Soros Fund Management, the asset management company founded by billionaire George Soros, has doubled its put on the S&P 500 stock index, according to its filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The hedge fund said Monday it owned a put option of 2.1 million shares on the SPDR S&P 500 exchange-traded fund (ETF), which tracks the benchmark U.S. index, in the first quarter of 2016. Put options entitle the holder to sell an asset at a particular price. In the fourth quarter of 2015, Soros had a 1 million share put option on the ETF.
The S&P 500 index rallied sharply from the middle of February but has pared some gains this month.
Put options can be a bearish bet that an asset is going to decline. However, they can also be a hedge for a separate long position — when a fund has a separate option on which it will profit if the price of the security rises.