Business, Legal & Accounting Glossary
A lookback option is a type of exotic option that allows an investor to look back over the period to maturity and determine the ideal execution strategy for the lookback option. There are two primary types of lookback options: fixed and floating. In the case of a fixed lookback option, the investor is allowed to choose the optimal execution point over the entire life of the lookback option, with the strike price being predefined. Whereas with a floating lookback option, the strike price of the option is automatically set at the highest or lowest price of the underlying over the lookback option’s life. The flexibility offered by the lookback option significantly decreases the chance that the lookback option will expire worthlessly. However, at the same time, this flexibility also makes lookback options one of the most expensive types of exotic options. Despite the high cost of lookback options, they are valuable in that their flexibility removes the problem of market timing to a certain extent.
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This glossary post was last updated: 10th February, 2020