Building a Diversified Stock Portfolio using Long Calendar Spreads


Diversification of assets is the cornerstone of any successful financial plan and investment strategy. For seasoned investors and newcomers, the concept of not putting your eggs all in one hat is a good idea. While the traditional method of diversification involves a mixture of stocks and bonds as well as other assets, trading options offer a unique approach to diversification through strategies such as a long calendar.

We will explore in this article the concept of long-term calendar spreads and how they are used to build a diversified stock portfolio effectively. By the conclusion, you will have an improved understanding of how to use this options strategy to complement your investment strategy.

Understanding Long Calendar Spreads

A long-spread calendar is also known as a time spread or horizontal split. It involves buying and selling option contracts at the same strike but with different expiration. This strategy applies to both call and put options. Its primary aim is to maximize the time value of options and generate income or mitigate risk.

The main components in a long-term calendar spread include

  • A Long Position: This consists of buying an options contract with a longer expiration date. The long position has the advantage of a slow, steady time decay.
  • The Short Position: You sell a similar strike price option with a shorter expiration. The premium that you receive helps offset the price of your long positions.

Long Calendar Spreads Have Many Benefits

  • Multiplication: The long calendar spreads can diversify a portfolio of investments. You can spread your risk by incorporating different options across various assets and time frames.
  • Income Generator: Long Calendar Spreads can generate income via the premium received by selling short-term options. This income boosts your overall returns.
  • Low Risk:Long calendar spreads carry a low risk. Your initial investment limits your loss to establish the spread.
  • Flexible:Long calendar spreads offer flexibility. They can be adjusted as the market changes, allowing you to adapt to evolving situations.

Long calendar spreads for diversification

Let’s explore using calendar spreads for a diversified stock portfolio.

Asset Class Diversification:

Traditional portfolio diversification is often achieved by combining stocks and fixed-income securities. Incorporating calendar spreads into your portfolio adds another layer. Selecting various underlying assets allows you to spread your risk across different asset classes.

Time Horizon Diversification:

Diversification is not limited to your investment timeframe. A Long calendar spread enables you to hold positions with varying dates of expiration. It means you can position some positions to maximize short-term profits while others will be used for long-term growth.

Bullish and Bearish Forecasts:

Long calendar spreads don’t have to be inherently bullish or bearish. They can be tailored to fit your individual market outlook. If you are confident that an asset will appreciate, a bullish-long call calendar is the way to go. You can also use a calendar spread if you expect the asset to decline. This adaptability lets you diversify your direction bets.


Building a diverse portfolio is an important part of investing. Long calendars allow you to diversify by combining multiple assets, different time frames, and market outlooks. These spreads can enhance the portfolio’s return and income opportunities.

Be aware that options trading has inherent risks. Educate yourself completely before implementing a strategy. Working with a professional financial advisor is a great way to get advice about integrating long-term calendar spreads within your diversified portfolio. By considering your investing goals and risk tolerance, you can use the power of long-term calendar spreads to diversify and reach your financial targets.

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