Customer Reviews: Trading Options For Dummies
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on December 2, 2008
This book assumes that the reader already have familiarity with stocks, and would like to move further, to options. The author doesn't take into account the fundamental analysis of the underlying security, however, there is a chapter about the technical analysis. In my point of view, it is a drawback: a reader already familiar with the stock market may be aware of the technical analysis, so either both technical and fundamental need to be covered or none.

The book covers three types of options: stock options, index options, and ETF options. There is a separate chapter devoted to ETFs, but a reader already familiar with a stock market will get no benefit from this chapter.

The book is printed with quite a large font have quite much space around the text, so it is quick to read. This may be a good introductory book to options. It is pretty basic and easy to understand, however, it fails to address an important technique of selling puts as a way of buying the underlying security. Warren Buffett obtains most of his stock holdings through selling puts. He got most of his Coca-Cola Holdings this way, and, recently, Burlington Northern Santa Fe.

If you need a much deeper book on options, I would recommend "The Options Course" by the same author. It doesn't have the drawbacks above mentioned, very friendly and easy to understand, although it is a much lengthier read.
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on July 18, 2008
What this book lacks in detail, it makes in subject completeness.

There are dozens and dozens of great websites out there describing options and trading strategies in far better depth and completeness than this book. So, if you're looking for complex spreads or techniques, this book will not satisfy you.

However, online searches are so saturated in trading strategies that it's actually difficult to become aware of real world transactional details (like, "who are the market makers? how does assignment work?"). this book nicely wraps up those "loose ends" that are hardly ever mentioned on your favorite search engine.
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on June 2, 2010
Options is an area that is very complex, and, if anything, the author dumbed it down too much. There are a lot of ways to make mistakes with options.

This book does a good job of covering the basics and beyond. If you are having trouble understanding parts of it, don't blame the book. The subject matter is difficult for those new to it. Take your time with this material. Unlike other areas of study, being wrong in options can cost you money. While the author lists some pros and cons with paper trading, I found it to be useful for my own learning. Look for a brokerage that offers this. This will also help you get used to the mechanics of opening and closing positions without risking actual money.

Also, you do not have to master the numerous strategies discussed in the book to make use of options. You can buy single calls and puts and gain leverage while keeping thigs simple.

The author has written more advanced books when you are ready to dig into the statistics more deeply.
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on September 12, 2009
I've read many books written for the Dummies series and this one is by far the worst. Fontanills seems to have a very strong personal understanding of options and what it takes to trade them successfully but NO idea of how to teach the basics successfully to others through the written word. I've spent entirely too much time going back to reread pages as he glosses over important information, information that is then required to continue to understand the following concepts. After barely highlighting key terms he often then only refers to them by their acronyms, again requiring you to page backward to find the info. Charts are frequently impossible to read and very few walk-through examples are given. He never stops to gather and go over the important information in a chapter or section and often leaves you clueless as to how things apply to the average day trader sitting at home in front of his computer. I like to think that I have more than a basic knowledge of the stock market and how it works but, with that said, way too much prior knowledge is assumed on his part for this too be an introductory book into anything.

These books are not cheap and, as far as I'm concerned, Fontanills owes me some money back!
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on August 28, 2008
I wanted a book which would explain buying and selling options in a thorough way for someone who knew very little about options. This is not the book.

The author seems to have the intent to throw in as many complex terms without every explaining the simple things. Never once in this book is a walk through through on how to buy a call, how to sell the option, or on how to exercise the underlying contract. The same goes for simple puts.
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on August 18, 2008
I wanted something that took me from 0 to 60 in a couple of hours, to explain options in plain english. This book goes from 20 to 120 then back to 40 and up to 80 then back to 10, very poorly constructed and organized.

(My review for Dummies: This book is difficult to follow, jumps around a lot, and rarely satisfies the curiousity at hand)
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on March 15, 2009
OK...any time I see a book with "For Dummies" in the title, I assume it is a "Beginner's" book. This author clearly wrote a different book. While the information in this book is probably accurate and useful to those with options experience, it is absolutely useless to anyone with no experience.
I admit it...I'm a "Dummy"...who was looking for a book that would walk me through the basics. You know, "square one" kinda stuff. With that in mind, I purchased this book. After all, that's what the title suggests...right?
So, my suggestion to anyone who is looking for a real beginner's book on options is to stay clear of this one. It's a complete loser as it fails miserably in delivering what the title promises.
It may be a great book for those with experience...but, what would I know ? Like I said, I'm a "Dummy".
Bottom line...don't waste your money.
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on November 25, 2009
I picked up this book to learn about options as a supplement to my stock investing. The first three times I tried to read the book I thought I was just too tired to "get it." Yesterday I became absolutely certain that this book is so poorly organized and edited that YOU WILL NEVER UNDERSTAND options and their strategies from reading the text. Moreover, the glossary in the back of the book is incomplete.

Don't even think about buying this text. It is worthless. I just threw my copy away this morning to insure that no one else would have it inflicted on them.
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on July 18, 2009
Options for idiots is one of the poorest written books of this series. Its set-up is confusing; there are no sections that delineate options strategies. Half the book is spent reviewing options basics, which is far too long. I think most people buy this book to learn basic option strategies, when to use what strategy, the advantage and disadvantage of each. This type of information is either buried in the book or just not present. This is a "dummies" book I would pass on, you should be able to find far better basic reviews.
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on December 6, 2010
I knew a little bit about options before buying this book. After reading the first a few chapters I was completely confused and lost all the basic knowledge I had. It is a horrible read for beginners. Terrible job
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