Option Styles

Options come in different styles. The style relates to when the options can be exercised. The two styles are:

  • American-Style: At this point in time all stock options traded on the marketplaces are American-style. This means that the option holder can exercise the option at any time from purchase until the expiration date.
  • European-Style: A European-style option can only be exercised at expiration. Several index options traded on the marketplaces are European-style.

American-style options are the most common and will be used in all examples in this text.

Where To Trade Options

Options are regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and are traded by individuals, institutional investors and professional traders in the following securities market places:

NYSE AMEX AMEX
The Chicago Board Options Exchange CBOE
NYSE Arca ARCA
NASDAQ OMX PHLX PHLX
The NASDAQ Options Market NOM
International Securities Exchange ISE
BATS Options BATS
Boston Options Exchange BOX
The Chicago Board Options Exchange - C2 C@

Buy and sell orders for options contracts are transacted through brokers. Options' performance can be tracked through the market places on which they trade, in financial tables on many major newspapers, as well as on NASDAQ.com.


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Disclaimer: This site discusses exchange-traded options issued by the Options Clearing Corporation. No statement on this site is to be construed as a recommendation to purchase or sell a security, or to provide investment advice. Options involve risks and are not suitable for all investors. Prior to buying or selling an option, a person must receive and review a copy of Characteristics and Risks of Standardized Options published by The Options Clearing Corporation. Copies may be obtained from your broker; one of the exchanges; The Options Clearing Corporation at One North Wacker Drive, Suite 500, Chicago, IL 60606; by calling 1-888-OPTIONS; or by visiting www.888options.com. Any strategies discussed, including examples using actual securities and price data, are strictly for illustrative and education purposes and are not to be construed as an endorsement, recommendation or solicitation to buy or sell securities.

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