Are You a Contrarian?

Con·trar·i·an – A person who takes an opposing view. One who rejects the majority opinion as in economic matters.

What an emotional business this is. The uneasy market sell-off continues big time today with option implied volatility soaring higher. And the radio and TV experts have no problem pumping fear into the average investor’s head. Fright sells.

When I started trading I made the big mistake of watching and listening for every clue to help me place the perfect trade. It only filled my head with too many insights to sort through that I became handcuffed when I tried to make a trade. I never tried to understand the behavior patterns of a few hundred stocks like some people do. Through failure I later learned that my own knowledge and opinions on a handful of stocks could be trusted by me.

How are the stocks which you trade options on behaving today? Stocks are sympathetic creatures that have the ability to get legs and rebound on their own. There is a time to break away from the average Joe investor who is waiting for the great and powerful Oz to tell him what’s coming next. You need to focus on your own now and look for opportunity through options to take advantage of these market occurrences.

Factual information from the media is always welcome. A spirited market discussion you may have with others is too. But when it comes down to forecasting or following the herd don’t let anyone lead you on. Be a contrarian.

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Peter Lusk

Peter Lusk is a Senior Instructor for The Options Institute at CBOE, the educational arm of the Company. Lusk, who joined CBOE in 2007, teaches a variety of options courses for public and institutional investors. Lusk has presented to thousands of investors across the U.S. and has conducted hundreds of webinars for…