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This has bugged me for a long time, and I feel like I am missing some information. When I browse Eurex, a derivatives exchange in Europe, I don't see the kinds of liquidity I would expect.

For instance, options on Volkswagon (VOW on Xetra) only go to the strike price of 140 - a mere 20% below the average daily trading price at the time - and the earliest ones expire in 30 days. Where are the weeklies, dailies, and most of all, the liquidity? Volkswagon is one of the biggest publicly traded companies in Germany, and Europe as a whole, so if that one can't attract liquidity, the others will attract less

My real conclusion is that Eurex is not the only equity options exchange for German equities, but I'm not sure.

Where is the liquidity in the equity options market for European, specifically German, equities.

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    It should be noted that the Volkswagen preferential shares (VO3 on Eurex) is part of the DAX index and has a higher volume than the VOW shares. The same is true for the corresponding options. – Pieter Naaijkens Sep 21 '15 at 21:55
  • @PieterNaaijkens thanks! What is the history behind that!? – CQM Sep 21 '15 at 22:54
  • @PieterNaaijkens I am definitely seeing more volume on VO3's options, and the 680% return today is nice, but the 100 strike put would have gain an even greater percent, especially a 100 strike with a shorter expiration, is there another big exchange somewhere with that? – CQM Sep 21 '15 at 22:57
  • Sorry, I do not know why in particular this class of shares is traded more. I think Eurex is the biggest exchange for options on German equities, I'm not sure if there are even others where these options are traded (except maybe for options on ADRs). – Pieter Naaijkens Sep 21 '15 at 23:59
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  • EUREX is the main exchange for German and Swiss Equity Options.
  • Euronext (Amsterdam & Paris) are the main exchanges for options on Dutch and French names
  • ICE is the main exchange for options on UK names; and
  • NASDAQ OMX Nordic is the main exchange for options on Nordic names (Sweden, Finland, etc.)

These exchanges may also trade options for stocks that are listed in other countries where they are multiply listed.

In the low volatility environment, many market makers have left the business as they have been less profitable. As further-away-from-the-money options are less heavily traded and nearer term options have lower premiums, market makers may have less interest in these options (shown by wider spreads and lower quantities).

If you are interested in trading a particular strike, you can always post your order and see if it gets hit by another market participant.

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