POT – Potash Corp./Saskatchewan – Shares of the potash producer are down 1.75% to stand at $96.04 as of 12:35 pm (ET), but the actions of one bearish investor suggests the price of the underlying stock could decline more significantly ahead of expiration day in September. The pessimistic player purchased 7,500 puts at the September $90 strike for a premium of $4.30 each, and sold the same number of puts at the lower September $75 strike for $1.12 in premium apiece. Net premium paid to establish the spread amounts to $3.18 per contract. Thus, the trader is positioned to make money if POT’s shares fall another 9.6% to trade beneath the effective breakeven price of $86.82 by expiration day in September. The investor stands ready to amass maximum potential profits of $11.82 per contract – for total potential gains of $8.865 million – should shares of the underlying stock plunge 21.9% from the current price to trade at or below $75.00 by expiration. POT’s shares have not traded below the breakeven price of $86.82 since October 5, 2009, and the price of the underlying has not dipped below $75.00 since March of 2009.
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Andrew Wilkinson is the senior market analyst at Interactive Brokers Group, where he provides daily commentary and analysis on U.S. equity options trading throughout the trading day. Andrew provides webinars designed to explain option-related trading scenarios covering futures, fixed income, forex and equities.
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