How To Trade Bull Put Spreads And Bull Call Spreads Explained

The choice is a matter of balancing risk/reward tradeoffs and a realistic forecast. A leg is one component of a derivatives trading strategy in which a trader combines multiple options contracts or multiple futures contracts. A bear spread is an options strategy implemented by an investor who is mildly bearish and wants to maximize profit while minimizing losses.

bull call spread example

Thus, the investor’s investment in the long call vertical spread, and the risk of losing the entire premium paid for it, is reduced or hedged. A bull call spread is a vertical spread consisting of buying the lower strike price call and selling the higher strike price call, both expiring at the same time. The strike price of the short call, represented by point B, is higher than the strike of the long call, point A, which means this strategy will always require the investor to pay for the trade.

Here we go further and explore the two main flavour of options … For a market that has been trending higher on the longer time frames, a pullback into a support level may provide an opportunity to get long the market before it resumes the trend higher. Clicking on the symbol will take you to the current quote page. Losses are also capped, in this case by the debit taken when you execute the trade.


Learn step-by-step from professional Wall Street instructors today. Full BioKimberly Overcast is an award-winning writer and fact-checker. She has ghostwritten political, health, and Christian nonfiction books for several authors, including several New York Times bestsellers. Elvis Picardo is a regular contributor to Investopedia and has 25+ years of experience as a portfolio manager with diverse capital markets experience. The offers that appear in this table are from partnerships from which Investopedia receives compensation. Investopedia does not include all offers available in the marketplace.

If you’re expecting a quick market move, you might choose a contract with a two-hour expiration. If you’re expecting a bigger move over the course of several hours or days, you might choose a longer contract. Commodities are assets that what is a bull call spread have tangible properties, such as oil, metals and agricultural products. Investments in commodities or commodity-linked securities may not be suitable for all investors. This is when the Bull Call Spread strategy comes into the picture.

bull call spread example

I’ve compared buying a single long call option to playing a slot machine. The potential payout can be very high, but you can easily lose most if not all of your risked capital. Leg 2 Strike- the price at which the underlying security can be bought if the option is exercised. Leg 1 Strike- the price at which the underlying security can be bought if the option is exercised.

We can see that a rise in implied volatility hurts the trade above the short call, but helps to minimize losses below the long call. Bull call spreads are generally long vega trades, but that can change depending on where the underlying stock is trading in relation to the spread. This means the strategy has limited risk as well as limited profit potential and is generally used when the market is in an upward trend. The difference between a bull call spread and a regular long call is that the upside potential is capped by the short call.

This strategy is often termed a debit spread because of the net capital outlay that is required. A Bull Spread delivers maximum profit when the stock trades at or above the higher strike price at expiration. A bullish call spread option, also known as a bull call spread option, is a trading strategy that aims to capitalize in an increase in the price of a given market or asset. The bull call spread option strategy consists of two call options that create a range that outlines a lower strike point and an upper strike point. The bullish call spread strategy helps to cap loss if the price of an asset drops, however, the strategy also caps the amount of potential gains in case of a price increase.

Bull Call Spread Example

Due to the specifics of the asset class and the high-profit potential, options trading often seems like a tempting opportunity for beginners. Many jump into it with а very limited understanding of how things work. However, for many of them this turns out to be a major mistake. Options trading is very Balance of trade complex and requires experience as well as a specific set of skills. In this article, we will shed light on the bull spread, one of the popular strategies professionals’ prefer to use. We’ll also reveal how you can use it to optimize your performance and capitalize on options trading’s potential.

If the stock price is above the higher strike price, then the long call is exercised and the short call is assigned. The result is that stock is purchased at the lower strike price and sold at the higher strike price and no stock position is created. The maximum risk is fibonacci sequence equal to the cost of the spread including commissions. A loss of this amount is realized if the position is held to expiration and both calls expire worthless. Both calls will expire worthless if the stock price at expiration is below the strike price of the long call .

  • Using our ABC example again that would make the breakeven price $52 (50 long call strike + 2 premium paid).
  • Called the break-even point , this is the price equal to the strike price plus the premium fee.
  • None of the information provided should be considered a recommendation or solicitation to invest in, or liquidate, a particular security or type of security.
  • The maximum gain on the bull put spread in this example is $135, which is $5 lower than with the bull call spread.
  • An outright option is an option that is bought or sold individually, and is not part of a multi-leg options trade.

Sell one call further away from the money than the call purchased. We also review and explain several technical analysis tools to help you make the most of trading. Economic overviews and debt clocks can give you a better understanding of a countries economic stance. Find out more about precious metals from our expert guides on price, use cases, as well as how and where you can trade them.

The effect of an increase or decrease in the volatility of the underlying stock may be noticed in the time value portion of the options’ premiums. The net effect on the strategy will depend on whether the long and/or short options are in-the-money or out-of-the-money, and the time remaining until expiration. A bull call spread is constructed by buying a call option with a lower strike price , and selling another call option with a higher strike price. This is reached when the stock trades under the lower strike price at expiration.

Patience On Upst Leads To The Stock Finding Massive Support

If the stock falls below $50, both options expire worthlessly, and the trader loses the premium paid of $100 or the net cost of $1 per contract. Should the underlying asset fall to less than the strike price, the holder will not buy the stock but will lose Balance of trade the value of the premium at expiration. If the share price moves above the strike price the holder may decide to purchase shares at that price but are under no obligation to do so. Again, in this scenario, the holder would be out the price of the premium.

If at expiry, the stock price declines below the lower strike price—the first, purchased call option—the investor does not exercise the option. The option strategy expires worthlessly, and the investor loses the net premium paid at the onset. If they exercise the option, they would have to pay more—the selected strike price—for an asset that is currently trading for less.

Bull Call Spread: An Alternative To The Covered Call

Make sure the trade is worth your while – make sure the premium you are paying is low enough that you are still making money if the price rises. When the call spread is worth $20, it’s likely that the long call spread trader closes the position for a profit because there’s only $1 left to make and $20 to lose. You know how to determine the potential outcomes of a long call spread at expiration, but what about before expiration? To demonstrate how long call spreads perform before expiration, we’re going to look at a few examples of call spreads that recently traded in the market. For executing this strategy you will need to pay full premium amount plus the margin for writing 1 lot of option.

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Two examples would be hedging an input such as corn or regaining ownership of a commodity that has been sold on the cash market or forward contracted. A bull call spread is usually used when the market is fairly volatile and, as a result, the outright purchase of a call option is considered too expensive. The second advantage/disadvantage of a bull call spread is that this strategy considers the reality and probabilities of a potential move.

There is no risk of runaway losses unless the trader closes the long call position – leaving the short call position open – and the security subsequently rises. The maximum loss occurs when the security trades below the strike price of the long call. Conversely, the maximum gain occurs when the security trades above the strike price of the short call. A variable ratio write is an options strategy that requires holding shares of the underlying asset while writing call options at varying strike prices.

A Bull Put Spread From A “naked” Put Write Recommendation

If the stock ends up at $50 or above, you get to keep this $140 net time premium, net of transaction costs. Bill will realize a maximum gain if the market price rises above the strike price at maturity. Bill will exercise the long call component of the bull spread buying the lower strike call and simultaneously selling the higher strike call . His gain is the difference between the higher strike call and the lower strike call minus the initial cost of the contract. The bull put spread strategy’s potential is realized when the price of the underlying asset moves or remains above the higher strike price.

Commissions, taxes, and transaction costs are not included in any of these strategy discussions, but can affect final outcome and should be considered. Please contact a tax advisor to discuss the tax implications of these strategies. Many of the strategies described herein require the use of a margin account. In-the-money long puts need to be closed out prior to expiration, since exercising them could create short stock positions. A Bull Call Spread strategy is meant for investors who are moderately bullish of the market and are expecting mild rise in the price of underlying.

How The Option Greeks Can Help You Select The Right Option Strategy Right Now

Alright, you’ve seen long call spread examples that break even and realize the maximum loss. In the final example, we’ll investigate a long call spread trade that winds up with its maximum profit potential. It’s important to note that purchasing out-of-the-money call spreads is a low probability trade because the breakeven price is above the stock price at entry. Additionally, the profit potential is greater than the loss potential. If your forecast was incorrect and the stock price is approaching or below strike A, you want implied volatility to increase for two reasons. First, it will increase the value of the option you bought faster than the out-of-the-money option you sold, thereby increasing the overall value of the spread.

Author: Martin Essex

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