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New Trade Alert March 21st – Southwestern Energy

New Trade Alert for (SWN)


Southwestern Energy CASH SECURED PUT SALE

Sell April SWN $7.00 Put @$0.50 or more to open


Risk Rating: 2     (1 = lowest   5 = highest)


Above Break Even Probability: 72%


Let option expire or get long SWN shares at $6.50


HIGH PROBABILITY 8% potential return in three weeks  

BUY Southwestern Energy 17% Lower, or Get Paid Not To…


Volatility is OPPORTUNITY…


The crucial measure of payoff for an investment is RETURN on RISK.


Controlling and quantifying risk is the primary job of an investor.  Once the worst case scenario is determined downside exposure to ANY possible event is calculated in dollar terms and financial impact on the portfolio only then can participation be weighed


Risk and Probability are the factors that can be controlled using options as the most positive attributes.  The super leverage benefit is secondary to the ability to know the maximum cost of any potential catastrophic stock move.



Southwestern energy had dropped from near $30 last May to $5 in December.  The stock slam had seen a $25 more than 80% decline in less than a year.


SWN trade has tracked from $5 to $10 in the past weeks with a pullback from the February peak. The midpoint support stands at $7.

An upside breakout of the sideways range targets $15.


The option volatility above the 100% level makes the option expensive in relative value compared to the market itself.  Option selling strategies take advantage of the increased premiums.


The potential return on risk is 8% is attractive with a $6.50 break even at the option expiration.  Decade plus lows were made December 17th at $5.00.


Buying at a 17% discount price if assigned is a way to position for a long term recovery in a single digit stock…. Or to get paid not to buy it at these extreme low levels.


The high implied volatility makes option selling strategies attractive as pure probability trades that utilize time decay acceleration.  The April options have just over three weeks until expiration.


One tactic to buy at a lower price, or get paid not to, is used by money managers to buy stocks they WANT for long term portfolio positioning.  Use others fears for your benefit by selling a CASH SECURED PUT to enter the stock at a major discount.


Option tactics can be employed to make money in Up, Down and Sideways action to take advantage of other variables or time and volatility.


The fear and uncertainty can be used to get in another 17% lower for those who are at worst are comfortable holding on to an inexpensive stock to wait for a potential recovery.


Portfolio Strategy


The straightforward Price Order to buy a stock at a lower level is common if it can be determined where it is comfortable to get in below current prices.  Put in the trade at “X” and wait for the dip to enter.


Professional money managers have certain points at which they would buy a desirable stock but an option strategy lets them get in at discount or get paid not to.


Selling a CASH SECURED put, has the same mathematical risk profile as a covered call, would assign the stock long at the option strike price.  The true entry basis is actually even lower with the subtraction of the premium.


With the Put sale there is an OBLIGATION to buy at the strike price if it is assigned.


However, if the stock is not below the strike at expiration the premium received is all profit.  Get in the stock at a discount or get paid not to…


As of this writing SWN is trading around $8.00.


There are two rules that Cash Secured Puts traders need to follow to be successful.



Have the funds in the account to buy the stock at a discount if a selloff continues.


The intention is to be assigned the stock, with each option sold representing 100 shares, as a long-term investment.  Paying in full ensures that no additional money is needed to hold for potentially many, many months or even years until price recovery.

Rule Two: Sell either of the front two option expiration months to take advantage of time decay.


Collect premium every month on put sales until assigned shares at a cost reduced basis.  Every month that you keep the premium is money subtracted from the entry price.


Trade Setup:  Sell the SWN April $7.00 Puts to open at $0.50 or better.  The cash secured Put sale would assign long shares at $6.50 if it is put to you costing $650 per option sold.


ONLY sell this put if you want to own the shares at a discount to the current price.  



The combination of time decay and 70%+ probability of SWN finishing above the $6.50 break even make the option sale attractive with 26 days until expiration.


Decade plus SWN lows are at $5.00.




If assigned shares, a May covered call can be sold against the stock to lower the cost basis again when you own it.


If SWN stock does move lower, buy the shares for 17% cheaper than the current share price.  Otherwise, you get paid not to… and get an 8% return on risk in just over three weeks.

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