What is Options Max Pain Theory? Options Max Pain, also known as the "Max Pain Theory," is a hypothesis that suggests that the price of an underlying asset will tend to gravitate towards a certain price, known as the "max pain" price, at the expiration of options contracts on that asset. The max pain price is the strike price at which the greatest number of options contracts would expire worthless, causing the greatest financial "pain" to the options holders. According to the max pain theory, the price of the underlying asset is influenced by the collective actions of options market participants, who may have an incentive to push the price towards the max pain price in order to maximize their own profits. For example, if a large number of call options have been purchased at a particular strike price, the holders of those options may have an incentive to buy the underlying asset in an attempt to push the price up to the strike price. The max pain theory is controversial and has not been proven to be consistently accurate. It is important to note that the price of an underlying asset is influenced by many factors, including supply and demand, economic conditions, and market sentiment, and that options prices are determined by a variety of factors including the price of the underlying asset, the options' expiration date, and the options' implied volatility. Related articles What are Married Puts? What is the JPM Collar? What is Put Call Parity? Covered Call / Call Overwriting What is Put Open Interest?