Time has always been a factor in validating results of any Option trade we do. Importance of Time comes into picture for two reasons:
1. Option Premium being positively co-related with Time left for expiry
2. Our profitability depends on Option Premium (Obviously)
While so much of our attention is on the price of the underlying stock or index whose option we are buying, we also need to pay enough attention to the Time as well. With two decades of history in the F&O market, we have come a long way.
Most of us now know that Options, if held for a long time will reduce in value due to passage of time. For us to make money, the impact of price of the Underlying over time will have to compensate for the reduction in Option Premium due to time.
This is most commonly and rightly dealt with by keeping a Time Stop Loss by many of us Option Traders. The passage of time-led reduction in Premium or Time Decay has two key characteristics. These characteristics help us shape our trades even better by making it more dynamic.
#1 Speed of Time Decay: Time Decay has always been compared with the Rent that we pay; more the time to expiry, more expensive Option Premium. However, there is a difference. Difference is the speed to Time Decay.
Let us understand with an example. If you Rent a House for 12 months. Rent per month is 10,000 and the whole year is 120,000. With Option Premium Time Decay is lower for first few days, then it accelerates as the Expiry Date of the Option Contract comes closer. Time Decay is highest closest to the Day of Expiry.
So, replace Rent with Time Decay. Out of 120,000. 1st Month which is beginning of the 12 months contract will have the least rent and last month will have the most rent.
How does it impact us?
To all of us who keep Time Stop Loss for our Buy Option Trades, we can be more generous in keeping Time Stop Loss (SL) in the beginning of the expiry and a little tighter towards the end of the expiry.
One formula that has worked for me is:
Time Stop Loss in Days = No. of Weeks Remaining for Expiry.
4-Days’ Time SL for start of the month and Intra-Day Square off in the Week of Expiry (Since, there are no weeks left for Expiry).
#2 1st Expiry + 2nd Expiry > 2 Expiries: This is one more thing that one should always keep in mind for the times when we Buy Option keeping the entire Premium as Stop Loss.
Trade Set Up is like this, 100 Call @ 3.5 bought with underlying at 100 and Target in Underlying at 110.So, if my target comes by expiry, I will make 6.5 (110-100-3.5) justifying the risk of entire premium going to 0 with no stop loss.
Let’s go back to the characteristic and see what it means and how can it help.For Example,
60 Days to Expiry 100 Call = 4.9
This means that if I am going to be holding on to the Option for 60 days, I am better off buying 60 Days expiry Option then 30 Days expiry Option Twice.
Sounds like a good piece of information, but where do we use it?
Well, if you feel that Nifty Option you are planning to Buy is expected to yield result in 2 weeks, I will straightaway buy the 2nd week option and save on the Option Premium.
These are couple of key characteristics and tricks to profit from them. They have helped me optimize my option trades profitability.1. Speed to Time Decay
2. 1 + 1 > 2Disclaimer: The views and investment tips expressed by investment experts on Moneycontrol.com are their own and not those of the website or its management. Moneycontrol.com advises users to check with certified experts before taking any investment decisions.
The ed-tech unicorn has been on a cost-conserving mode; it asked more than 600 employees in May to leave the company. Months before, it had discovered that it had been overpaying some vendors over the past year, according to two people familiar with the details. “The nexus was flagged when a new employee, a project lead, joined the team," one of the people cited above said. When the employee was found rushing the payment processes for the vendor, the antennae went up. An interrogation revealed that the employee had received around 10% of the total ₹2 crore contract upfront as a bribe and had been promised twice that amount after full payment, the person said.
In an internal email accessed by Mint, Vedantu notes that there was a “tacit understanding" between various vendors and “certain employees", causing the firm to cancel several vendor contracts. In at least one instance, the company was able to recover the bribe. Vedantu declined to comment on the extent of the scam or how many employees were involved. “As a philosophy, we have zero tolerance for corruption or acts leading to it," a company spokesperson said.
This is not the only instance. The dirty tricks department is on an overdrive in the startup world. From kickbacks to inflated bills, circular transactions to shell companies, instances of fraud are showing up all too often. While Vedantu appears to have caught a con running into lakhs of rupees, some of the other startups have unearthed “material" scams running into crores.
“We are seeing an increasing trend of fraud in start-ups perpetrated by internal stakeholders (management or employees) as well as external stakeholders such as vendors and other third parties," said Amit Rahane, partner, forensic and integrity services, Ernst and Young.
In latest instances, fintech business BharatPe fired its cofounder Ashneer Grover accusing him of engaging in misappropriation of company funds. In another instance in April, the board of fashion e-commerce startup Zilingo fired its co-founder and chief executive Ankiti Bose, citing “financial irregularities". BharatPe and Zilingo did not provide additional comments beyond their public statements.
The boom is partly to blame, as the easy money only encouraged easy ethics. To compound this, many investors were lax in diligence in latest years. This was especially true in 2021, when deals would close in a matter of a week. Even after their investments, most investors pushed for “growth at any cost", executives said.
“Many did not conduct extensive due diligence in the last two years because of the funding frenzy," Saket Bhartia, managing director, Kroll, forensic investigations and intelligence, said. What that means, says Bhartia, is that the next few quarters might throw up more revelations of fraud and governance issues.
The circular transactions
A common way that investors were fooled last year was when their portfolio companies padded up revenues, four people who have seen this pattern play out said, asking to remain anonymous.
One way to do this is when a company, under pressure to show higher revenue, sells goods to a fictitious customer. For instance, Company A sells goods to Customer B for ₹100. How is the money routed back? Vendor C—an entity related to B— charges Company A ₹110 for an unrelated service, such as for designing the company’s website. Company A ends up with a higher topline which it can report to its shareholders or pitch to new investors (paying for the unrelated service is an expense that impacts Company A’s operating margins and thereby, profitability).
It is also important to distinguish between an employee defrauding the company, and a company deceiving its shareholders, an early-stage investor said, asking to remain anonymous. Typically, this is a matter of disclosure and can be assessed by the action taken by the company once fraud is flagged.
Sometimes the distinction can get blurred. In another oft-used technique, Company A may approach a real vendor which has an existing business relationship with a customer. It may encourage the vendor to route supplies to the customer through Company A’s marketplace so that it is able to show higher revenues to its shareholders.
To persuade the vendor, the marketplace may agree to provide a discount. But, here’s the catch: the movement of goods is only on paper. “If there is no movement of goods from vendor to the marketplace to the customer, then the transaction was clearly bogus," one of the people cited above said, declining to name the marketplace. In both examples cited above, Company A is making a loss and likely showing poor cash flow, but a growing topline.
But this kind of fraud might be increasingly hard to pull off, thanks to the goods and sales tax (GST) regime which traces all transactions, said Kroll’s Bhartia. If a startup showed that it had sold goods to a fictitious customer, the tax department has enough data on hand to demand that the customer pay GST.
In a scathing note issued in March, the income tax department accused a Thane and Pune-based unicorn involved in the sale of construction materials—which later emerged as Infra.Market—of allegedly booking bogus purchases and creating shell companies. It said the startup had made huge unaccounted cash expenditure and obtained accommodation entries totalling over ₹400 crore. (Tax authorities use the phrase “accommodation entries" to refer to fake entries.)
“Directors of the group have admitted to this modus operandi and disclosed additional income of more than ₹224 crore in various assessment years, and consequently offered to pay their due tax liability," the statement said. This might just mean the tax department suspected Infra.Market of evading tax by underreporting income.
The shell entities the department allegedly uncovered also suggest a round of circular transactions. “During the search operation, a hawala network of some Mumbai and Thane-based shell companies was also unearthed. They were allegedly created only for the purpose of providing accommodation entries," the tax department said. Preliminary analysis showed that the total fake entries allegedly provided by these shell entities exceeded ₹1,500 crore, the department said. Infra.Market did not respond to requests for clarifications.
Startup executives have created fake entities for other purposes too. In February this year, a leaked Alvarez and Marsal audit report on BharatPe had alleged that one of the shareholders had routed company hires through an entity created by a relative. The board of the company later accused its co-founder and his family of misappropriation of company funds.
The fraud triangle
But why do founders cross the line? Academic studies going back to half a century say that scams are usually found at the intersection of ‘pressure’, ‘opportunity’ and ‘rationalization’. Executives under pressure to do more or show more growth may view an opportunity for deception as a temporary fix. Or they may simply rationalize their behaviour: Why shouldn’t they be entitled to this money if they have founded the company? Often, this starts as a small misdemeanor and over time, it adds up to fraud.
Shareholders or founders may also find that they are actually cash poor. They may not have taken ‘secondaries’ (meaning avoided selling some of their equity for cash payout) and earn a lesser salary compared to their peers. “Here is when embezzlement can happen. We start seeing founders charge the company with high personal expenses because they think that they deserve this," Kroll’s Bhartia said.
And so, investors are asking questions about founder salaries and auditing practices, and also scrutinizing how startups report revenues, acquire customers.
As a funding squeeze shifts investor focus from ‘growth at all costs’ to ‘profitability’, instances of startups deferring costs to the next quarter are also growing, say executives.
If a startup needs to pay a vendor, they may defer it to next month if they can, so that they are able to report higher margins for that month to their investors, one of the people cited initially said, asking to remain anonymous. This may blindside incoming investors ahead of a fundraise. Founders tend to defer costs out of the hope that they may be able to absorb the expenses in the next quarter, if they are able to manage higher sales.
“Lapses in corporate governance may be a starting point for fraud as it’s not easy to distinguish between an irregularity and serious fraud without a control framework," EY’s Rahane said.
In one example, a marketplace may double or add items to a customer’s bill to show higher gross margin value, but may not have actually shipped the goods. It happens a lot more when there is cash on delivery, a person who had seen this play out said, asking to be anonymous.
“A good way to assess would be to match the sold goods reported by the company with the goods shipped by the logistics company. Typically, there are discrepancies with FMCG startups," the person said, asking to remain anonymous.
In another instance, this person had found a company reporting revenue from a customer that far exceeded the total turnover reported by the customer in its own financial statements. Sometimes, the customer payment is due 90 days after the revenue is booked, making revenue reconciliation harder, the person said, calling for deeper forensic diligence post-investment.
“Hyper growth or de-growth in revenue is usually a red flag, though it may not be fraud," said Bhartia. “Other red flags include frequent change in management and auditors, and incomplete audits – or if companies change the parameters of the metrics that need to be reported to investors often," he added.
Some instances are harder to call out. For example, say a company has an option to buy three target entities and finally picks one. But the company had an investor who was linked to the target company through personal connections, or may have even benefited from the trade financially, indirectly. Even if the company had a reason to purchase the target company, it would certainly be unethical, if not fraud, if this connection is not disclosed, two investors said.
The mad investor rush
Ten years ago, an investor made several trips with a food delivery executive as part of his diligence process before making an investment into the food delivery startup. Now, this is work outsourced to third party vendors, where a junior associate makes a few calls, the investor lamented.
The ecosystem to conduct diligence and forensic work has grown, allowing for investors to seek better outside help in scrutinizing potential investments. But investors typically have sought to run a forensic investigation only after they have begun to suspect fraud, a second investor said.
Only a few startups have one of the big four as an external auditor, this investor added. Thus a lot of discrepancies, which could have been caught if there were stronger controls within the startups, have cropped up only after external auditors have started examining accounts.
“The pandemic saw a shift toward greater reliance on third-party vendors, with little or limited oversight, thereby widening gaps in compliance and control leading to fraud, waste and abuse," EY’s Rahane added.
Some of this has come to a halt in latest months because of the pullback in the funding ecosystem and the overall difficult macro environment.
One investor, whose portfolio company was in the news for having conducted a forensic investigation, said that the balance was shifting back in favour of investors—and doing more diligence. “I am happy that we are back to doing things the way it used to be", he added.
“It boils down to the integrity of the founder," the first investor cited above said, adding that it was better to walk away than hitch a ride with a dishonest founder or management.
Using technology to run your business can help you in all sorts of ways, from making your employees’ and customers’ lives easier to helping you keep tabs on your product or service once it hits the market. You can use social media to stay in touch with international clients and use software like an Amazon repricer to automate your amazon pricing remotely. Therefore, to ensure you are running a successful business you need to be using technology to your advantage. In this article you will learn some tips and tricks that will make sure your new tech helps you reach your goals.
6 Ways Technology Can Help You Run a More Successful Business
1) Virtual Assistant
While a virtual assistant isn’t exactly technology, the only reason you can hire one is tech. A virtual assistant can take care of all the little tasks that eat up your time, like scheduling appointments, answering emails, and social media management. This frees you up to focus on the big picture and work on growing your business. You can also hire someone who aligns more with your goals and who you know will gain the most value from you from a completely different part of the world. Make sure to integrate Trello and Slack, among other software to help you navigate the relationships more efficiently.
2) Automated Systems
In today’s business world, automation is key to success. By automating various tasks and processes, you can free up time and resources to focus on more important things. Automated systems can also help Strengthen efficiency and accuracy, while reducing costs. For example using a computerised ordering system. These systems work by automatically taking orders from customers online or over the phone. All customer information is stored in one place, meaning that all orders can be processed quickly and accurately with minimal human intervention.
3) Team Communication
In order to run a successful business, it is important to have strong communication among your team. Technology can help facilitate this by providing various communication tools such as instant messaging, video conferencing, and project management software. These tools allow you to talk face-to-face with other members of your team regardless of where they are located, eliminating the need for people in different offices or countries to be tied up on the phone. They also allow you to send messages and files instantly without having to worry about using up time on your monthly email quota.
4) Document Management
In the business world, paper documents can quickly become overwhelming. Not only do you have to keep track of physical files, but you also have to make sure they’re properly organised and up-to-date. This is where document management software comes in. This type of software allows you to scan and store all your documents electronically, so you can access them from anywhere and share them with anyone with just a few clicks.
5) Digital Marketing Tools
There are a number of digital marketing tools available that can help you reach your target market more effectively. You can use a variety of social media platforms to garner a strong community. You can also create a blog or website and gather emails through email marketing platforms like Mailchimp.
6) Financial Planning Tools
If you want to be successful in business, you need to have a clear understanding of your finances. Technology can help by giving you access to tools that make financial planning easier. For example, you can use accounting software to track your income and expenses, create invoices and manage your budget.
EDITOR NOTE: This is a promoted post and should not be considered an editorial endorsement
Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash
Increasing productivity and focus is something most professionals strive for. But while there are different tricks and tips for being more productive and focused on your work, the tips don’t always work for every person. The key is to find advice that works for you and your lifestyle.
Here, nine Young Entrepreneur Council members share the habits they try to instill in their teams to help them be more productive and focused. Try out their recommendations and see which is most effective for you.
1. Develop A Morning And Evening Routine
I think developing a habit for starting and ending your day is helpful in creating a routine and setting you up to be productive. Starting your day entails taking time to review your email, update your to-do list and prioritize the work for the day. Ending your day is a process that includes doing a final review of your email, reviewing your day and your to-do list progress and planning for the next day. These processes create a system of “plan, do, review, repeat” and allow you to be more organized, more deliberate with your time and more productive. - Zane Stevens, Protea Financial
2. Prioritize Activity As Well As Rest
Try to do some physical activity at least one hour per day to keep your energy level optimal. Moreover, I believe it is essential that we do not forget to rest. Teach your team the importance of taking at least one day a week to rest. This will help them, in the long run, to avoid burnout and keep a good social life. When you’re a leader, it is always crucial to take care of your people, and we have to remember that, without them, we wouldn't be able to do many things we take for granted from time to time. No meaningful and helpful project was ever built alone. We must remember that behind every successful entrepreneur lies a team that fought beside them. - Alexandru Stan, Tekpon
3. Focus On Energy Management
I recommend my team start the day at their highest possible self with a calm mind (I always encourage them to find a routine and say affirmations), then focus on energy management when scheduling the day's tasks. I find that the best time of day for me to do focused work is in the morning, before lunch. This is when I'm most energetic, and my mind is clear from distractions. I block out a couple of hours each morning for meaningful work and then take a break for lunch. In the afternoon, I'll usually do more administrative tasks or tackle projects that require less concentration. Be proactive. Get your most important things done early and quickly so that you're not allowing tasks to take over your entire schedule. Once you find your most effective routine, stick to it and then become a master at it. - Tonika Bruce, Lead Nicely, Inc.
4. Change Up Your Work Environment
I deliver my team members the flexibility to switch up their work environment. In fact, I encourage them to do so, especially if that helps them increase their productivity. Even if it means they have to leave the office to work at their favorite coffee shop, whatever helps them be more productive is fine with me. Some of my team members like to work outside if the weather permits. Something as simple as having a standing desk can work too. - John Hall, Calendar
5. Add Tasks To A Calendar
Don't just have a to-do list; schedule tasks in your calendar so you know when you're going to tackle each project. It's easier to focus when you have a schedule rather than looking at your list and wondering what to do first. Of course, you also need to be flexible, as sometimes you'll have to make adjustments if there's an emergency or if an urgent new task suddenly appears. In such cases, change your schedule accordingly. You can use an app such as HourStack or Sunsama for time blocking, or you can write it down manually—whatever works best for you. - Kalin Kassabov, ProTexting
6. Work On Effective Time Management
One habit I recommend my team build to be more productive and focused is effective time management. We’re a fully remote company, and everyone is responsible for managing their own time. Some of us are early birds, others complete night owls, but with that flexibility comes the need for effective time management skills to ensure the work gets done on time and to a high standard. One way I help my team achieve this is by keeping our team and one-on-one check-ins to set days during the week so they know what to plan around and everyone has the space to dive into deep work. - Diana Goodwin, MarketBox
7. Schedule Time For Deep Focus
I expect my team and myself to be high performers, so I adamantly recommend scheduling "deep focus" at whatever time best suits your personal workflow. This means you do not schedule meetings during this time and are not doing menial tasks like answering emails or even looking at your phone. The purpose of this time is to complete the biggest and most detailed tasks on your list. If you can be disciplined enough to shut out the world for at least two hours per workday, you will move the needle forward in an exponential way. A big part of implementing this type of work is setting up a culture that understands and highly regards this time. If it is adopted and valued by C-suite to entry-level roles, you will see your company's productivity skyrocket overall and employees thrive in their positions. - Nic DeAngelo, We Buy Loans Fast
8. Make A Daily Goal List
If someone is having trouble focusing, I recommend starting with something simple like setting a daily goal list to increase their clarity and sense of purpose. To focus on one task at a time, I suggest using the Pomodoro technique, where you work for 25 minutes and then take a five-minute break. By creating focus and making small changes, you can work on building good habits that last, rather than making radical changes that are difficult to maintain. - Syed Balkhi, WPBeginner
9. Communicate Your Needs
Being in the habit of communicating your needs with your team helps create an environment where you can succeed and be productive. Over time, our preferences and needs may change. A project that once inspired us may no longer do so. It may, in turn, be difficult to be productive and focused on something that we no longer enjoy or are inspired by. By recognizing this change in needs and communicating it to your team, a collaborative solution can be found that can help reinvigorate you, bringing back your passion and, with it, your productivity. It may be focusing on a different part of the project that is more inspiring and challenging, or even moving to a different team altogether that returns your sense of joy and excitement. Being in tune with your needs and communicating them is key. - Akshar Bonu, The Custom Movement
More than one in 10 UK consumers have fallen victim to payments fraud in the past four years, according to new research.
A study from global payments business ACI Worldwide found that online fraud and digital wallet hacks account for around 20 per cent of fraud cases in the UK.
It shows that the number of people falling victim to confidence tricks has jumped to nearly 13 per cent of fraud cases.
"As more consumers rely on digital and real-time payments, fraudsters are increasingly targeting the online space to steal sensitive information and top up any missing pieces by impersonating well-known organisations such as banks or government bodies,” said Jackie Barwell, director, fraud product management, ACI Worldwide. “The advent of Open Banking and decentralised financial services offers additional room for the problem to grow.”
The report reveals that new kinds of fraud, like digital account hacking, social engineering, and identity theft, are becoming increasingly common.
Research from UK Finance found that British fraud victims lost £1.3 billion in 2021 as online fraud increased, with authorised push payment (APP) scams increasing by nearly 40 per cent.
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