Friday, December 30, 2011

Bought DIA puts

Bought 2013 $120 puts on DIA.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Bought PPP

Part of my limit order on PPP at $3.00 triggered today pre-market. The stock is trading at $3.27 at open, so I must just have gotten lucky when someone entered a market sell order. Yay! That fills half my target position; the other half is still open at $3.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Bought AAPL calls

Bought AAPL 2014 $380 calls for $93.04

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Sold GMR

Sold GMR for $0.191--ouch! GMR was one of my super-deep-value, kill-or-cure stocks.

Bought ATVI calls

Bought Feb 2012 $13 calls on ATVI for $1.18

Friday, September 23, 2011

Bought more PHYS

Bought PHYS at $14.33.

Bought more PSLV

Yesterday, I bought more PSLV @ $17.30. Today, i bought more at $15.25. My cost basis is now $17.45.

Ugh, buying in the course of a falling market is always gut-wrenching.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Bought, yes, even more SCPZF

Bought more SCPZF at $4.54. My cost basis is now $4.96.

Bought PHYS, bought SLW calls

Bought PHYS @ $15.03. My cost basis for that position is now $15.13.
Bought SLW 2013 $25 calls @ $15.49.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Bought yet more SCPZF

While I was writing the post below, my buy order for SCPZF at $4.76 triggered. My cost basis is now $5.10.

What is SCPZF?

SCPZF is the pink sheet listing for Sprott Resources. It trades on the Toronto exchange as SCP.

Sprott Resources is one of the commodity-oriented companies created by Canadian resource investor Eric Sprott. Sprott is chairman and also receives a management fee through Sprott Consulting Limited Partnership. It's set up like a hedge fund; SCLP receives 2% of the NAV, plus an additional percentage if profits are over a certain level. Kenneth Bambrough is the CEO

SCP owns, in whole or in part, several resource-oriented businesses in Canada:

Waseca Energy (oil)
Orion Oil and Gas (oil and natural gas)
One Earth Oil & Gas (oil and natural gas)
Westfire Energy (oil and natural gas)

Stonegate Agricom (fertilizer)
One Earth Farms (crops and cattle).

73,971 ounces gold bullion, worth about $136.8 M at $1850/oz. Or, about 25% of market cap at the current share price of $4.80

The "One Earth" businesses are organized in partnership with several Canadian First Nations. This improves economic development and employment in the One Earth areas and this stable, long-term relationship with land owners allows One Earth to benefit from economies of scale which enhances the company's long-term profitability.

EDIT to add: SCP doesn't pay dividends, but they have a habit of making stock buybacks. The most recent was announced August 30, for 8% of shares outstanding.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Bought more SCPZF

Bought yet more SCPZF at $4.99. My net buy price is now $5.19.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Bought more PSLV

Bought more PSLV at $18.38. My cost basis is now $18.93

Bought PHYS

Bought PHYS at $15.29

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Bought PSLV

Bought PSLV at $19.48

Friday, August 19, 2011


Sold ROIC for $10.93. I may buy it back later at a lower price.

Bought even more SCPZF

Bought SCPZF for $5.03, bringing my average cost for this position to $5.32.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Sold AAPL calls

Sold my AAPL 2013 $330 calls for $93. Better to regret not making as much money than to regret losing money, I say.

Sold IWM puts

Sold my IWM August $81 puts @ $10.40. This was the bear fraction of a put spread I started in March. The bull fraction was closed in May.

Thursday, August 4, 2011


Well, that was bracing.

Every one of my stop-loss orders triggered today.

Sold PHYS @ $14.09
Sold UPL @ $43.61
Sold FNF @ $15.50
Sold HNR @ $12.00
Sold EPM @ $7.03
Also sold BPI @ $22.09 (not a stop-loss order--it was up on the day due to news and I booked my profits while I had 'em).

My portfolio is almost exactly 70% cash now.

On the plus side, my old August $81 IWM puts, which were showing a 50% loss as late as yesterday, are now in the money with a 40% gain.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Sold PCL

My sell order on PCL triggered at $37.45.

So, last Wednesday I bought:

DGS (emerging markets dividend ETF), PG (international consumer necessities), PCL (timber), NRT (northern European energy royalty trust), SJT (South American energy royalty trust), BPT (North American energy royalty trust), PEB (US REIT) and PHYS (paper gold).

And of that diversified list of assets, the only one which has outperformed the USD is gold. Gosh. (Oh, the Swiss franc is up, too).

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Sold BPT

My sell order on BPT triggered at $112.61. Golly.

Sold PG

My sell order on PG triggered at $61.01


My sell order for NRT triggered at $33.41.
My sell order for DGS triggered at $52.10.

I had tightened the sell trigger on both positions.

Sold PEB

My sell order on PEB triggered at $19.09

Friday, July 29, 2011

Sold SJT

I made several purchases Wednesday; I put a trigger on many positions so they'd automatically be sold if they dropped 5% below my buy price. SJT triggered today, selling for $23.45. That was fast.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Many purchases

Today I bought the following:

DGS @ $52.94, 5%
PG @ $62.76, 5%
PCL @ $38.65, 5%
NRT @ $33.40, 5%
SJT @ $24.71, 5%
BPT @ $114.00, 5%
PHYS @ $14.08, 5%
PEB @ $20.09, 2%

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Closed DDD puts

Bought to close my DDD puts for $5.05

Friday, June 10, 2011

Bought 2013 AAPL calls

Bought Jan 2013 AAPL $330 calls for $52.50 per share. I already had calls for that date and strike so this brings my cost basis to $57.75 (from $63.00).

Sold NTZ

Sold NTZ for $3.71

Friday, May 6, 2011

Closed OXM calls

Sold to close my OXM calls for $13.50

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Sold a whole bunch of positions, as my favored seasonal indicator went bearish (Nasdaq NH-NL 5/17 day moving average, here:$NAHL&p=D&yr=0&mn=1&dy=0&id=p65895739383 ). I also closed the lower-strike option of my bear put spread.

Sold to close:

LLL Jan 2013 $60 calls @ $22.20
GSK Jan 2012 $40 calls @ $4.12
JNJ Jan 2012 $50 calls @ $15.37
MDT Jan 2012 $35 calls @ $8.11
AAPL Jan 2012 $260 calls @ $98.00
AAPL Jan 2012 $230 calls @ $124.00
AAPL Jan 2012 $180 calls @ $171.00

Bought to close:
IWM Aug 20 2011 $72 puts @ $1.50
AAPL July 2011 $330 puts @ $7.90

I'm now in 50% investable cash. I have one written put position, on TDSC. I have one bought put position, the higher-strike part of my bear put spread hedge on IWM. I also currently own calls on OXM, HEK, GILD, and AAPL.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Closed AFSI puts

Closed my June $17.50 puts on AFSI for $0.15.

After I sold these puts, I put in a buy-to-close order to sell as soon as I'd made 80% of my potential profits. This is my SOP when selling puts.

Remember, I sold these puts on January 20 for $0.90.
The term of the put was six months. Holding to expiration would have paid me 5.14%, or 0.86% per month. [ $0.90/$17.50 * 100 = 5.14% 5.14%/6 months = 0.86% per month ]
I bought the put back early, having made 80% of my potential profit. The effective term was four months. My profit was $0.75 or 4.29% total or 1.07% per month [ $0.90 - 0.15 = $0.75. $0.75/$17.5 *100 = 4.29% 4.29%/4 months = 1.07% per month ]

So by closing early, I made 0.21% per month more than I would if I had just held the out-of-the-money puts to expiration.

0.21% per month isn't much, but it's 2.52% annualized--more than my bank account is paying right now.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Closed GSK puts

I bought-to-close my $38 May puts on GSK for $0.30.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Sold BH

Sold BH at $404.31

Sold AAPL puts, TDSC puts

Sold AAPL Jul 16 2011 $330 puts for $18.80.
Sold TDSC Nov 19 2011 $45 puts for $6.00


Bought TDSC for $57.89
Bought SSYS for $52.50
Bought GMR for $2.38

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bought ES

Bought ES at $5.93

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sold MAXY, bought ROIC

Bought ROIC for $10.88
Sold MAXY for $5.10

Remember, MAXY spun off CDXS, which I sold.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Bought FNF

Bought FNF at $13.79

Bought GKK, Bought BPI

Bought GKK for $4.43
Bought BPI for $16.95

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Risk vs. volatility

I consider "risk" to be the possibility of losing capital. Volatility is fluctuation in value. Risk should be avoided; volatility can bring opportunities.

Bought HEK calls

Bought HEK Sep 17 $2.50 calls for $3.83. The stock is currently trading for $6.28. If exercised, these calls would make HEK 4% of my portfolio at a net buy price of $6.33. The net buy price is about the same as it would be if I bought it now, but my investing has a more defensive posture right now and this strategy reduces my risk exposure. That is, is HEK drops to zero I will have lost "only" $3.83 per share rather than $6.28.

Friday, March 18, 2011


Sold PCL for $42.50
Sold BBL for $74.39
Sold DGS for 49.83

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Sold SH

Sold SH for $42.97.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Bought SH

Bought SH at $43.27

Monday, March 14, 2011

Bought BBL

Bought BBL for $73.70.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Closed KCI calls

Sold-to-close my Jan2012 $30 calls on KCI for $21.40 per share.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Hedging with a put spread on IWM

I bought Aug3011 $81 strike puts on IWM for $5.81, then sold twice as many Aug2011 $72 puts on IWM for $2.93. That is, I bought the right to sell IWM for $81, and sold my promise to buy twice as much IWM for $72. The two dollar amounts cancel one another; this position was started as a hedge against a drop in IWM.

IWM is the Russell 2000 index. It was at $82 when I made this trade.

So, if IWM declines $10 per share (12%) I will be obliged to buy it at $72. At that point, the $81 puts I bought will be profitable.

If IWM rises above $81, the puts I bought will be worthless--but they would cost me nothing because the purchase of the $81 puts for $5.81 would be covered by the puts I sold for $5.86 (2 * $2.93).

If IWM ends between $81 and $72, the puts I sold will expire unexercised. The puts I bought will have a value which will vary according to the market price.

Keep in mind that I'm on the hook to buy IWM at $72. I initiated this position only because I'm willing to own this amount of IWM at this price. The purchase would also be subsidized by the value of the $81 puts I bought (if IWM drops enough that the $72 puts are exercised by the buyer, I will be able to sell half as many shares at $81 due to the puts I bought).

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


Sold ROC for $47.51
Sold TRAD for $7.18
Sold CRL for $38.36


Sold TQQQ for $84.00

Monday, March 7, 2011

Bought TQQQ

Bought TQQQ at $82.85. I will probably be out of it by tomorrow's close.

Sold PCBC, Sold MSFT

Sold PCBC for $29.81
Sold MSFT for $25.92

Sold KRE

Sold KRE for $26.59. If it drops a few dollars, I may write puts again for income.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Bought more SCPZF

Bought SCPZF at $5.66

Bought CRL

Bought CRL at $36.76

Monday, February 28, 2011

33% in cash

I'm now about 33% in investable cash. Another 9% is securing puts.

Closed calls on MDT, GOOG

Bought-to-close MDT Jan 21 2012 $25 calls for $14.84
Bought-to-close GOOG Jan 21 2012 $510 calls for $126.20
Bought-to-close GOOG Jan 21 2012 $530 calls for $111.70

These are long calls I had purchased earlier. They still have ten months to expiration. I'm closing them and selling the calls to a new buyer. This provides a good example of why I like LEAP options.

I bought the $510 calls on GOOG in May 2010 for $91 per share. I'm now selling them for $126.20 per share, with ten months remaining until expiration. GOOG is currently selling around $613 per share. I could have exercised the calls, bought GOOG for $510, and resold it for $613--a $12 per share profit [ sales price - purchase price - premium = $613 - 510 - 91 = $12 ]. Instead, I sold the calls to a new buyer for a $35.20 per share profit [ sales price - purchase price = $126.20 - 91 = $35.20 ].

Here's the math for all three transactions:
GOOG $510 calls, exercising calls:
[ sales price - purchase price - premium = $613 - 510 - 91 = $12 ]
GOOG $510 calls, reselling calls:
[ sales price - purchase price = $126.20 - 91 = $35.20 ]

GOOG $530 calls, exercising calls:
[ sales price - purchase price - premium = $613 - 530 - 88 = - 5 ] <---NOTE THE LOSS
GOOG $530 calls, reselling calls:
[ sales price - purchase price = $111.70 - 88 = $23.70 ]

MDT $25 calls, exercising calls:
[ sales price - purchase price - premium = $40 - 25 - 8 = $7 ]
MDT $25 calls, reselling calls:
[ sales price - purchase price = $14.84 - 8 = $6.84 ]

This is a good example of why it's important to go through the math for each possible outcome of your options. For the GOOG $510 calls, a profitable trade was made more profitable by reselling the calls. In the GOOG $530 calls, a loss was avoided by reselling the calls. For the MDT $25, I would have made slightly more money ($0.16 per share) by exercising the calls. In that case, I chose to resell the calls because I'm already exposed to MDT through $35 calls I own and I'm no longer confident enough in the stock to justify that much exposure.

In each case, the calls began as multi-year LEAPs, and I've owned them for enough time to see if my investment thesis will play out. Longer expiration periods for calls tend to give more time to see results, are more flexible in providing a variety of profit-taking options, and are often reasonably priced for what you get.

Sold BRS, Sold BHP

Sold BRS for $47.10
Sold BHP for $94.39

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Sold MDT

Sold MDT for $39.35

Friday, February 18, 2011

Bought PCBC

Bought PCBC at $28.81

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Bought DGS

Bought DGS for $52.00

Bought SCPZF

Bought SCPZF at $5.52

Sold LLY, sold GSK puts

Sold GSK May $38.00 puts for $1.50.

Sold LLY for $34.59.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Sold INTC, bought ROC, bought OXM calls

in the past few weeks I have performed the following actions:

Sold INTC at $21.06
Bought $22.50 strike July calls on OXM for $3.80
Bought ROC for $44.00, making a 4% position.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Sold AFSI puts, bought AAPL calls, sold PG

In the past few days I have performed the following trades;

I sold June 2011 $17.50 AFSI puts for $0.90 per share.
I bought Jan 2013 $330 AAPL calls for $63.00 per share.
I sold PG for $66.57 per share.