• Mar 2, 2017, 4:19 PM

    Snapchat (SNAP) IPO is Here!

    Snapchat (SNAP) IPO is Here!

    Snapchat is all about sharing who you are in the moment. The Los Angeles based “camera company” (SNAP) went public today at $17 and is now trading around $25 confirming investors like to smile for the camera.  IPO’s can generate as much excitement as a Hollywood movie premier but can sometimes disappoint too. So far today SNAP has proved to be much more than an Adam Sandler movie but over time every stock has a story to tell and SNAP will too. If you have been standing on[...]

  • Earnings | Mar 1, 2017, 4:27 PM

    Earnings Week of 3/6 - 3/10

    Earnings Week of 3/6 - 3/10

    Things are starting to wind down, but there are a few stocks reporting next week with Weeklys available for trading.  As always the data below is based on the last three years of earnings results unless the ticker is in italics.  The columns show the biggest rally, biggest drop, average move, and what the stock did last quarter in reaction to earnings.  Finally, double check the earnings dates as not all were confirmed.

  • Mar 1, 2017, 1:00 PM

    Eight Charts Highlighting Growth in Options and VIX Futures

    Eight Charts Highlighting Growth in Options and VIX Futures

    Below are eight charts, all of which highlight growth related to options markets or VIX® futures. CHART #1 – GROWTH IN OPTIONS VOLUME ON 4 EXCHANGES Aggregate total options volume on four exchanges – Bats, CBOE, C-2, and EDGX – grew 27% from 2012 through 2016 – from 1.24 billion contracts to 1.57 billion contracts.   CHART #2 – GROWTH IN NOTIONAL VALUE OF VOLUME FOR SPX OPTIONS When instititional investors are considering portfolio management tools, often[...]

  • Mar 1, 2017, 11:55 AM

    Strong ETH VIX Option Volume in February

    Strong ETH VIX Option Volume in February

    Despite exceptionally low realized and implied volatility in February, CBOE experienced a massive increase in our VIX options average daily volume during our Extended Trading Hours session.  VIX options ETH ADV was 7,336 contracts per day in February 2017.  This compares to ADV of 1,761 contracts per day in 2016, a 416% increase. February VIX option ETH volume was bolstered by extremely strong sessions to close the month on February 24, February 27, and February 28, demonstrating that[...]

  • Feb 28, 2017, 9:01 AM

    Apple is Slowly Blowing Companies Away

    Apple is Slowly Blowing Companies Away

    The resurgence of Apple the stock has been an amazing turn of events from last summer when the stock appeared to headed down the drain.  It seemed everyone had written a eulogy for the company, saying Apple could only be considered a phone hardware company and nothing else.  The stock is flirting with all time highs now, and since the beginning of 2017 Apple is up a whopping 16% or so, making the biggest company in the world worth well over 600 billion dollars. But what I find fascinating[...]

  • Feb 26, 2017, 3:00 PM

    The Weekly Options Roundup 2/26/17

    The Weekly Options Roundup 2/26/17

    The Weekly News Roundup is your weekly recap of CBOE features, options industry news and VIX Index and volatility-related articles from print, broadcast, online and social media outlets.      VIX Fix:  Three Down… Which Way to Go?     As President Trump continued to deliver on campaign promises this week, investor confidence in the markets remained high and the “Trump Rally” continued on.   The Dow Jones Index saw eleven consecutive[...]

  • Market News | Trader Talk | Feb 25, 2017, 5:22 PM

    Update on The Warren Buffett Put Trades

    Update on The Warren Buffett Put Trades

    A few years ago, I was asked to co-author the study guide that accompanies the 3rd version of The Warren Buffett Way.  While doing research for this project I came across a discussion of a handful of index put options that Berkshire Hathaway had sold between 2004 and 2008.  Every year when the Berkshire Hathaway annual report comes out, I dig in to see how these trades are doing.  Here’s the update as of the end of 2016. Back in 2008, as the financial world was falling apart,[...]

  • Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Feb 25, 2017, 2:54 PM

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 2/21 - 2/24

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 2/21 - 2/24

    Large cap dominance continues as the Russell 1000 (RUI) gained 0.77% last week and the Russell 2000 (RUT) was down 0.38%.  For the year RUI is now outpacing by over 3%. Small cap risk remains high relative to large cap risk as the CBOE Russell 2000 (RVX) premium to VIX remains are elevated levels.  First thing Friday, with RUT under a bit of pressure down about 10 points around 1383 one trader came in with a bull put spread that has a ton of room for error.  They sold the RUT Apr[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Feb 25, 2017, 2:14 PM

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 2/21 - 2/24

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 2/21 - 2/24

    VIX was the only S&P 500 related volatility index that lost value last week.  VXST rose, probably getting a boost from coming off a long weekend.  The longer dated volatility indexes mirrored the action in longer dated VIX futures by moving to the upside.  April seems to be the next month of concern among volatility players with the pending election in France.  Other pockets of volatility are showing up in the table below.  SKEW finished the week near recent highs and[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | Trade Ideas | Feb 25, 2017, 10:46 AM

    Weekend Review of VIX Futures and Options - 2/21 - 2/24

    Weekend Review of VIX Futures and Options - 2/21 - 2/24

    To say that volatility was flat last week is misstating the facts.  Sure, VIX was lower, but wow, look at the rest of the curve.   All contracts were higher with April and May futures leading the way at up over 6%.  For this we will blame France, which I will explain after the VIX Table / Term Structure below. VSTOXX is basically VIX for the European markets.  Specifically, it is an index that calculates a consistent measure of implied volatility as indicated by options[...]

  • Earnings | Feb 24, 2017, 10:23 AM

    Earnings Week of 2/27 - 3/3

    Earnings Week of 2/27 - 3/3

    As always the data below is based on the last three years of earnings results unless the ticker is in italics.  The columns show the biggest rally, biggest drop, average move, and what the stock did last quarter in reaction to earnings.  Finally, double check the earnings dates as not all were confirmed.

  • What's Trading Today - OTM RUT Bull Put Spread

    What's Trading Today - OTM RUT Bull Put Spread

    Today’s What’s Trading focused on a Bull Put Spread using Russell 2000 (RUT) quarter end options expiring on March 31st. For 2017, as of mid-morning today, the S&P 500 (SPX) is up about 3% more than RUT, which is a reversal of year end price action that saw small cap stocks as represented by RUT out performance the SPX by over 10% from election day to December 31st.  Note the elevated level of RUT implied volatility of RUT options as represented by the CBOE Russell[...]

  • Feb 21, 2017, 9:30 AM

    The Old Four Horsemen Are Riding High

    The Old Four Horsemen Are Riding High

    The four horsemen of the Apocalypse were so named in the New Testament of the Bible. They are a symbolic prophecy of the subsequent history of the Roman Empire.  In today's market world we often talk of the leading technology names, or 'horsemen' being Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Alphabet (Google), which form the acronym FANG for which Jim Cramer and I together named this group back in 2013 on an episode of Mad Money.  These are the growth names of the present and future, the best of[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Feb 20, 2017, 7:30 PM

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 2/13 - 2/17

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 2/13 - 2/17

    VXST and VIX managed gains last week while the longer dated volatility indexes (VXV and VXMT) both lost value.  The curve created by charting out VXST, VIX, VXV, and VXMT has been steep for most of 2017 as the shorter dated indexes have been at very low levels.  The price action last week narrowed the angle to more normal levels.  Last week the S&P 500 was up just over 1.5% and VIX rose over 5%.  More on that after the table below.  I ran some numbers and this is[...]

  • Feb 19, 2017, 3:00 PM

    The Weekly Options News Roundup - 2/19/2017

    The Weekly Options News Roundup - 2/19/2017

    The Weekly News Roundup is your weekly recap of CBOE features, options industry news and VIX Index and volatility-related articles from print, broadcast, online and social media outlets.      A Historical View of Histograms In recent weeks, investor interest in strategies that protect portfolios from large losses has begun to rise.  One of the strategies that can be used to manage downside risk, is the iron butterfly strategy, which is benchmarked by the CBOE S&P[...]