New Trade Alert for (WFM)
Whole Foods Buy WFM May $26 Call @$5.75 or less
Risk Rating: 3 (1 = lowest 5 = highest)
Above Break Even Probability: 44%
Max Loss Probability: 23%
Whole Foods Fight
A fall from grace has hit high flyer Whole Foods cutting shares price in half from the February of 2015 $58 highs. Competition in organic goods and an increase in high end food stores have closed the gap with pedestrian everyday grocers.
Whole Foods has come back from the dead before, under $4 in 2008, surging to all time highs at $65 in 2013. The $35 midpoint of that move is an important pivot to monitor as it held the downside slide after an August earning gap lower.
Bullish divergence with new lows but not new highs in volatility suggests sellers may have run grown tired.
WFM has tracked sideways from $34 to $30 for more than four months targeting $38 on an upside breakout. That $38 level also coincides with an earnings price gap that could be filled on the upside.
A stock substitution strategy using options ties up less capital and has absolutely limited risk to the premium paid. An option instead of buying the shares also has greater staying power for long term trend development.
The May option has over five months for Bullish development.
An In-The-Money option gives you the right to be long the shares from a lower strike price and costs much less than the stock itself.
The Options Way: Unlimited Upside Potential with Limited Risk.
A Whole Foods long call option can provide the staying power in a potential bullish trend extension. More importantly, the maximum risk is the premium paid.
One major advantage of using long options instead of buying or selling shares is putting up much less money to control 100 shares — that’s the power of leverage.
Choosing an option can sometimes be a daunting task with all of the choices and expiration months. Simply put, traders want to buy a high probability option that has enough time to be right.
The option strike price is the level at which you have the right to buy without any obligation to do so. In reality, you rarely convert the option into shares. Simply sell the option you bought to exit the trade for gain or loss.
There are two rules options traders need to follow to be successful.
Rule One: Choose an option with 70%-plus probability. The Delta is a measurement of how well the option reacts to movement in the underlying security. It is also important to buy options that payoff from only a modest price move.
There is no need to ONLY make money on the all but infrequent long shot price explosions.
Good Options can profit from only modest directional moves.
Any trade has a fifty/fifty chance of success. Buying options ITM options increase that probability. That Delta also approximates the odds that the option will be In The Money at expiration.
Buying better options are more expensive, but they are worth it — the chances of success are mathematically superior to buying cheap, long shot Out Of The Money lottery tickets that rarely ever pay off.
With WFM at $30.60, for example, an In The Money $26.00 strike option currently has $4.60 in real or intrinsic value. The remainder of any premium is the time value of the option.
Rule Two: Buy more time until expiration than you may need — at least three to six months for the trade to develop. Time is an investor’s greatest asset when you have completely limited the exposure risks.
Traders often buy too little time for the trade to develop. Nothing is more frustrating than being right but only after the option has expired premature to the market move.
Trade Setup: I recommend the WFM May $26 Call at $5.75 or less. A close in the stock below $28 on a weekly basis or the loss of half of the option premium would trigger an exit.
An option play also has staying power with the ability to ride through Ups and Downs that would force most stock traders out of the position.
The option also behaves much like the underlying stock with a much less money tied up in the investment. The Delta on the $26 strike call is 78%.
The May option has over five months for bullish development. This option is like being long the stock from $26, a low level not seen since 2011, with completely limited risk.
The maximum loss is limited to the $575 or less paid per option contract, with a stop at half $275. The upside, on the other hand, is unlimited.
The WFM option trade break even is $31.75 or less at expiration ($26 strike plus $5.75 or less option premium).
If shares just move back to the July $37 to $39 price gap this option would be worth near $12.00 for near 100% return on investment.