The cash-settled ISE 250 Index (IXZ) tracks the top 250 U.S. stocks listed for trading on the NYSE, AMEX, and NASDAQ, ranked by market capitalization []. The companies represented have an adjusted market capitalization of approximately $9 trillion.
To be eligible for inclusion in the ISE 250 index, a company must:
- Be a U.S. company -- Several factors are considered including, but not limited to registration location, accounting principles used for financial reporting, and location of headquarters.
- Have common stock listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), American Stock Exchange (AMEX), or Nasdaq National Market System (NASDAQ). Initial Public Offerings must be listed for at least 6 months.
- Have adequate liquidity and price. The ratio of cumulative shares traded to adjusted shares outstanding must be greater than 0.3 over the past 12 months. For companies listed less than 12 months but more than 6 months the average daily volume is used to estimate the cumulative shares traded in a 12-month period.
- Have a public float of at least 50% of the stock.
- Be an operating company and not a closed-end fund, exchange-traded fund (ETF), holding company, investment vehicle, or royalty trust. Real estate investment trusts (REITs) are eligible.
- American Depository Receipts (ADRs) and American Depository Shares (ADSs) are not eligible.
Brief look at specifications:
- Index multiplier: $100 (e.g., options premiums are multiplied by 100 to obtain the actual premium amount).
- Strike price intervals: At least $2.50.
- Minimum trading increments: The minimum trading increment for an options contract trading at less than $3.00 is $0.05. The minimum trading increment for an options contract trading at $3.00 or higher is $0.10.
- Expiration Months: Up to three near-term months followed by three additional months from the March quarterly cycle (March, June, September and December).
- Exercise Style: European exercise -- options generally may be exercised only on the last business day before expiration.
- Trading hours: 9:30 A.M. - 4:15 P.M. Eastern Time (New York time).