Put Fly Option Strategy

Put fly option strategy

Home / Option Strategy Finder / Neutral Trading Strategies

Short Put Butterfly

The short put butterfly is a neutral strategy like the long put butterfly but bullish on volatility.

Put fly option strategy

It is a limited profit, limited risk options strategy. There are 3 striking prices involved in a short put butterfly and it can be constructed by writing one lower striking out-of-the-money put, buying two at-the-money puts and writing another higher striking in-the-money put, giving the options trader a net credit to put on the trade.

Short Put Butterfly Construction
Sell 1 ITM Put
Buy 2 ATM Puts
Sell 1 OTM Put

Limited Profit

Maximum profit is attained for the short put butterfly when the underlying stock price rally pass the higher strike price or drops below the lower strike price at expiration.

If the stock ends up at the higher striking price, all the put options expire worthless and the short put butterfly trader keeps the initial credit taken when entering the trade. 

If, instead, the stock price at expiry is equal to the lower strike price, the lower striking put option expires worthless while the "profits" of the remaining long put is canceled out by the "loss" incurred from shorting the higher strike put.

Put fly option strategy

So the maximum profit is still only the initial credit taken.

The formula for calculating maximum profit is given below:

  • Max Profit = Net Premium Received - Commissions Paid
  • Max Profit Achieved When Price of Underlying <= Strike Price of Lower Strike Short Put OR Price of Underlying >= Strike Price of Higher Strike Short Put

Short Put Butterfly Payoff Diagram

Limited Risk

Maximum loss for the short put butterfly is incurred when the price of the underlying asset remains unchanged at expiration.

At this price, only the higher striking put which was shorted expires in-the-money. The trader will have to buy back that put option at its intrinsic value to exit the trade.

The formula for calculating maximum loss is given below:

  • Max Loss = Strike Price of Higher Strike Short Put - Strike Price of Long Put - Net Premium Received + Commissions Paid
  • Max Loss Occurs When Price of Underlying = Strike Price of Long Put

Breakeven Point(s)

There are 2 break-even points for the short put butterfly position.

The breakeven points can be calculated using the following formulae.

  • Upper Breakeven Point = Strike Price of Highest Strike Short Put - Net Premium Received
  • Lower Breakeven Point = Strike Price of Lowest Strike Short Put + Net Premium Received


Suppose XYZ stock is trading at $40 in June.

Butterfly Option Strategies

An options trader executes a short put butterfly by writing a JUL 30 put for $100, buying two JUL 40 puts for $400 each and writing another JUL 50 put for $1100. The net credit taken to enter the position is $400, which is also his maximum possible profit.

On expiration in July, XYZ stock has dropped to $30. All the options expire worthless and the short put butterfly trader gets to keep the entire initial credit taken of $400 as profit.

This is also the maximum profit attainable and is also obtained even if the stock had instead rallied to $50 or beyond.

On the downside, should the stock price remains at $40 at expiration, maximum loss will be incurred.

Put fly option strategy

At this price, all except the higher striking put expires worthless. The higher striking put sold short would have a value of $1000 and needs to be bought back to close the trade.

By minute live cryptocurrency graph download

Subtracting the initial credit of $400 taken, the net loss (maximum) is equal to $600.

Note: While we have covered the use of this strategy with reference to stock options, the short put butterfly is equally applicable using ETF options, index options as well as options on futures.


Commission charges can make a significant impact to overall profit or loss when implementing option spreads strategies.

Their effect is even more pronounced for the short put butterfly as there are 4 legs involved in this trade compared to simpler strategies like the vertical spreads which have only 2 legs.

If you make multi-legged options trades frequently, you should check out the brokerage firm OptionsHouse.com where they charge a low fee of only $0.15 per contract (+$4.95 per trade).

Similar Strategies

The following strategies are similar to the short put butterfly in that they are also high volatility strategies that have limited profit potential and limited risk.

Short Condor

Short Butterfly

Reverse Iron Condor

View More Similar Strategies

Long Put Butterfly

The converse strategy to the short put butterfly is the long put butterfly.

Mutual Funds and Mutual Fund Investing - Fidelity Investments

Long butterfly spreads are used when one perceives the volatility of the price of the underlying stock to be low.

Short Call Butterfly

The short butterfly can also be created using calls instead of puts and is known as a short call butterfly.


The short put butterfly spread belongs to a family of spreads called wingspreads whose members are named after a myriad of flying creatures.

You May Also Like

Continue Reading...

Buying Straddles into Earnings

Buying straddles is a great way to play earnings.

Many a times, stock price gap up or down following the quarterly earnings report but often, the direction of the movement can be unpredictable.

Logga in i internetbanken forex

For instance, a sell off can occur even though the earnings report is good if investors had expected great results....[Read on...]

Writing Puts to Purchase Stocks

If you are very bullish on a particular stock for the long term and is looking to purchase the stock but feels that it is slightly overvalued at the moment, then you may want to consider writing put options on the stock as a means to acquire it at a discount....[Read on...]

What are Binary Options and How to Trade Them?

Also known as digital options, binary options belong to a special class of exotic options in which the option trader speculate purely on the direction of the underlying within a relatively short period of time.....[Read on...]

Investing in Growth Stocks using LEAPS® options

If you are investing the Peter Lynch style, trying to predict the next multi-bagger, then you would want to find out more about LEAPS® and why I consider them to be a great option for investing in the next Microsoft®....

[Read on...]

Effect of Dividends on Option Pricing

Cash dividends issued by stocks have big impact on their option prices.

This is because the underlying stock price is expected to drop by the dividend amount on the ex-dividend date....[Read on...]

Bull Call Spread: An Alternative to the Covered Call

As an alternative to writing covered calls, one can enter a bull call spread for a similar profit potential but with significantly less capital requirement.

In place of holding the underlying stock in the covered call strategy, the alternative....[Read on...]

Dividend Capture using Covered Calls

Some stocks pay generous dividends every quarter.

Limited Risk

You qualify for the dividend if you are holding on the shares before the ex-dividend date....[Read on...]

Leverage using Calls, Not Margin Calls

To achieve higher returns in the stock market, besides doing more homework on the companies you wish to buy, it is often necessary to take on higher risk. A most common way to do that is to buy stocks on margin....[Read on...]

Day Trading using Options

Day trading options can be a successful, profitable strategy but there are a couple of things you need to know before you use start using options for day trading....

[Read on...]

What is the Put Call Ratio and How to Use It

Learn about the put call ratio, the way it is derived and how it can be used as a contrarian indicator....

Best Option Strategy - Butterfly ( Monthly regular Income from Stock market ) Episode - 38

[Read on...]

Understanding Put-Call Parity

Put-call parity is an important principle in options pricing first identified by Hans Stoll in his paper, The Relation Between Put and Call Prices, in 1969. It states that the premium of a call option implies a certain fair price for the corresponding put option having the same strike price and expiration date, and vice versa....

[Read on...]

Understanding the Greeks

In options trading, you may notice the use of certain greek alphabets like delta or gamma when describing risks associated with various positions.

Long Put Butterfly

They are known as "the greeks".... [Read on...]

Valuing Common Stock using Discounted Cash Flow Analysis

Since the value of stock options depends on the price of the underlying stock, it is useful to calculate the fair value of the stock by using a technique known as discounted cash flow.... [Read on...]

Put fly option strategy