The American Put Option and Its Critical Stock Price
The Journal of Finance, 2000

In this paper, Professor David Bunch and co-author Herb Johnson of the University of California, Riverside derive an expression for the critical stock price for the American put. The authors start by expressing the put price as an integral involving first-passage probabilities. This approach yields intuition for Merton’s result for the perpetual put. The authors then consider the finite-lived case. Using (1) the fact that the put value ceases to depend on time when the critical stock price is reached and (2) the result that an American put equals a European put plus an early-exercise premium, we derive the critical stock price.