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• The Easy Way to Write Calls
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If you’ve never written calls before, you might imagine that it’s complicated. I assure you, it is not. In fact, most discount brokers have an interface with which you can perform my entire recommended operation within a few seconds with one click of the mouse. I give you a few brief bits of information to enter; you just type it in and click the mouse. That’s it. Any broker can execute a Buy/Write call strategy for you, but the way to keep your costs lowest and your profits highest is to use a discount broker.

Most discount brokers have a “one click” interface for Buy/Writes. It is easy to use by following a few easy steps.

  1. Go to the option trade page and select the tab that says something like "Buy/Write" or "Write Covered Calls."
  2. Most sites will have a choice for a Limit/Debit or Net/Debit order.
  3. Enter the stock symbol I give you, the call symbol I give you, and the Limit/Debit price I give you. The only other entries you need to make are the number of shares of stock to buy, and the number of call contracts to sell. Even that is simple, it’s just one option contract for every 100 shares of stock. So, if you buy 500 shares of stock, you sell 5 option contracts.
  4. Then you just click the “order” button.

Using this system, your order will only be executed if you can get it at the net price I recommend. I demand a certain expected profit margin on a given trade. The Limit/Debit order system only executes your order if it can buy the stock and sell the call at the prices which allow that expected profit.

If your broker doesn’t have this system you can still use my recommendations. The only difference is you have to buy the stock and sell the calls separately, and you have to make sure by your own calculations you’re getting the expected margin. I have a calculator on my web site to help with this, but you might consider transferring your account to a different discount broker who has the Limit/Debit setup. I recommend Options Express but many others, like Schwab, Harris and American Express, to name just a few, have it too.

If you want to learn still more about covered call writing, read Covered Call Boot Camp.

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