Key Takeaways with Craig
Due to travel schedules, we’re going to use the Key Takeaways section as to highlight two of CME’s popular options products today; options on E-mini and Micro E-mini S&P 500 (ES and MES).
These options products allow traders to gain precise exposure to the benchmark S&P 500 Index with the same benefits of nearly around the clock trading and capital efficiencies that futures offer. Some characteristics of these options include:
- Daily, Weekly, Monthly and Quarterly expirations allowing users precision in determining the exposure they desire.
- With the exception of the four Quarterly expirations, options on ES and MES are European-style, meaning they cannot be exercised early.
- Like most CME futures and options products, they are available for trading from Sunday evening through Friday at 4:00 PM Central time, except for a daily, one hour window between 4:00 and 5:00 PM Chicago time.
- SPAN margining ensures the same capital efficiencies as CME Group futures enjoy.
E-mini and Micro E-mini S&P 500 options have many of the same characteristics but, because the Micro E-mini Options are based on futures 1/10 the size of the E-mini, the options are also 1/10 the size.
For example, assume, hypothetically, that on Thursday, August 17th, with the underlying E-mini S&P 500 future trading near a price of 4,407, that the following was true:
- The E-mini and Micro E-mini S&P 500 4,430 Call expiring on Monday, August 21, could be bought for 13.25 points
- The E-mini and Micro E-mini S&P 500 4,445 Call expiring Monday, August 21, could be sold for 8 points.
Then, again hypothetically, a trader could buy the 4,430/4,445 Call Spread for 5.25 points. In Dollar terms, the trader would pay:
- $26.25 for the Micro E-mini S&P 500 Call Spread
- $262.50 for the E-mini S&P 500 Call Spread
We’ve included an excerpt from a tool that we believe can be very valuable to CME Group options customers called the Contract Directory and Calendar below. This tool shows, in calendar form, all of the different days on which an option in a particular product has an expiry. On the right side, clicking on a given expiry (the Friday, Sep 1st in this example) will give the user much of the information about the option and the future on which it is based that they might need. The live version of the tool can be found here.
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