I never understood why people would even consider simple 2 legs vertical spreads. What are you trying to achieve? Reduce your cost? Just buy less, or have tighter stops, at least you will keep all of your upside potential. Trying to capture some premium? Then why enter a directional trade where you are going to give up a lot of premium on the other leg? There are many other strategies for this. These kind of spreads (and others, as well as covered calls) are just a way for your brokers to make twice as much commissions and for you to believe that you are doing something smart. It won't improve your risk/reward. I would be happy if someone could give an example of a directional spread that would yield better results than a simple long call/put with good money management and position sizing.