What does vega measure?
Vega measures the rate of change of an option's price given a 1% move in implied volatility. Like delta, it measures the rate of change of an option's price, but this time in respect to IV.
Do we want vegas going from high to low or low to high?
It depends. Options vega have a direct correlation with implied volatility. This means as the IV rises, the vega rises and when the IV falls, the vega of a option falls. So for positions like debit call spread or calendar spread that you'd open in low IV environment, you would notice a rise in vega with the rise in IV. Conversely, if you have opened a short premium position under high IV environment, you would notice a decrease in vega with decrease in IV.
With passage of time, vegas decrease if there's no change in IV. So if you have long options position, you want the price of the underlying to move, and move fast in your favor. In short options positions, you want the vega keep falling with lowering of IV or passage of time for your position to profit.
How to Obtain High Vegas
As for theta, when the underlying price is ATM vega is at its highest. This is because ATM there is the most amount of extrinsic value. As the price of the underlying goes further ITM or OTM, the curve slopes downward forming our beloved bell curve. With longer expirations, the bell curve is shifted upwards, increasing the value of vega even more.
Here's a valuable trading tip from TastyTrade when it comes to Vega. We can infer the affect IV change will have on the change in price of our options position by considering the current vega:
Eighteen-year old trader, future connoisseur of options.
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