Non-standard (NS) Options

Corporate actions such as stock splits can result in options positions becoming non-standard (NS for short). Non-standard options chains will be located in a different area than the default standard chain.

What does NS stand for?

A non-standard option

Generally, equity options exercise or assign for 100 shares of stock. However, whenever there is a reverse split, a spin-off, or corporate action, this can cause options to turn non-standard, which may result in a sub-100 share delivery as well as a cash component, a right, etc. Positions that have an "NS" next to it denotes a non-standard delivery option, as pictured below. To learn more about what happens to options after a split, including how to calculate the underlying price, then please click here.

You cannot create any opening orders on non-standard options. This includes rolling. Any open options position that turns into non-standard options can only be closed.

Where can I view the NS Options Chain?

Desktop Platform

Non-standard options do not display by default in the trade tab of the desktop platform or web-browser platform. Instead, as a result of the split, a new set of standard options are displayed reflecting new strike prices. Accessing non-standard options is easy and just requires an extra step. Additionally, if the underlying has experienced more than one reverse split in recent history, then you may see more than one non-standard set of options. Non-standards are numbered sequentially. The most recent split has the lowest number, typically 1, and splits that occurred earlier are bumped to a greater number.

Video detailing how to select the non-standard options chain dropdown on the desktop platform

Managing non-standard options positions is just like managing a standard options positions. However, when options become non-standard they generally become less liquid, and you may be subject to slippage when closing (unfavorable closing price). To learn how to close an options position, please click here. Lastly, if you're curious about what happened that caused your "standard" option to become non-standard, then please visit the Options Clearing Corporation (OCC) information memos site. Just type in the symbol into the keyword field.

Web-based platform

Filter and manage deliverables related to NS Options directly within the Trade table. To locate the Deliverables Filter, first navigate to the Trade table in Table Mode for the underlying symbol with applicable NS Options deliverables.

Location of Options Table on Web Platform

The Deliverables Filter will appear between the TRADE MODE and STRIKES drop-downs if the underlying symbol offers NS Options. Next, click on the grey rightward-facing arrow to populate a drop-down menu that lists all available Deliverables (Standard and Non-Standard) for the corresponding underlying symbol. 

Video detailing how to select the non-standard options chain dropdown on the web-based platform