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New OIC Study Shows Increased Knowledge of Listed Options by Investors

CHICAGO (October 20, 2015) - The Options Industry Council (OIC), the educational cooperative run by OCC, the world's largest equity derivatives clearing organization, and the U.S. options industry, today released the results of a new study conducted by Harris Poll that shows that industry efforts to educate investors about the use of listed options are generating positive results.

Harris Poll conducted the 2015 OIC Study of Investors online from February 2 through July 22, 2015, among 964 investors. The study found that options users are passionate, active investors who are more likely to increase their trading of options than their trading of either stocks or bonds over the next year. A lack of understanding or knowledge is the major stumbling block preventing non-users from trading options now.

"OIC's mission is to help educate investors on the responsible use of listed options," said Scot Warren, OCC Executive Vice President of Business Development and OIC. "Due in large part to our educational programs and outreach, investors are becoming increasingly aware that listed options are a versatile financial risk management tool. As a result, investors' use of options has grown dramatically. Total trading volume of listed options in 1995 was 1.1 million contracts - an amount that is surpassed within the first half hour of trading today where the average daily volume exceeds 16 million contracts."

Options trading volume in 2014 was up 4 percent over 2013, marking the second best volume year in history and the fourth consecutive year options volume passed 4 billion contracts. Also, in August 2015, two top ten trading volume days were recorded with options trading volume reaching 39.4 million contracts on August 21 and 32 million contracts on August 24, marking the third and ninth highest volume days.

According to the study, 85 percent of listed options users consider themselves to be extremely knowledgeable investors compared to 66 percent of non-users. Additionally, users of listed options are much more likely than non-users to use a wider range of risk management tools, especially ETFs/investment trusts, ADRs, gold and futures/commodities. Furthermore, they are more likely to be early adopters of new products.

OIC sponsored this study by Harris Poll, as well as similar studies every five years since 1995, to better assess the interest level, knowledge and use of listed options by investors. This helps OIC better direct its listed options education efforts with investors on behalf of the listed options industry.

To access this study, visit:

About the Study

This 2015 Study of Investors was conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of OIC between February 2 and July 22, 2015 among 964 investors. Interviews were conducted among 622 Options Users and 342 Non-Options Users. Investors were customers from five participating brokerage firms that attract self-directed investors. A more complete description of the study's methodology can be found in the Methodology section of the full report.

About OIC

The Options Industry Council (OIC) is an industry cooperative funded by OCC, the world's largest equity derivatives clearing organization and sole central clearinghouse for U.S. listed options, and the U.S. options exchanges. OIC's mission is to provide free and unbiased education to investors and financial advisors about the benefits and risks of exchange-traded equity options. Managed by OCC, OIC delivers its education through the Options Education Program, a structured platform offering live seminars, self-directed online courses, mobile tools, podcasts, webinars and live help. OIC's resources can be accessed online at or via mobile app for iOS.

About OCC

OCC is the world's largest equity derivatives clearing organization and the foundation for secure markets. Founded in 1973, OCC operates under the jurisdiction of both the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as a Registered Clearing Agency and the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) as a Derivatives Clearing Organization. OCC now provides central counterparty (CCP) clearing and settlement services to 16 exchanges and trading platforms for options, financial futures, security futures and securities lending transactions. More information about OCC is available

About Harris Poll

Over the last 5 decades, Harris Polls have become media staples. With comprehensive experience and precise technique in public opinion polling, along with a proven track record of uncovering consumers' motivations and behaviors, Harris Poll has gained strong brand recognition around the world. Contact for more information.

Media Contacts:

Angela Kotso


Harris Poll
David Krane