• Market News | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Aug 29, 2016, 4:55 PM

    Trade Analysis - Short Term Bullish Spread With SPX Monday Weeklys

    Trade Analysis - Short Term Bullish Spread With SPX Monday Weeklys

    On Friday I received an email from a student who had recently attended one of the CBOE Options Institute courses.  They (I’m gender neutral to protect their identity) wanted to let me know that they had made the jump into SPX Monday Weeklys.  With the S&P 500 at 2166 they expressed a bullish outlook with respect to the stock market through initiating a bull call spread.   The specific trade involved buying the SPX Aug 29th 2160 Call for 10.80 and selling the SPX[...]

  • Market News | Education | Aug 29, 2016, 12:52 PM

    Turn Up the Volume

    Turn Up the Volume

    As we wind down the dog days of summer, the usual complaints are heard daily about markets:  volatility is low, the markets don't move, volume is pathetic, the action is too thin to trade.  Well, I can certainly understand the concern, and with a VIX settling in just under 14% for nearly two months, that is indicative of a sleepy market.  We are trained to believe the markets are vulnerable to downside when participants show complacency, and that has certainly been the case since the[...]

  • Technical Analysis & Charts | VIX | Futures | Aug 29, 2016, 11:26 AM

    BigTrends.com Weekly Market Outlook - August 29, 2016

    BigTrends.com Weekly Market Outlook - August 29, 2016

    Unable to resist the weight of its 9% gain since its late-June low, the S&P 500 (SPX) (SPY) finally started to buckle last week. The index only lost 0.68% for the five-day span, but that was the worst weekly performance since June, and could end up serving as the profit-taking excuse some traders have been waiting for. We'll look at the matter in more detail after a closer look at last week's and this week's economic numbers. They matter more than usual now, with the prospect of rising interest[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Aug 28, 2016, 12:24 PM

    Weekend Review - VIX Futures and Options - 8/22 - 8/26

    Weekend Review - VIX Futures and Options - 8/22 - 8/26

    VIX rose a whopping 20% last week, although that is a jump off a pretty low base.  This was in response to the S&P 500 dropping only 0.68%.  Note the curve didn’t replicate the VIX move since the futures were already discounting higher volatility.  Stated another way, the steep contango dissipated a bit as spot VIX narrowed the spread with the nearer dated futures. At least one trader appears to be expecting a further run in VIX over the next few weeks. [...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Aug 27, 2016, 7:30 PM

    Weekend Review - Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 8/22 - 8/26

    Weekend Review - Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 8/22 - 8/26

    The short end of the VXST – VIX – VXV – VXMT curve rose last week as volatility moved higher in reaction to comments coming from the annual get together in Jackson Hole.  The result is a bit less steepness in a curve that has been pretty darn steep the past few weeks. The long volatility funds got a small reprieve from the severe downtrend in performance that has been in place since the first quarter. SVXY gave up some performance last week and VXX along with[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Aug 27, 2016, 4:25 PM

    Weekend Review - Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 8/22 - 8/26

    Weekend Review - Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 8/22 - 8/26

    The Russell 2000 (RUT) widened the 2016 performance lead on the Russell 1000 (RUI) last week.  RUT rose 0.11% while RUI was down 0.67%.  For the year RUT is up 8.99% while RUI is up around 6.17%.  What is sort of missed is the relative performance since February’s lows.  RUT has gained 29.8% while RUI is up only 19.5% since the market bottomed earlier this year. Expected volatility rose last week but the gap between the CBOE Russell 2000 Volatility Index (RVX)[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Aug 27, 2016, 11:08 AM

    Happy VIX-entines Day

    Happy VIX-entines Day

    The funniest part of my last post was the quote from my last sentence, "...VIX, which I doubt will stay the same every minute from here on out..." because it has basically stayed right where it was at the time of that writing more than a month ago.  Spanning 11-13 that day set the tone for the next month, since that's all it's done ever since (with the exception of a toe dipped in 14 yesterday), for the next 25 trading days. (*And excepting today as I've been sitting here writing this,[...]

  • Market News | Aug 26, 2016, 4:33 PM

    The Weekly Options News Roundup – 8/26/2016

    The Weekly Options News Roundup – 8/26/2016

    Options Strategy ‘Put’ In Perspective Traders in the S&P 500 Index option pit at CBOE in June.  Photo: Getty Images Pension funds are increasingly beginning to use the CBOE S&P 500 PutWrite Index (PUT) as an efficient means to garner income while providing a “cushion” from volatility during market downturns. The PUT strategy is designed to sell a sequence of one-month, at-the-money, S&P 500 Index puts and invest cash at one- and three-month Treasury Bill[...]

  • Market News | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Aug 25, 2016, 7:51 PM

    Earnings Next Week - 8/29 - 9/2

    Earnings Next Week - 8/29 - 9/2

    Next week we have a small list, but it's an interesting one as several of the companies reporting have recently had a big move or just regularly experience a lot of volatility around earnings.  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.  

  • Technical Analysis & Charts | VIX | Futures | Aug 22, 2016, 1:28 PM

    BigTrends.com Weekly Market Outlook - Tug Of War Continues

    BigTrends.com Weekly Market Outlook - Tug Of War Continues

    For the second week in a row, stocks were content to simply drift sideways.... the result of opposing factors simultaneously weighing on investors' mind. From one direction stocks are being buoyed by low interest rates that could linger for a while, while from the other direction the market's high valuations may be keeping a lid on things. The bulls are technically winning the war, but it's a marginal victory and the tide could turn quite easily. We'll weigh the odds in a moment. Let's[...]

  • Market News | Aug 22, 2016, 9:36 AM

    Buying a Breakout, Selling Breakdowns

    Buying a Breakout, Selling Breakdowns

    When a stock makes a big breakout or breakdown on some very heavy turnover, it catches the market's attention. We often feel regret and that we are late to the party, and that if we decide to jump on board then the stock will reverse course. That is the psychological negative of not understanding momentum, for it is at these moments that the best opportunity for gain often lie ahead. Stocks move over time, often long periods of time - yet our minds constantly think in the moment. This is a divergence[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Aug 20, 2016, 7:42 PM

    Weekend Review - VIX Futures and Options - 8/15 - 8/19

    Weekend Review - VIX Futures and Options - 8/15 - 8/19

    VIX dropped a little as the equity market did a whole lot of nothing last week.  We retired the August contract on the open Wednesday morning and September took over as the front month.  With time to go to expiration (this is actually a five-week cycle) everyone seemed to notice the steep contango again.  What is interesting below is the behavior of the curve beyond October.  November and beyond gained a little ground despite all the contracts moving up in the pecking order of[...]

  • Market News | Trader Talk | Strategy | Trade Ideas | Aug 20, 2016, 2:00 PM

    Weekend Review - Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 8/15 - 8/19

    Weekend Review - Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 8/15 - 8/19

    For the second week in a row the S&P 500 Index related volatility indexes hardly budged. Three out of four were lower with the longest dated, VXMT, up slightly on the week. We’ve ranted and raved in various forums about how VVIX has been holding up despite a lower VIX. It was kind of like the last holdout for higher equity market related volatility until this past week when it took a 12% dive.  This puts VVIX closer to the lower end of the historical range. I guess[...]

  • Market News | Trader Talk | Strategy | Trade Ideas | Aug 20, 2016, 10:09 AM

    Weekend Review - Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 8/15 - 8/19

    Weekend Review - Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 8/15 - 8/19

    Sometimes I over personify the financial markets and when I saw that the Russell 2000 (RUT) easily extended the lead over the Russell 1000 (RUI) this week an Olympic themed situation popped into my head.  I saw the Russell 2000 as Usain Bolt giving a thumbs up as it easily moved farther ahead of the Russell 1000.  For the week RUT gained 0.60% while RUI was actually down by 0.01% which places the 2016 lead for RUT at just over 2% (8.88% vs. 6.86%). When VIX is low the ratio[...]

  • Market News | Aug 19, 2016, 1:17 PM

    The Weekly Options News Roundup – 8/19/2016

    The Weekly Options News Roundup – 8/19/2016

    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. Markets Get Social Powers CBOE has partnered with Social Market Analytics (SMA) in the development of a suite of indexes that harness predictive signals from Twitter traffic to generate different “S-Factors” that gauge investor stock sentiment.  On Monday, the CBOE-SMA Large Cap Index (SMLC Index),[...]