Equity Options Trading Volume Surges 38% Daily Equity Open Interest Breaks Records for Second Month in a Row
Chicago—October 6, 1999
The Options Industry Council (OIC) announced today that equity options trading volume in September rose 38% from the same period last year, with 37,411,462 contracts changing hands. September 1998 equity volume totaled 27,195,498 contracts.
For the second month in a row, this month saw the highest daily equity open interest ever, with 46,389,021 contracts open on September 17, as well as commanding the highest month-end equity open interest to date at 43,720,667. Equity open interest is the total number of options contracts not yet exercised or allowed to expire and is one indication of longer-term investing in equity options.
Average daily volume for the month was 1,781,498 contracts. Year-to-date, cleared volume for equity options (as of September 30,1999) was 301,763,202.
"As we enter a historically volatile time of year for equity investors, many are turning to options to balance their portfolio and hedge against the risk these months can represent," said Paul Stevens, OIC's President.
An equity option is the right but not the obligation to either buy or sell 100 shares of stock at a predetermined price (strike price) on or before a fixed date (expiration date).
The OIC, which includes the American Stock Exchange, Chicago Board Options Exchange, Pacific Exchange, Philadelphia Stock Exchange and The Options Clearing Corporation, has an extensive educational program. The program, aimed at current and potential investors and their brokers, includes a web site at www.optionscentral.com, two instructional videos: "How To Optimize Your Stock Portfolio With Options" and "Investing with LEAPS" available at 800/952-8665, and free evening seminars throughout the continental United States and Canada.
Interactive educational software, "The Options Toolbox," is now available for free to seminar attendees and can be downloaded from OIC's web site. A print and broadcast advertising campaign has resulted in more than 250,000 inquiries seeking literature and videotapes.
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