Understanding the Strangle Option Strategy in Options Trading

The strangle option strategy is a popular and versatile trading approach used in the financial markets, particularly in options trading. This strategy allows traders to profit from significant price movements in the underlying asset, regardless of whether it moves up or down.
In this guide, we will explore the long strangle option and strangle option trading, and provide insights into the benefits, risks, and comparison with the Straddle strategy.

What is the Strangle Option Strategy?

The Strangle Option Strategy allows traders to take advantage of significant price movements in an underlying asset. It involves the simultaneous purchase or sale of both a call option and a put option with different strike prices but the same expiration date.

The key component of this strategy is the use of out-of-the-money (OTM) options, which means the strike prices are set at a level where the market price of the underlying asset is currently trading.
The objective of the Strangle Strategy is to profit from volatility in the market. When implementing a long strangle option, the trader buys both a call option and a put option, anticipating a substantial price swing in either direction. On the other hand, in a Short Strangle Strategy, the trader sells both the call option and the put option, expecting the price to remain relatively stable within a specific range.

This strategy is typically employed in scenarios where there is an expectation of high volatility or uncertainty in the market. Traders may use the Strangle Option Strategy when anticipating major news announcements, earnings reports, or significant events that could trigger substantial price movements. It offers a way to potentially profit from these price swings without having to predict the direction in which the market will move.

How Does the Strangle Option Strategy Work?

To execute a Strangle option strategy effectively, select the strike prices and expiration dates carefully. The strike prices should be set outside of the current trading range of the underlying asset to increase the chances of a significant price movement. Traders often choose strike prices that are slightly out-of-the-money to balance risk and reward. Regarding expiration dates, choosing a timeframe that allows for sufficient time for the anticipated price movement to occur is recommended. Typically, options with expiration dates several weeks or months away are preferred for this strategy.

Market conditions play a significant role in determining the effectiveness of the Strangle strategy. It is most effective in highly volatile markets where significant price swings are likely to occur.
This strategy capitalises on sharp price movements, regardless of the direction, making it suitable for traders who anticipate an increase in market volatility but are uncertain about the direction of the price movement.

A thorough analysis of the underlying asset, including its historical volatility and potential catalysts, is essential for identifying optimal market conditions for implementing the Strangle option strategy. Risk management techniques should also be employed to protect against adverse price movements that may result in losses.

Types of Strangle Strategies

There are two main variations of the Strangle strategy: the Long Strangle and the Short Strangle. The key difference between these strategies is the trader’s position in buying or selling options contracts.

The Long Strangle involves buying both a call option and a put option with the same expiration date but different strike prices. This strategy is suitable when the trader expects a significant price movement in the underlying asset but is unsure about the direction.

The Long Strangle involves buying both a call option and a put option with the same expiration date but different strike prices. This strategy is suitable when the trader expects a significant price movement in the underlying asset but is unsure about the direction.

The trader can profit from a substantial increase or decrease in the asset’s price by having both a call and a put option. However, it is important to note that the cost of purchasing both options can be higher, increasing the breakeven point for this strategy.

On the other hand, the short strangle strategy involves selling both a call option and a put option with the same expiration date but different strike prices. This strategy is suitable when the trader expects the underlying asset to have limited volatility and remain within a specific price range.

The trader collects premiums by selling options, which can lead to potential profits if the options expire worthless. However, there is a higher risk involved as the trader is exposed to unlimited potential losses if the price of the underlying asset moves significantly beyond the strike prices.

Benefits of the Strangle Option Strategy

The Strangle option strategy offers several advantages for options traders. Firstly, it provides flexibility in terms of market direction. Unlike other strategies that require a specific directional bias, the strangle allows traders to profit from significant price movements, regardless of whether the asset price goes up or down. This flexibility is especially useful in volatile market conditions where predicting the exact direction can be challenging.

Another benefit of the strangle strategy is its profit potential. By combining a call and a put option , traders can capture substantial gains if the asset price makes a significant move. The potential for profitability is higher than strategies relying on small price fluctuations.

Furthermore, the strangle strategy is suitable for different market conditions. It can be employed in bullish and bearish markets and stagnant conditions with low volatility. This versatility allows traders to adapt to varying market environments and take advantage of opportunities as they arise.

Risks Associated with the Strangle Option Strategy

While the strangle option strategy offers benefits, it is also important to understand the associated risks and downsides.

One key risk is the potential for losses. If the underlying asset price fails to move significantly during the options’ lifespan, traders may experience a loss of the premium paid for both the call and put options. This can result in a limited profit potential and a higher break even point for the strategy.

Risk management is crucial when employing the strangle strategy. Traders must carefully consider the capital they are willing to risk and set stop-loss orders to limit potential losses. Additionally, timing is critical as the strategy requires the asset price to move substantially within a specific timeframe. Failure to predict the timing accurately can result in losses.

Also, the strangle strategy may not be favorable in certain scenarios. For example, during periods of low volatility, the options’ premiums may be relatively high, making it more challenging to achieve a profitable outcome. Further, if the asset price remains within a narrow range, the strategy may result in limited gains or losses.

Strangle vs. Straddle

The strangle and straddle strategies are two popular options trading strategies that have distinct characteristics and are suitable for different market scenarios. The following table outlines the key differences between the two strategies:


Strangle Strategy

Straddle Strategy


Out-of-the-money options

At-the-money options

Risk Level

Lower risk compared to Straddle

Higher risk

Profit Potential

High in volatile markets

High in sharply moving markets

Cost to Implement

Generally lower than Straddle

Higher due to at-the-money positioning

Market Conditions

Suitable for markets expecting significant movement

Ideal for markets with uncertainty in direction of movement


With proper understanding and risk management, the strangle option strategy can be a powerful addition to your trading arsenal. As always, consulting with a financial advisor before making any investment decisions is recommended. Happy trading!

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