OptionVue version 8.56 started shipping June 28, 2019.


New Block Trades Window

A brand-new feature is available in the OptionVue program, allowing users to monitor, in real-time, block trades that are taking place. Subscribers to this special service can open this window from the main menu under Tools | Block Trades. After opening the window and positioning it where you like, type a number in the “Min block size” field. If the stock market is open, entries will start filling in, showing individual stock options and the size of each trade. If the trade took place at the bid price or the ask price, the window also displays an indication of that.

The Block Trades Window

In the illustration above, we entered a Minimum Block Size of 40. We did that just so we could quickly gather a lot of trades and then take a snapshot. In your own use of the program, optimal results may be found by using different block size numbers for different symbols or different markets.

The options trades that will appear in the window are options associated with the universe of stocks and ETFs that you have in your Quotes Display. However, it is possible to narrow the focus to just some of the stocks and ETFs that are in your Quotes Display, by opening the drop-down list and unchecking one or more of the tab names you see there.

Also, it is possible to narrow the focus down to just one stock or a small number of stocks by entering stock symbol(s) into the “Specific Symbol(s)” field, separated by commas or spaces.

To save a snapshot of the entire screen contents to a file (that you may name), click the button. Note that this window can hold a maximum of 500 records, with the newest record at the top and the oldest record at the bottom. To stream all the incoming data to a file, check the “Store to log file” checkbox. This will store data to a file C:\OpVue8\BlockTradesXXXXXX.txt (the default folder for most users), where XXXXXX represents today’s date. Note that transactions stored in this file will be listed from oldest at the top to newest at the bottom.


Here is a description of some of the columns in the display that might need some explanation:

When a trade happens at a price equal to the option’s bid at the time, then you’ll see “[bid]”. Or if rather close to the bid, you see “(bid)”. If a trade happens at a price equal to the ask, you’ll see “[ask]”. Or if rather close to the ask, you’ll see “(ask)”.
The dollar value of the trade.
Today’s cumulative Volume for this option.
The current Open Interest for this option.
Days To Expiration for this option.
The Percentage In-The-Money amount for this option. If negative, the Percentage Out-Of-The-Money amount.
Days To the next expected Earnings announcement. If a negative number, the number of days in the past.

Colors and Bold Characters

  • An option’s description is displayed in blue if it is a call and red if it is a put.
  • Trades that seem to be bullish (calls were bought or puts were sold) are displayed with green shading.
  • Trades that seem to be bearish (calls were sold or puts were bought) are displayed with red shading.
  • When today’s volume is larger than open interest, both of these numbers are displayed in bold.
  • When the size of the trade is larger than open interest, both of these numbers are displayed in bold.

Exporting to Excel

Simply have the “As CSV” checkbox checked, and when you export data, it will be in the .csv file format.

Further Qualifiers

It is possible to restrict posted trades to just options expiring within X number of days, to options which are within a certain percentage of being at-the-money, and to options whose underlying stock is announcing earnings during the next X number of days.

Press the button to see these qualifiers:

Other Good Stuff

Hover the mouse over a particular option symbol to see more information about this option. Double-click an option to automatically open the appropriate Matrix and locate this particular option within the Matrix (The program places a “+1” in the trade field of this option). If the option would not normally be located in the Matrix because the option’s particular strike or expiration would not naturally be “defined”, the program will automatically attempt to create the strike and/or expiration as necessary in order to cover this option. Still, it might be necessary to click a position locator button in order to bring this option into view.

Note that the Block Trades window is a stay-on-top kind of window, and as such, it will always be on top of other windows in the OptionVue program. You can move this window outside of the OptionVue’s main window frame. Also, you can click the “Hide” button to hide this form. It is still collecting data when out of sight. Just click Tools | Block Trades again to bring it back up.


Customers must subscribe to the RealTime service in order to use the new Block Trades window. Also, the Block Trades window will not update while in BackTrader mode.

Other Program Enhancements

  1. In the Matrix, it is possible to select multiple Trade IDs using checkboxes available in the drop-down list.
  2. In the Matrix, In Define AutoStrike, in the Strike Intervals area, the selection “Natural Intervals” was made to work better. For many stocks, the program now displays finer strike intervals.

General Maintenance

  1. Unfortunately going forward we are no longer able to offer eSignal as an interface option.
  2. With OptionVue in BackTrader mode, if the program is closed without first exiting BackTrader mode, the TempBT folder was not being deleted as it should. Now it works correctly. Also, if the program was in BackTrader mode when the user went into Settings | Preferences | BackTrader and changed the first setting from “Store to existing asset files” to “Store to temporary asset files”, the program was not automatically creating the TempBT folder, and this could lead to problems. This was fixed.
  3. When getting quotes from TOS, the parameters “bid size” and “ask size” were not displaying properly in the Matrix. Now they are working ok. Also, weekly crude oil (CL) options and the NQ month-end options were not displaying any quotes in the Matrix. Now they do.