OPTIONS & SPREADS:
the Business, the Profession, the Sucker-Trap
I would enjoy a profit would not be known for at least two or three weeks. But the odds favored it by more than 90% because of that important "going in" bottom line: $2,500 of somebody else's money and only $1,500 of my own!
I live a do-what-I-want life, poring over musty volumes on the Kingdom of the Two Sicilys or the life of Verdi, then checking with the broker via the library phone booth. I take a college course in archaeology at the New School for Social Research and Finance & Investments at New York University.
After one class, NYU professor of finance and floor-trader Rich Bensignor remarked to me, "The way you make your living, you must spend your day glued to a computer screen." "Not really," I replied without elaborating. No need to mention the ink-sketch Dianas and exquisite brook-naiads from Deer Park or New Rochelle.
Almost as much as any Greek temple or Roman pantheon, the Mercantile library on Chestnut Street in Philadelphia stands brick-firm in my memory even though it was demolished years ago. In its business section, I first read about "spreads" and "spread strategies." I use them with stock options or equity options, but they can also be used with futures options and futures contracts themselves.
The substantial advantages of spread strategies include the following: