Options Volatility Rises as Oil Slides on Global Demand Outlook
Crude oil options volatility rose as futures slipped after the International Energy Agency reduced its world oil-demand forecast for the quarter and a survey projected U.S. supplies jumped to a three-month high.
Implied volatility for at-the-money options expiring in January, a measure of expected price swings in futures and a gauge of options prices, was 30.6 percent on the New York Mercantile Exchange as of 3:35 p.m., an increase from 30.4 percent yesterday.
January-delivery crude oil fell 23 cents to settle at $85.84 a barrel on the Nymex.
Global consumption in the fourth quarter will average 90.1 million barrels a day, which is 290,000 barrels a day, or 0.3 percent, less than previously forecast, the Paris-based energy agency said in a monthly report today.
U.S. oil supplies probably rose 2.5 million barrels last week, according to the median estimate of nine analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.
The most active options in electronic trading today were December $85 puts, which fell 33 cents to 3 cents a barrel on volume of 8,356 lots at 3:43 p.m. May $50 puts were the second- most active, with 3,702 lots exchanged as they held steady at 13 cents a barrel.
Bets that prices would fall, or puts, accounted for 56 percent of the 72,995 lots traded.
The exchange distributes real-time data for electronic trading and releases information the next business day on open- outcry volume, where the bulk of options activity occurs.
In the previous session, puts made up 53 percent of the 151,555 contracts traded.
December $84 puts were the most actively traded options yesterday with 25,196 contracts. They fell 17 cents to 12 cents a barrel. December $85 puts declined 19 cents to 33 cents on volume of 12,864 lots.
Open interest was highest for December $120 calls, with 68,068 contracts. Next were December $125 calls, with 46,020 lots, and December $115 calls with 42,060.
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