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Margin Exercise

Using a margin loan to exercise options so that no shares or cash are employed to exercise the options. As long as the exercise cost (plus tax) does not exceed 50% of the current market value of the stock, most brokerage firms will finance these costs with a loan at their margin rate.

Though margin loans increase your stock-buying power, they come with significant disadvantages, particularly when volatile stocks are used as the collateral. They should be tried only by employees with high risk tolerance and may be frowned upon or prohibited by your company.

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