Buy-write outperforms buy and hold: Study

The following is from the Options Industry Council...

CHICAGO - September 14, 2011 - The Options Industry Council (OIC) today announced results and analysis of the performance of a buy-write strategy on the Russell 2000®, which found that over the 15 year period covered in the study (including the periods before, during and after the credit crisis), the buy-write strategy provided a higher return than a long RUT portfolio while reducing risk by almost 17%.

In the study, “15 Years of the Russell 2000 Buy-Write,” Nikunj Kapadia and Edward Szado from the University of Massachusetts looked at the performance of data from February 1, 1996 to March 31, 2011, concluding that a passive buy-write strategy of one month to expiration calls on the Russell 2000 consistently outperformed the index. Over 182 months, the 2% out-of-the-money buy-write returned 263% (8.87% annually), compared to the return on the RUT of 226% (8.11% annually). Furthermore, the annualized standard deviation for the entire period on the buy-write portfolio was 16.57%, almost 4 ½ percentage points lower than for the RUT portfolio.

This is an update to one in a series of studies intended for institutional investors which evaluate the performance of different options strategies on different contracts over specific time periods. By supporting these studies in conjunction with well-respected research and educational institutions, OIC remains committed to its mission of providing education and research to institutional investors. With options volume on a growth trend in recent years, these studies show the importance of options in attaining investment goals.

To access the OIC summary, visit: http://www.optionseducation.org/institutional/research/pdfs/oic-buy-write-strategy.pdf.

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