A:

Option quotes are different in price and in volume because identical options can trade on more than one market or exchange. Typically, the main options exchanges in the U.S. are the American, Pacific, Chicago and Philadelphia exchanges. If you were looking at a particular call option with a specific strike price and expiry, it's likely that the option will be trading on more than one exchange but at a different price on each one. Quote providers may be giving you dissimilar information because they are receiving their numbers from different sources. However, while discrepancies do occur between exchanges, the prices will gravitate to a common level if investors look for the lowest quote when buying an option.

(If you are new to the world of options and would like to learn more, check out our Options Basics Tutorial.)

RELATED FAQS
  1. How can I find out which stocks also trade as options?

    The trading of options has become increasingly popular among retail investors as they become aware of the many different ... Read Answer >>
  2. What's the difference between a regular option and an exotic option?

    Before learning about exotic options, you should have a fairly good understanding of regular options. Both types of options ... Read Answer >>
  3. Where can I purchase options?

    In the United States, all options contracts go through one of several options exchanges. An investor must have an account ... Read Answer >>
  4. Do options make more sense during bull or bear markets?

    Understand how options may be used in both bullish and bearish markets, and learn the basics of options pricing and certain ... Read Answer >>
  5. Do you have to be an expert investor to trade put options?

    Learn about investing in put options and the associated risks. Explore how options can provide risk, which is precisely defined ... Read Answer >>
  6. Does the seller (the writer) of an option determine the details of the option contract?

    The quick answer is yes and no. It all depends on where the option is traded. An option contract is an agreement between ... Read Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. Professionals

    Options

    Options
  2. Options & Futures

    Getting Acquainted With Options Trading

    Learn more about stock options, including some basic terminology and the source of profits.
  3. Professionals

    Exchange Traded Options

    CFA Level 1 - Exchange Traded Options. Contrasts over the counter options from those traded on the exchange. Discusses the characteristics of many exchange traded options.
  4. Professionals

    THE OPTIONS MARKETS

    The Options Markets Standardized options trade on exchanges through a dual auction process similar to that for listed stocks. All standardized options are known as listed options. However, large ...
  5. Options & Futures

    Types of Options

    There are many different types of options. In addition to general put options and call option, we will discuss 13 different types of options. Some of these option types are better suited to day ...
  6. Forex

    Forex Options

    Stocks are not the only securities underlying options. Learn how to use FOREX options for profit and hedging.
  7. Options & Futures

    Exploring The World Of Exotic Options

    Exotic options provide investors with new alternatives to manage their portfolio risks and speculate on various market opportunities. The pricing for such instruments is considerably complex, ...
  8. Professionals

    The Options Markets

    Standardized options trade on exchanges through a dual auction process similar to that for listed stocks. All standardized options are known as listed options. However, large institutions may ...
  9. Options & Futures

    Stock Options: What's Price Got To Do With It?

    A thorough understanding of risk is essential in options trading. So is knowing the factors that affect option price.
  10. Options & Futures

    Options Basics: How To Read An Options Table

    Sponsor: At last, an easy way to predict stock trends – get your FREE copy of 5 Chart Patterns You Need to Know. By Jay Kaeppel As more and more traders have learned of the multitude of ...
RELATED TERMS
  1. Optionable Stock

    A stock that has options trading on a market exchange. Not all ...
  2. Exchange-Traded Option

    An option traded on a regulated exchange where the terms of each ...
  3. Exotic Option

    An option that differs from common American or European options ...
  4. Call On A Put

    One of the four types of compound options, this is a call option ...
  5. Listed Option

    An option that is sold on a registered exchange, such as the ...
  6. Option Class

    The set of all the call options or all the put options for a ...

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Cost Of Debt

    The effective rate that a company pays on its current debt. This can be measured in either before- or after-tax returns; ...
  2. Yield Curve

    A line that plots the interest rates, at a set point in time, of bonds having equal credit quality, but differing maturity ...
  3. Stop-Limit Order

    An order placed with a broker that combines the features of stop order with those of a limit order. A stop-limit order will ...
  4. Keynesian Economics

    An economic theory of total spending in the economy and its effects on output and inflation. Keynesian economics was developed ...
  5. Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications ...

    A member-owned cooperative that provides safe and secure financial transactions for its members. Established in 1973, the ...
  6. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles - GAAP

    The common set of accounting principles, standards and procedures that companies use to compile their financial statements. ...
Trading Center