What is a Russian Option?

A Russian option is a type of lookback option which does not have an expiration date.

How Does a Russian Option Work?

As a lookback option, a Russian option may be exercised according to American or mid-Atlantic settlement rules based on the underlying security's most profitable market price during the life of the option. Russian options differ from other lookback options in that they do not comprise an expiration date.

Why Does a Russian Option Matter?

Without an expiration date, a Russian option gives the holder the freedom to exercise when he feels the underlying security has reached the most beneficial level regardless of how short or how long the holding period. In this respect, Russian options are recommended for seasoned investors due to the potential for high risk if held over long periods of time.