LONG IRON CONDOR
Strategy Details  
Strategy Type  Neutral on direction, but bullish on volatility 
# of legs  4 (Short 1 Lower Strike Put + Long 1 Lower Middle Strike Put + Long 1 Higher Middle Strike Call + Short 1 Higher Strike Call) 
Maximum Reward  Lower Middle Strike Price  Lower Strike Price  Net Premium Paid 
Maximum Risk  Limited to the extent of net premium paid 
Lower Breakeven Price  Lower Middle Strike Price  Net Premium Paid 
Upper Breakeven Price  Higher Middle Strike Price + Net Premium Paid 
Payoff Calculation  Payoff of lower strike Short Put+ Payoff of lower middle strike Long Put + Payoff of higher middle strike Long Call + Payoff of higher strike Short Call 
Explanation of the Strategy
A Long Iron Condor is a strategy wherein the trader would sell a lower strike Put, buy a lower middle strike Put, buy a higher middle strike Call, and sell a higher strike Call. Each of the option that is traded under this strategy must belong to the same underlying and must have the same expiration. Usually, the lower strike and the lower middle strike Puts are OTM Puts, whereas the higher middle strike and the higher strike Calls are OTM Calls. At the time of initiating this strategy, the underlying price is usually somewhere between the two middle strikes. Usually, all the four options are equidistant from each other. However, this is not a hard and fast rule. Sometimes, traders keep a wider distance between the two middle strikes as compared to that between the outer and the middle strike. Doing so increases the profit potential, but also widens the lossmaking zone.
In terms of direction, a Long Iron Condor is a neutral strategy. This is because this strategy can profit either from a down move in the price of the underlying or from an up move. That said, this strategy is bullish on volatility and benefits during times when volatility is rising, and vice versa. This is because the higher the volatility, the higher would be the probability of the position becoming profitable. A Long Iron Condor has two breakeven points: lower and upper. The position is unprofitable as long as the underlying price is within the two breakeven points and is profitable when the underlying price is outside one of the two breakeven points. Both profits and losses under this strategy are limited. Maximum profit occurs when the underlying price falls below the lower strike or rises above the higher strike, while maximum loss occurs when the underlying price gets stuck inside the two middle strikes.
A Long Iron Condor is a net debit strategy. Maximum potential profit under this strategy is usually smaller than the maximum potential loss. As a result, this strategy must preferably be initiated by experienced option traders only. Before initiating this strategy, one must always take into consideration the risk to reward ratio and must initiate only if this ratio is acceptable and worth trading for. Also, as we shall later see, Long Iron Condor has a similar payoff structure as a Short Call Condor or a Short Put Condor. However, there are differences. The major difference is that short Call/Put Condor strategies are net credit strategies, whereas Long Iron Condor is a net debit strategy.
Benefits of the Strategy

This strategy is direction neutral as the trader can profit from either direction, up or down

Maximum loss under this strategy is limited

Rising volatility has a beneficial impact on the strategy payoff
Drawbacks of the Strategy

The cost/risk of this strategy tends to exceed the potential reward

There are chances that the trader could lose 100% of his net investment

When the underlying price is within the confines of the two middle strikes, a decline in volatility would hurt the position

A sharp move below the lower strike or above the higher strike would lead to an opportunity loss as maximum profit potential under this strategy is capped

Time decay would hurt the trader, especially when the position is unprofitable
Strategy Suggestions

See that you have a neutral view on the price direction, but you expect volatility to increase sharply once you have initiated the position

Ensure that the strikes are evenly placed. In other words, see that the distance between the lower and the lower middle strike is equal to that between the higher middle and the higher strike

However, sometimes, traders keep the distance between the two middle strikes slightly wider than between the outer and the middle strike to account for a higher profit

The spread between the strikes will be a tradeoff between the cost/risk of the strategy and the potential reward

The wider the difference between the adjacent strikes, the higher will be the cost and the risk but so would be the reward, and vice versa

Similarly, the wider the difference between the adjacent strikes, the wider would be the lossmaking zone, and vice versa

As this is a neutral strategy that benefits from rising volatility, ensure that you execute this strategy when expiration is far off, as this would give you sufficient time to go right

As the risk/cost tends to be higher than the reward, execute this strategy only when the risk reward ratio is acceptable to you

Ensure there is sufficient liquidity in the underlying that is being chosen to initiate this strategy
Option Greeks for Long Iron Condor
Greek  Notes 
Delta 
Delta is at or near zero at initiation. It tends to bottom out below zero when the underlying price is below the lower strike and peak out above zero when the underlying price is above the higher strike. That said, while Delta does become nonzero as the underlying price moves, it does not deviate much from zero. As such, changes in the price of the underlying do not have much impact on this strategy because of the way it is structured. 
Gamma 
Gamma is positive and is at its highest point in between the two middle strikes. As the underlying price moves away from the midpoint of the two middle strike and approaches either the lower or the higher strike, Gamma tends to move into negative before bottoming out around these extreme strikes. 
Vega 
Vega is positive and is at its highest point between the two middle strikes, meaning the positive impact of a rise in volatility is the greatestaround the middle strikes. Volatility benefits as long as the position in unprofitable. That said, Vega turns negative when the position becomes profitable, meaning rising volatility now starts hurting the position. 
Theta 
Theta is negative and is at its lowest point between the two middle strikes, meaning time decay hurts the most around the middle strikes. Time decay hurts the position as long as it is unprofitable. That said, Theta turns positive when the position becomes profitable, meaning time decay now starts benefiting the position. 
Payoff of Long Iron Condor
The above is the payoff chart of a Long Iron Condor. Notice that this strategy has an opposite payoff structure as compared to a Long Call Condor or a Long Put Condor. As we can see, maximum loss under this strategy occurs when the underlying price gets stuck within the range of the two middle strikes. On the other hand, maximum gain under this strategy occurs when the underlying price either falls below the lower strike price or rises above the higher strike price. Notice that both maximum loss and gain are known beforehand and are limited. Meanwhile, also notice that the strategy is unprofitable when the underlying price is within the range of the two breakeven points and is profitable when the underlying price moves outside either of the two breakeven points.
Example of Long Iron Condor
Let us say that Mr. ABC has decided to execute a Long Iron Condor strategy on Nifty. The details of the strategy are as below:

Strike price of OTM short Put = 8800

Strike price of OTM long Put = 9000

Strike price of OTM long Call = 9200

Strike price of OTM short Call = 9400

ShortPut premium (lower strike) = ₹50

Long Put premium (lower middle strike) = ₹105

Long Call premium (higher middle strike) = ₹70

Short Call premium (higher strike) = ₹20

Net Debit = ₹105 (105 + 70  50  20)

Net Debit (in value terms) = ₹7,875 (105 * 75)

Lower Breakeven point = 8895 (9000  105)

Upper Breakeven point = 9305 (9200 + 105)

Maximum reward = ₹7,125 ((9000  8800  105) * 75)

Maximum risk = ₹7,875
Now, let us assume a few scenarios in terms of where Nifty would be on the expiration date and the impact this would have on the profitability of the trade.
Underlying price at Expiration  Net Profit/Loss  Notes 
7000  Profit of ₹7,125  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88007000,0)]+[Maximum of (90007000,0)105] + [Maximum of (70009200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (70009400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is below the lower breakeven point, the trader will make a profit 
8000  Profit of ₹7,125  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88008000,0)]+[Maximum of (90008000,0)105] + [Maximum of (80009200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (80009400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is below the lower breakeven point, the trader will make a profit 
8800  Profit of ₹7,125  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88008800,0)]+[Maximum of (90008800,0)105] + [Maximum of (88009200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (88009400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is below the lower breakeven point, the trader will make a profit 
8850  Profit of ₹3,375  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88008850,0)]+[Maximum of (90008850,0)105] + [Maximum of (88509200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (88509400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is below the lower breakeven point, the trader will make a profit 
8895  No profit, No loss  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88008895,0)]+[Maximum of (90008895,0)105] + [Maximum of (88959200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (88959400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is equal to the lower breakeven point, the trader will neither make a profit nor incur a loss 
8950  Loss of ₹4,125  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88008950,0)]+[Maximum of (90008950,0)105] + [Maximum of (89509200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (89509400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is between the two breakeven points, the trader will incur a loss 
9000  Loss of ₹7,875  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88009000,0)]+[Maximum of (90009000,0)105] + [Maximum of (90009200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (90009400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is between the two breakeven points, the trader will incur a loss 
9100  Loss of ₹7,875  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88009100,0)]+[Maximum of (90009100,0)105] + [Maximum of (91009200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (91009400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is between the two breakeven points, the trader will incur a loss 
9200  Loss of ₹7,875  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88009200,0)]+[Maximum of (90009200,0)105] + [Maximum of (92009200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (92009400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is between the two breakeven points, the trader will incur a loss 
9300  Loss of ₹375  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88009300,0)]+[Maximum of (90009300,0)105] + [Maximum of (93009200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (93009400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is between the two breakeven points, the trader will incur a loss 
9305  No profit, No loss  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88009305,0)]+[Maximum of (90009305,0)105] + [Maximum of (93059200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (93059400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is equal to the upper breakeven point, the trader will neither make a profit nor incur a loss 
9350  Profit of ₹3,375  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88009350,0)]+[Maximum of (90009350,0)105] + [Maximum of (93509200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (93509400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is above the upper breakeven point, the trader will make a profit 
9400  Profit of ₹7,125  Payoff = [50Maximum of (88009400,0)]+[Maximum of (90009400,0)105] + [Maximum of (94009200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (94009400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is above the upper breakeven point, the trader will make a profit 
10000  Profit of ₹7,125  Payoff = [50Maximum of (880010000,0)]+[Maximum of (900010000,0)105] + [Maximum of (100009200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (100009400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is above the upper breakeven point, the trader will make a profit 
12000  Profit of ₹7,125  Payoff = [50Maximum of (880012000,0)]+[Maximum of (900012000,0)105] + [Maximum of (120009200,0)70] + [20Maximum of (120009400,0)]. As the underlying price at expiration is above the upper breakeven point, the trader will make a profit 
Notice that maximum profit of ₹7,125 for this strategy occurs when Nifty either falls below the lower strike of 8800 or rises above the higher strike of 9400. On the other hand, observe that maximum loss of ₹7,875 occurs when Nifty gets stuck between the two middle strikes i.e. 9000 and 9200. Meanwhile, notice that the maximum risk of the strategy is greater than the maximum reward. As a result, this strategy must preferably be executed by experienced option traders only.
SHORT IRON CONDOR
Strategy Details  
Strategy Type  Neutral on direction andbearish on volatility 
# of legs  4 (Long 1 Lower Strike Put + Short 1 Lower Middle Strike Put + Short 1 Higher Middle Strike Call + Long 1 Higher Strike Call) 
Maximum Reward  Limited to the extent of net premium received 
Maximum Risk  Lower Middle Strike Price  Lower Strike Price  Net Premium Received 
Lower Breakeven Price  Lower Middle Strike Price  Net Premium Received 
Upper Breakeven Price  Higher Middle Strike Price + Net Premium Received 
Payoff Calculation  Payoff of lower strike Long Put+ Payoff of lower middle strike Short Put + Payoff of higher middle strike Short Call + Payoff of higher strike Long Call 
Explanation of the Strategy
A Short Iron Condor is a strategy that involves buying a lower strike Put, selling a lower middle strike Put, selling a higher middle strike Call, and buying a higher strike Call. Each of these options would have the same underlying instrument and expiration date. Usually, the lower strike and the lower middle strike Puts are OTM Puts, whereas the higher middle strike and the higher strike Calls are OTM Calls. At the time of initiating this strategy, the underlying price is usually somewhere between the two middle strikes. Usually, all the four options are equidistant from each other. That said, this is not a hard and fast rule. Sometimes, to account for a wider maximum profit zone, traders prefer keeping a wider distance between the two middle strikes as compared to the distance between the outer strike and the corresponding middle strike.
A Short Iron Condor is a neutral strategy in terms of direction that works best when the underlying price consolidates. The trader who initiates this strategy would want the underlying price to stay between the two middle strikes until expiration. Hence, it can be said that this strategy is neutral on direction and bearish on volatility. That said, sometimes this strategy can take a slight bullish or bearish tilt. For instance, at the time of initiation, if the underlying price is below the two middle strikes, the strategy would be slightly bullish. On the other hand, if the underlying price is above the two middle strikes, the strategy would be slightly bearish. A Short Iron Condor has two breakeven points: lower and upper. The position is profitable as long as the underlying price is within the two breakeven points and is unprofitable when the underlying price is outside either of the two breakeven points. Both profits and losses under this strategy are limited. Maximum profit occurs when the underlying price is between the two middle strikes, while maximum loss occurs when the underlying either falls below the lower strike or rises above the higher strike.
A Short Iron Condor is a net credit strategy. In terms of the risk reward profile, a Short Iron Condor is quite attractive. In absolute terms, the maximum potential profit under this strategy tends to be larger than the maximum potential loss. As a result, this strategy can be initiated by intermediate option traders as well. Also, as we shall later see, Short Iron Condor has a similar payoff structure as a Long Call Condor or a Long Put Condor. However, there are differences. The major difference is that Long Call/Put Condor are net debit strategies, while a Short Iron Condor is a net credit strategy.
Benefits of the Strategy

This is a net credit strategy

The risk of this strategy tends to be smaller than the potential reward

Time decay benefits the position, as long as it is profitable

Maximum loss under this strategy is limited
Drawbacks of the Strategy

When the underlying price is between the middle strikes, rise in volatility would hurt the position

If the underlying price moves outside one of the two breakeven points, the trader will incur a loss
Strategy Suggestions

Ensure that you expect the underlying to remain in a range and consolidate near the two middle strikes

Ensure that you have a bearish stance on volatility, which you expect to reduce once the position has been initiated

Ensure that the strikes are evenly placed. In other words, see that the distance between the lower and the lower middle strike is equal to that between the higher middle and the higher strike

However, sometimes, traders keep the distance between the lower middle and the higher middle strikes slightly wider than the other two to account for a larger maximum profit zone

The spread between the strikes will be a tradeoff between the risk and the reward

The wider the difference between the adjacent strikes, the higher will be the risk but so would be the reward, and vice versa

Also, the wider the difference between the adjacent strikes, the larger would be the profit making zone, and vice versa

As this is a range bound strategy that benefits from falling volatility, ensure that you execute this strategy when there is less time to expiration, as this would give you less time to go wrong

Ensure there is sufficient liquidity in the underlying that is being chosen to initiate this strategy
Option Greeks for Short Iron Condor
Greek  Notes 
Delta 
Delta is at or near zero at initiation. It tends to peak out above zero when the underlying price is below the lower strike and bottom out below zero when the underlying price is above the higher strike. That said, while Delta does become nonzero as the underlying price moves, it does not deviate much from zero. As such, changes in the price of the underlying do not have much impact on this strategy because of the way it is structured. 
Gamma 
Gamma is negative and is at its lowest point in between the two middle strikes. As the underlying price starts moving away from the midpoint of the two middle strikes and approaches either the lower or the higher strike, Gamma tends to move into positive before peaking out around these extreme strikes. 
Vega 
Vega is negative and is at its lowest point between the two middle strikes, meaning the negative impact of a rise in volatility is the highest around the middle strikes. Volatility hurts as long as the position in profitable. That said, Vega turns positive when the position becomes unprofitable, meaning a rise in volatility now starts helping the position. 
Theta 
Theta is positive and is at its highest point between the two middle strikes, meaning time decay is most helpful around the middle strikes. Time decay benefits the position as long as it is profitable. That said, Theta turns negative when the position becomes unprofitable, meaning time decay now starts hurting the position. 
Payoff of Short Iron Condor
The above is the payoff chart of a Short Iron Condor strategy. Notice that the strategy achieves its maximum profit potential when the underlying price is within the range of the two middle strikes. On the other hand, if the underlying price falls below the lower strike or rises above the higher strike, the strategy achieves its maximum loss potential. Finally, notice that the strategy is profitable when the underlying price is within the two breakeven points and is unprofitable when the underlying price moves outside either of the two breakeven points.
Example of Short Iron Condor
Let us say that Mr. ABC has decided to execute a Short Iron Condor strategy on TCS. The details of the strategy are as below:

Strike price of OTM long Put = 1940

Strike price of OTM short Put = 1980

Strike price of OTM short Call = 2020

Strike price of OTM long Call = 2060

LongPut premium (lower strike) = ₹4

Short Put premium (lower middle strike) = ₹13

Short Call premium (higher middle strike) = ₹24

Long Call premium (higher strike) = ₹9

Net Credit = ₹24 (13 + 24  4  9)

Net Credit (in value terms) = ₹6,000 (24 * 250)

Lower Breakeven point = 1956 (1980  24)

Upper Breakeven point = 2044 (2020 + 24)

Maximum reward = ₹6,000

Maximum risk = ₹4,000 ((1980  1940  24) * 250)
Now, let us assume a few scenarios in terms of where TCS would be on the expiration date and the impact this would have on the profitability of the trade.
Underlying price at Expiration  Net Profit/Loss  Notes 
1700  Loss of ₹4,000  Payoff = [Maximum of (19401700,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19801700,0)] + [24Maximum of (17002020,0)] + [Maximum of (17002060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is below the lower breakeven point, the trader will incur a loss 
1850  Loss of ₹4,000  Payoff = [Maximum of (19401850,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19801850,0)] + [24Maximum of (18502020,0)] + [Maximum of (18502060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is below the lower breakeven point, the trader will incur a loss 
1940  Loss of ₹4,000  Payoff = [Maximum of (19401940,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19801940,0)] + [24Maximum of (19402020,0)] + [Maximum of (19402060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is below the lower breakeven point, the trader will incur a loss 
1950  Loss of ₹1,500  Payoff = [Maximum of (19401950,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19801950,0)] + [24Maximum of (19502020,0)] + [Maximum of (19502060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is below the lower breakeven point, the trader will incur a loss 
1956  No profit, No loss  Payoff = [Maximum of (19401956,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19801956,0)] + [24Maximum of (19562020,0)] + [Maximum of (19562060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is equal to the lower breakeven point, the trader will neither make a profit nor incur a loss 
1970  Profit of ₹3,500  Payoff = [Maximum of (19401970,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19801970,0)] + [24Maximum of (19702020,0)] + [Maximum of (19702060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is between the two break evens, the trader will make a profit 
1980  Profit of ₹6,000  Payoff = [Maximum of (19401980,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19801980,0)] + [24Maximum of (19802020,0)] + [Maximum of (19802060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is between the two break evens, the trader will make a profit 
2000  Profit of ₹6,000  Payoff = [Maximum of (19402000,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19802000,0)] + [24Maximum of (20002020,0)] + [Maximum of (20002060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is between the two break evens, the trader will make a profit 
2020  Profit of ₹6,000  Payoff = [Maximum of (19402020,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19802020,0)] + [24Maximum of (20202020,0)] + [Maximum of (20202060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is between the two break evens, the trader will make a profit 
2030  Profit of ₹3,500  Payoff = [Maximum of (19402030,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19802030,0)] + [24Maximum of (20302020,0)] + [Maximum of (20302060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is between the two break evens, the trader will make a profit 
2044  No profit, No loss  Payoff = [Maximum of (19402044,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19802044,0)] + [24Maximum of (20442020,0)] + [Maximum of (20442060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is equal to the upper breakeven point, the trader will neither make a profit nor incur a loss 
2050  Loss of ₹1,500  Payoff = [Maximum of (19402050,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19802050,0)] + [24Maximum of (20502020,0)] + [Maximum of (20502060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is above the upper breakeven point, the trader will incur a loss 
2060  Loss of ₹4,000  Payoff = [Maximum of (19402060,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19802060,0)] + [24Maximum of (20602020,0)] + [Maximum of (20602060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is above the upper breakeven point, the trader will incur a loss 
2150  Loss of ₹4,000  Payoff = [Maximum of (19402150,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19802150,0)] + [24Maximum of (21502020,0)] + [Maximum of (21502060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is above the upper breakeven point, the trader will incur a loss 
2300  Loss of ₹4,000  Payoff = [Maximum of (19402300,0)4]+[13Maximum of (19802300,0)] + [24Maximum of (23002020,0)] + [Maximum of (23002060,0)9]. As the underlying price at expiration is above the upper breakeven point, the trader will incur a loss 
Notice above that maximum profit for this strategy is ₹6,000, which the trader earns when the underlying price stays within the two middle strikes of 1980 and 2020. On the other hand, notice that maximum loss for this strategy is ₹4,000, which occurs when the underlying price either falls below the lower strike of 1940 or rises above the higher strike of 2060. Also observe that with a maximum possible profit of ₹6,000 and a maximum possible loss of ₹4,000, the risk reward for this strategy stands at 1.5 .
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Comments & Discussions in
FYERS Community
dr sennath commented on July 16th, 2020 at 11:15 AM
very good TK
Abhishek Chinchalkar commented on July 18th, 2020 at 7:53 AM
Hi Dr Sennath, thank you for you valuable feedback!
VIJAY NARVEKAR commented on July 28th, 2020 at 10:26 PM
Sir , These all strategies are available on many webside on google. Please ,you teach how to manage any strategy went against your direction. Management is very important.
Thanks
Abhishek Chinchalkar commented on July 31st, 2020 at 8:16 AM
Hi Vijay, be rest assured that we will cover more content on options in future!