Apple's $500 Close: It's Not Manipulation!

Tickers in this article: AAPL
NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- It's so freaking 2011. At least for me it is. But, really, it's timeless.

Anyway, I did not plan on writing another article until Tuesday morning, but somebody must step in to bring clarity to the hysterical inanity that reoccurs regularly regarding Apple (AAPL) and the related options market concepts of maximum pain and pinning.

I covered this -- in depth, in 2011 -- when I wrote for Seeking Alpha . You can find the source articles here and here.

However, I'm going to give you all of the information you need right here at TheStreet to prove that ...

Apple's $500 close has nothing to do with market manipulation so stop with the conspiracy theory nonsense and learn something! A small subset of readers will believe what they want to believe no matter what type of information gets placed in front of them, but remember this is coming from one of Apple's biggest defenders as of late .

It was a shooting star! No, it was a UFO . It was a shooting star! No, it was a UFO . Shoot me now.

The big money is not sitting in a room changing the hands of a clock or rolling back miles on an odometer on Friday afternoon to make sure that, magically, AAPL closes where they want it to be. Sorry.

There's a perfectly logical explanation, illustrated in plain English, as told to me by Neil Pearson, University of Illinois Professor of Finance and Harry A. Brandt Distinguished Professor of Financial Markets and Options, back in May 2011.

I researched the subject and contacted the professor to authoritatively counter the pure crap "opinion" that options traders work together to get AAPL to close wherever they want it to close on options expiration day (which is today).

It's almost two years later and I must regurgitate the same information.

Excerpts from Seeking Alpha links listed on Page One:

Rocco Pendola : Please define pinning and the theory of maximum pain.
Neil Pearson : "Pinning" and "maximum pain" are closely related. Pinning refers to the phenomenon that on option expiration Fridays the prices of optionable stocks tend to close on or very near to option strike prices. This is not to say that this Friday AAPL will necessarily close on or near to an option strike price, but rather that AAPL is more likely to close on or near to an option strike price on Friday than on any other day of the week.
The theory of maximum pain goes further, saying that the stock price will tend to move toward the price where the total value of options contracts, both puts and calls together, is the lowest. This theory thus identifies the specific option strike price that will tend to attract the stock price. If the stock price closes at the strike that minimizes the total value of options contracts, this minimizes the value received by buyers and paid by option sellers when the options expire. Because this benefits option writers, some market participants claim that the stock price movement is caused by option writers manipulating the stock price to create profits for themselves and losses to option buyers.

Usage of this site is governed by TheStreet's Terms of Use available here. Information collected on this site may be collected by TheStreet and OC Register. TheStreet's use of information collected on this site will be governed by TheStreet's privacy policy available here. OC Register's use of information collected on this site will be governed by OC Register's privacy policy available here. If either TheStreet's or OC Register's privacy policy have provisions that are more restrictive than the provisions of the other party's privacy policy, such more restrictive provisions shall not apply to such other party.

Copyright © 2012 Orange County Register Communications. All Rights Reserved.
Site Help | Site Map