Option Strike Codes

Discussion in 'Options' started by arturo3, Sep 3, 2005.

  1. arturo3


    Recently, I have been perplexed by the use of some option strike codes.

    For example the september call 17.5 on
    ALCOA INC (AA) is the following:

    AA IT

    as can be seen here:


    As you know, the first three characters "AA " indicate the underlying symbol (please notethat there is an empty space after the second 'A'). The forth character 'I' indicate that it is a CALL September. The last character 'T' indicate the strike price. It is my understanding that the T indicates a strike price of 100 (or 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, 700, 800 ) as shown for example here:


    and NOT a strike price of 17.5, as reported on market smart page. I found also other examples of these inconsistencies. Is there any kind soul willing to explain me what is going on with those symbols?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. zdreg


    i suggest you call the cboe. hopefully you are not on est time.
    where are you located?
  3. arturo3


    I am indeed from Italy. Anyway, to contact directly the CBOE is a good idea. I'll send them an Email. Thanks for your suggestion.

  4. there can be many reasons why a strike code does not match the code schedule you refer to, like (previous) contract adjustments and/or occurence of unusual strikes.

    i wouldn't bother to figure out the reason in any particular case: strike codes are simply unreliable, so NEVER rely on 'm, especially not in a programming code.
  5. arturo3


    Hello, nonprophet. Many thanks for your answer and for the advice on this topic. I must say that I am shocked to learn that strike codes aren't reliable. As I said, I have found several examples of these problems...this means that a lot of people have no clue of what they are doing, i.e., they could be buying/selling at the wrong price!
  6. I guess when the Greeks made the alphabet, they forgot about option strike codes... :p