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173 of 184 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Your launching pad into the world of stock options
I was in the middle of writing my own book on retirement investing, which I have now finished. During that process I read many different books to get a well-around education on the subject. One area that always fascinated me - but seemed overwhelming - was the arena of stock options. I read the Futures and Options for Dummies book, only to then become more confused. I...
Published on June 30, 2007 by Deron Baker

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118 of 125 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great style, poor contents
Most people who are familiar with stocks and have never traded options before tend to treat options like stocks. The main strategies exposed by this book are the naked purchasing and selling of options with no spread, which are the very ones that a beginner will try to use (since they seem similar to stock trading) but should not. The only exception, the covered call...
Published on December 4, 2008 by Paulo C. Rios Jr.


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173 of 184 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Your launching pad into the world of stock options, June 30, 2007
This review is from: Understanding Options (Paperback)
I was in the middle of writing my own book on retirement investing, which I have now finished. During that process I read many different books to get a well-around education on the subject. One area that always fascinated me - but seemed overwhelming - was the arena of stock options. I read the Futures and Options for Dummies book, only to then become more confused. I kinda gave up on the subject until I stumbled upon Michael Sincere's book in the store.

Don't let the size of the book fool you. The author packs quite a lot of information into these 221 pages. He explains the world of stock options in a very easy-to-understand format. Michael debunks many myths about options and shows you that while some types of options are highly risky, some are not.

This book is the launching pad to get you started in the world of stock options. You will eventually need to read more if you wish to purchase or sell options, but this book becomes your foundation. The nice thing about this book is that you will quickly learn whether or not options are right for you. Personally, I do not want to participate in options. However, I was able to make an informed decision based on the knowledge found in this book. I am still glad I read the book and highly recommend it to anyone who is curious about stock options.
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118 of 125 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great style, poor contents, December 4, 2008
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This review is from: Understanding Options (Paperback)
Most people who are familiar with stocks and have never traded options before tend to treat options like stocks. The main strategies exposed by this book are the naked purchasing and selling of options with no spread, which are the very ones that a beginner will try to use (since they seem similar to stock trading) but should not. The only exception, the covered call strategy, has a low risk but also a very low return too and doesn't protect the investor against a major contrary market movement.

One can't deny that the author's intentions seem to be the best possible. He has a friendly manner and tries to motivate the reader all the time. The writing is very pleasant. But, unfortunately, style and intentions are not substitute for a poor treatment of a subject matter.

Armed with the information from this book, the beginner will hopefully find that some key knowledge is missing. For example, the author's explanation on how to adjust a naked call that didn't go well pales in comparison with the outstanding treatment and alternatives presented by McMillan in "Options as a Strategic Investment" on the chapter on the naked purchasing of calls.

For a much better treatment and introduction than this book, try "Get Rich with Options" by Lowell. Its title could be improved, but its contents are just superb. Any comparison with this book under review is simply unfair.

As Einstein once said, "make it simple but not too simple."
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75 of 81 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly Recommended !!, May 8, 2008
By 
Its just me! (Palm Springs, CA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Understanding Options (Paperback)
Reading a book on Options Trading is usually a daunting task. While it is true that statistical probabilities, The Greeks and mathematically determining an overpriced or underpriced option all play a part in option trading, in the beginning, this often confuses and intimidates a novice.

Michael Sinceres' book is different. He leaves the mathematics alone. In very simple language, Sincere walks you through the four basic option trades:

1. The Covered Call.
2. Buying a Call.
3. Buying a Put.
4. Selling a Put.

What you may not know is that most brokerages will limit a beginning option traders to these 4 trades anyway.

As if he were sitting at your kitchen table, Sincere actually takes you step- by-step, through each trade. No, this is not a complete treatise on option trading but it is a very good start.

It is true that the key to option success is choosing the right underlying stock. If you have never bought a stock, his book on stock trading would be a better choice. It is also true that options are a form of gambling and anyone who says their "system" guarantees success is probably selling something very expensive.

If you have experienced trading stocks and are looking for your first option book, this would be the one I'd recommend.
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27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent beginners guide, March 2, 2009
By 
Amazon Customer (Harrisburg, PA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Understanding Options (Paperback)
I recently purchased two books on options trading. I'm a beginner so I needed something that clearly explained how options trading works. Understanding Options by Michael Sincere is an excellent book for a beginner. The other book that I purchased is Options Made Easy (2nd edition) by Guy Cohen. If you're a beginner, Option Made Easy isn't so easy. I wouldn't recommend this for a beginner. Stick with Michael Sincere in Understanding Options. It's a worthwhile investment!
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent first options book!, November 25, 2008
This review is from: Understanding Options (Paperback)
I have been a stock market investor for 25 years. Over that time I think I probably learned, in bits and pieces, everything in this book. The problem is I didn't have a complete picture of what options were all about or how many of the elements of options trading (i.e. delta, spread, volatility, etc.) related and affected the potential of any given option or strategy. Therefore, I never bought or sold a single option. Had I read this book years ago my overall investing performance would have been greatly improved and the number of sleepless nights greatly reduced.

This book is an extremely easy read for anyone with a general idea of what options are about and I suspect would not pose an overwhelming challenge even for someone with no knowledge at all on the subject.

The most exciting outcome of my reading this book is I placed my first options trades today. A few of my trades today were for hedging purposes on my existing portfolio and a few were for speculation.

I doubt I will ever become a "day trader" or an options guru, but I now can stay active in my portfolio, blending modest hedges and speculation for what almost certainly will be a better overall outcome. Thank you Mr. Sincere.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good for novice options traders, but..................., November 24, 2011
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This book is great for novice option traders. It goes through the details and characteristics of options and opening up an option account in a methodical and non-technical manner. The author simplifies complex topics and concepts with reasonably good analogies.

However, it all starts to get tedious when the author feels compelled to use four chapters to explain the covered call strategy. I mean seriously, four chapters to explain a covered call trade. The author implies that the trade is reasonably safe and unfortunately many brokers appear to accept that mantra as well. However, a covered call is akin to a naked put structure, which is highly risky for a novice trader. I found it amusing that in chapter 16, the author stated that, selling naked puts is risky, to which I say, "why advocate the selling of covered calls? The payoff is the same!"

The explanation of the Greeks was paucity at best. Where are the diagrams to explain the effect of theta decay, the effect of changing volatility, the effect of changing delta and gamma on option prices? It would be a lot easier to explain the effects of the Greeks on option pricing with diagrams.

In addition, later in the book the author commences to detail vertical spreads, butteflys, etc. However where are the risk graphs, to enable the reader to visualize the option structures. Trying to explain option structures without visual aids to novice option traders is ineffectual.

The book while having a number of weaknesses, does a commendable job of introducing options trading to complete novices. Although, I would suggest novice traders pursue further readings before commencing options trading.

One of the better introductory options books for aspiring options traders is, "Options for the Beginner and Beyond", written by W. Edward Olmstead.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good beginner book, September 27, 2007
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This review is from: Understanding Options (Paperback)
A well written, easy to understand book on introduction to options trading.
Shows how one can use much less capital up front to get the same or larger profits than owning shares outright.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just learning or want to learn? Get this book!, February 7, 2009
By 
NineToez (Los Angeles, CA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Understanding Options (Paperback)
I am your typical small investor, in love with penny stocks and ETFs. A friend got me curious with options trading and saw how he was making returns, however he wasn't just going to stand over my shoulder all day and tell me what to do, so I had to learn. Among the many books I have bought and read was this one. "Understanding Options" isn't written in legal jargon and confusing terms; it is written in very laymen terms that most anyone can follow and comprehend.

Especially in today's economic climate, you need guidance as to how to play the market. Those seminars by the airport just take your money and confuse you even more just to sell you expensive software when you still never understand the fundamentals. Knowledge and information are critical in any sort of investing; if you plan to trade options on any level, you'll be glad you read this book.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for the price, August 7, 2008
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This review is from: Understanding Options (Paperback)
This is a very good beginners book on options. It explains in simple terms a very complex subject. I read several books before this one. After I read this book, I wished I had read this one first. The price is right too.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great primer in the world of options, February 8, 2009
This review is from: Understanding Options (Paperback)
While many people understand the basics of investing in the stock market, the options market creates a whole additional level of complexities and intricacies. In this book, Michael does a great job of explaining the basics to the layman who is looking to get started, but doesn't know where to start. Further, he expands on basic strategies that can be used after identifying potential trade opportunities.

If you've ever dabbled in options, but felt a bit clueless, or if you have heard all about options, but haven't the slightest clue what your "options" are, this is a great read to get you started in the right direction.
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Understanding Options
Understanding Options by Michael Sincere
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