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Technical FAQ

This FAQ answers many of the commonly asked questions regarding how to use the OptionStack platform. Topics such as how to create / adjust your positions and how to analyze / tune your trading systems are discussed below. If you have any additional questions, please post your questions to our discussions forums.

Creating strategies

You can create various different option spreads, from covered calls to vertical spreads to iron condors.

  • Drag and drop the Strategy block from the Toolbar onto the Main Canvas.
  • Drag and drop various Strategy Filters and attach them to the Strategy Block.
  • Preview the types of spreads that will be constructed by clicking on the “Magnifying Icon” on the Strategy block.

 

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Once you’ve constructed your spread order, click on the “Magnifying Icon” on the Strategy block. A list of matching positions will be displayed in the lower panel.

 

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You can specify the filter for an entire order or for individual legs of an order. By default, the filters apply to the entire order as a whole.

To specify the filters for a specific leg of an order, click on the “Gears” icon on the Filter block and enable the “Leg” option.

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In the example above, a put vertical spread will be constructed where:

  • the highest strike put will have a delta of 25 – 30.
  • the overall position delta will be 15 – 20.
Comments can be enabled in the “Strategy” block under the “Gears” icon.

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Comments will be displayed in the Comments columns in the Transaction table.

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By default, the studies and strategies use the instrument defined at the top block.

To create studies and trades for other instruments, click on the “Gears” option icon, and enable the “Instrument” option .


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Adjusting Positions

You can close an existing position by using the Close block, and specifying the Order ID of the position you wish to close.

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You can close an entire position, or a specific leg of a position.

To close a specific leg of a position, click on the “Gear” option icon and select the “Leg” option. Then select the specific leg you want to close.


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To close a position based on profit / loss targets, you can use an Order Block to monitor the attributes of a particular position, such as profit/loss, return on cost, option greeks, etc.. You can also plot the various attributes of a position, such as its profit/loss and option greeks.

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Analyzing Results

Double-click on any of the transactions in the Transaction Table or the “T” icons on the chart to bring up the transaction details.

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In addition to the transaction details itself, you can also view the portfolio before and after the transaction.

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Double-click on any of the rows in the Statistics table to view the portfolio at a given point in time.

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Debugging

Please take a look at the following videos for tips on debugging your strategy.  Debugging your trading strategy can be accomplished by using the following techniques:

    • Adding Comments to your Orders:  By adding comments to your orders, you can trace the transactions back to your  specific trading rules.

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    • Plotting studies / portfolio attributes:  By plotting the various technical studies and your portfolio attributes, you can observe how your trading rules interact with market conditions.

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    • Previewing your Strategy Orders:  By previewing your strategy orders, you can verify whether your order criteria matches your desired position characteristics.

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Comments

  1. Michael

    I’m hitting a roadblock in my strategy and I am not skilled enough in your program to figure it out. I want:
    -50% of portfolio short on VXX
    -50% of portfolio in money market
    -rebalance every 3rd Friday of Month

    Does it auto-rebalance or how can I make a function to do so?

    I keep getting this error:
    “No transactions match your trading rules.

    Please try adjusting your:

    “When” conditions
    “Strategy” filters
    Backtesting Settings

    Please visit our Help pages for more information.”

    I’m happy to share my .vse with you if that would help.

    Thanks,
    Michael

    1. Author
      Option Stack

      Yes, you can create various portfolio rebalancing strategies, such as percentage composition / calendar-based rebalancing strategies. Please take a look at our Portfolio Rebalancing post. If you need further assistance, please post your question to our Discussion Forums.

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