Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) (BIT:NOK1V) (HEL:NOK1V) is at the top of the heap—at least in terms of overwriting, according to analysts at Goldman Sachs. They say implied volatility is up this week across every sector after the nearly 1% decline in the S&P 500, but in the technology sector, it’s at the highest relative to the last year.
Identifying top overwriting stocks
In order to identify top overwriting candidates, Goldman Sachs analysts look for larger-cap stocks with high implied volatility which are not reporting earnings in the month. In their estimations, these stocks added more than 500 basis points annually between 1996 and 2011. In today’s report, they listed what they consider to be “the most attractive stocks to overwrite” for expiration in January and February.
The analysts report that since the December expiration, call selling has outperformed by just 3 basis points, while put selling outperformed by 34 basis points. They said after looking at a portfolio of 386 stocks in the U.S. market which they think are liquid, they saw call selling outperform long stock strategies only in months with “moderate to down stock performance.” However, put selling outperformed in most months except those with “sharp market sell-offs.”
Nokia tops short-term overwriting list
The Goldman Sachs team placed Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) (BIT:NOK1V) (HEL:NOK1V) at the top of their list for short-term overwriting candidates. They recommend that investors overwrite Nokia and these other stocks with “January 5% out-of-the-money calls.” Here’s a look at their full list of short-term overwriting candidates.
As you can see, some other notable names on here are Sprint Corporation (NYSE:S), 3D Systems Corporation (NASDAQ:DDD), Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA)—which had been Goldman’s top overwriting pick a couple of times late last year—Herbalife Ltd (NYSE:HLF), Green Mountan Coffee Roasters Inc. (NASDAQ:GMCR), Best Buy Co., Inc. (NYSE:BBY) and LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD).
Herbalife comes in second for February
Taking a look at Goldman’s short-term overwriting list for February, we see Herbalife Ltd (NYSE:HLF), again, only it has moved up to second place for February, following Sears Holding Corp (NASDAQ:SHLD). Nokia isn’t on the list for February, which Goldman recommends that investors “overwrite with February 10% out-of-the-money calls.”