Guest Post: Timing the Market

By Jeff Imbrogno

During my undergraduate studies, my derivatives professor told me a story about one of his friends, who was an options trader. In 1980, his friend purchased options to buy silver for $50 per ounce. At the time, silver experienced a meteoric increase in price, reaching record highs. The price of silver peaked just below $50 per ounce, then rapidly declined, rendering the options effectively worthless. This individual was not ready to accept his loss. Convinced that the price of silver would quickly return to peak levels, he renewed his $50 options for a small fee plus commission. Twenty years later, this gentleman was still paying to renew these options every three months because he was unwilling to accept his loss. When I watch the 2013 Phillies, I am reminded of this poor investor. As the trade deadline approaches and the team remains in playoff contention purgatory, GM Ruben Amaro Jr. has not committed to buying or selling players. It is expected that the Phillies will wait until the end of the Tigers’ series to decide whether to move or add players, but will the team’s assets have any value by the time Amaro is ready to sell them?

Continue reading…