Microsoft (MSFT) Pre-Earnings Straddle and Historical Moves

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MSFT Upcoming Earnings and Option Straddle Price

As we approach Microsoft’s earnings release on April 25, 2024, after the market closes, the trading community is observing the options market for clues about expected stock movements. With just one day left, the current options straddle implies a move of 4.4% in either direction. But how does this compare to historical movements and previous straddles? Let's examine the historical data.


Microsoft’s Historical Pre-Earnings Straddle


Source: Market Chameleon

Historically, the average value of Microsoft's pre-earnings straddle at the market close, just before earnings, has been around 4.4% of the spot price. This aligns precisely with the current straddle price, suggesting a normal market expectation as we head into the earnings announcement. Looking specifically at third-quarter earnings, the average historical straddle price has been slightly lower at 4.2%.


Historical MSFT Pre-Earnings Option Straddle Price


The historical range for these straddles has been quite broad, stretching from 7.1% to 2.6%. This high variance indicates that while the current straddle is priced at its average, there's historically been significant fluctuation in how much the market expects the stock to move.


Historical Stock Movements on Earnings Days


Source: Market Chameleon

On average, Microsoft’s stock has moved either up or down by about 3.6% to 3.9% during Q3 earnings days. This suggests that the option straddles have slightly overestimated the potential movements, which could be an important consideration for traders thinking about entering a straddle position now.


Historical MSFT Earnings Stock Movement


Performance of the Earnings Straddle


Source: Market Chameleon

Analyzing the one-day straddle performance over earnings reveals an average return of -7.4%, with a win rate of only 33%. This performance metric suggests that the market tends to overestimate Microsoft's actual earnings day movements. Notably, Q3 earnings have shown slightly positive returns on occasion, influenced by a significant outlier move in 2015. Without such outliers, the general trend indicates more muted actual stock movements compared to the expectations set by option premiums.


Historical MSFT Earnings Option Straddle Performance



The current pricing of Microsoft’s earnings straddle seems attractive, as it is aligned with historical averages, with a full day of trading ahead suggesting minimal potential decay in value. However, history shows that holding a long straddle into the day after earnings might not be the most lucrative strategy, given that actual stock movements have generally been less volatile than the premiums implied.

Investors and traders should weigh these factors carefully. The historical data presents a case where the straddle tends to overestimate movement, which might caution against expecting large earnings-related price swings. As always, market conditions can change, and past performance is not always indicative of future results. Stay tuned, and trade wisely.


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Marketchameleon is a comprehensive financial research and analysis website specializing in stock and options markets. We leverage extensive data, models, and analytics to provide valuable insights into these markets. Our primary goal is to assist traders in identifying potential market developments and assessing potential risks and rewards.

NOTE: Stock and option trading involves risk that may not be suitable for all investors. Examples contained within this report are simulated And may have limitations. Average returns and occurrences are calculated from snapshots of market mid-point prices And were Not actually executed, so they do not reflect actual trades, fees, or execution costs. This report is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to be a recommendation to buy or sell any security. Neither Market Chameleon nor any other party makes warranties regarding results from its usage. Past performance does not guarantee future results. Please consult a financial advisor before executing any trades. You can read more about option risks and characteristics at


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