Always important when discussing dividends is the fact that, in general, dividend amounts are not always predictable and tend to follow the ups and downs of profitability at each company. In the case of Xerox Corp, looking at the dividend history chart for XRX below can help in judging whether the most recent dividend is likely to continue, and in turn whether it is a reasonable expectation to expect a 2.6% annualized dividend yield.

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Below is a chart showing the trailing twelve month trading history for Xerox Corp, and highlighting in green where the $5 strike is located relative to that history:

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The chart above, and the stock's historical volatility, can be a helpful guide in combination with fundamental analysis to judge whether selling the January 2015 put at the $5 strike for the 3.3% annualized rate of return represents good reward for the risks. We calculate the trailing twelve month volatility for Xerox Corp (considering the last 249 trading day closing values as well as today's price of $8.95) to be 28%. For other put options contract ideas at the various different available expirations, visit the XRX Stock Options page of StockOptionsChannel.com.

In mid-afternoon trading on Friday, the put volume among S&P 500 components was 1.34M contracts, with call volume at 1.34M, for a put:call ratio of 0.73 so far for the day, which is above normal compared to the long-term median put:call ratio of .65. In other words, if we look at the number of call buyers and then use the long-term median to project the number of put buyers we'd expect to see, we're actually seeing more put buyers than expected out there in options trading so far today.

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