or violation of Put Call Parity.
So, you wish to make money with NO RISK and CERTAINTY OF PROFIT in options trading?
Enters Options Arbitrage!
What exactly is arbitrage? Arbitrage is the opportunity to make risk-free profit by simultaneously buying an underpriced asset and selling it at market price.
Arbitrage has been regarded as the "holy grail" of the capital markets and options arbitrage certainly is the holy grail of free profits for the privileged options traders in options trading. Arbitrage in stock trading typically makes use of price differential of the same security between international markets. Options arbitrage, however, has a lot more opportunities than stock arbitrage as one could not only make use of price differential between exchanges but also violations in Put Call Parity between stock options. In fact, options strategies have also been created to take advantage of specific options arbitrage opportunities and we shall be exploring some of these options arbitrage strategies in this tutorial.
|Be warned that this truly is advanced, complex options trading knowledge and not recommended for beginner options traders.
The only drawback of options arbitrage is that profitable opportunities are hard to come by and gets filled out extremely fast by computers used by big financial institutions that are monitoring for such opportunities at all times. Even if a profitable opportunity is discovered, the commissions involved in such complex options arbitrage strategies usually takes all the profits away. That is why options arbitrage is commonly the realm of professional options traders who need not pay broker fees such as Market Makers and floor traders. Even for obvious options arbitrage opportunities, each position must be experted performed by legging into each side of the trade at the best possible prices in order to guarantee the profitability of the positions.
For arbitrage to work, an inequality in price of the same security must exist. When a security is underpriced in another market, you simply
buy the underpriced security in that market and then sell it at the market price in this market simultaneously in order to reap a risk-free
profit. That is the same concept in options arbitrage with the only difference being in the definition of the term "underpriced". "Underpriced" takes
on a much wider spectrum of meaning in options trading. A
call option can be underpriced in regards to another call option of the same
underlying stock, that call option can also be underpriced in regards to a
put option and options of one
expiration can also be underpriced
in regards to options of another expiration. All these are governed by the principle of Put Call Parity. When Put Call Parity is violated,
options arbitrage opportunities exist.
Box Arbitrage -
Box arbitrage or Box conversion, is an options arbitrage strategy taking advantage of discrepancies across both call and put options of different
strike prices by "boxing in" the profit using a 4 legged spread. This is also known as a
|Can't Decide Which Options Strategy To Use? Try our Option Strategy Selector!