Rhoads-Russell

Russell Rhoads, CFA

Russell Rhoads, CFA, is Director of Education for the CBOE Options Institute. His career before CBOE included positions at a variety of firms including Highland Capital Management, Caldwell & Orkin Investment Counsel, Balyasny Asset Management, and Millennium Management. He is a financial author and editor having contributed to multiple magazines and edited several books for Wiley publishing. He is the author of six market related books including Trading VIX Derivatives, Option Spread Trading, Trading Weekly Options, and Options Strategies for Advisors and Institutions. He authored material to be included in Level II of the CFA program and material for the CMT designation. In addition to his duties for the CBOE, he is an adjunct instructor at Loyola University and the University of Illinois - Chicago. He is a double graduate of the University of Memphis with a BBA ('92) and an MS ('94) in Finance and also received a Master's Certificate in Financial Engineering from the Illinois Tech in 2003. Russell is currently pursuing a PhD from Oklahoma State University with an expected graduation date of December 2017.

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 29, 2015, 3:44 AM

    Weekly Review - VIX Futures and Options - 11/23 - 11/27

    Weekly Review - VIX Futures and Options - 11/23 - 11/27

    The S&P 500 was hardly changed on the week last week and the same may be said for VIX and the monthly term structure.  The lines don’t overlap, but if I am not wearing my reading glasses the chart below almost looks like the same line. The only thing of interest to report about the short term futures chart is the dip that shows up on the orange line below.  That’s the contract that expires just before Christmas which may be discounting several holidays which[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 28, 2015, 11:59 PM

    Weekly Review - Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/23 - 11/27

    Weekly Review - Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/23 - 11/27

    Very quiet holiday week.  There really isn’t much else to say, but it is interesting that VIX remains over 15.00.  I’m also attributing the rise in VXST to getting a holiday shortened week behind us.  Man I’m glad it’s not my job to fill up a business network with programming which must have been a heck of a challenge last week, especially on Friday. The funds were quiet as well, but you have to snicker when a 2.7% change (see VXX below) is considered[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Strategy | Trade Ideas | Nov 22, 2015, 2:13 PM

    The Week in Russell 2000 Trading - 11/16 - 11/20

    The Week in Russell 2000 Trading - 11/16 - 11/20

    Large caps ruled the week with the Russell 1000 (RUI) gaining over 3%.  Small cap stocks were no slouches, but the Russell 2000 did lag the Russell 1000 gaining 2.5%.  For the year RUI is up 1.21% and RUT is down 2.45%.  However, at the end of this blog I’ll note some statistics that show RUT still has a shot at victory in 2015. Both the CBOE Russell 2000 Volatility Index (RVX) and VIX were lower last week based on the rally in the equity markets.  RVX dropped[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Education | Futures | Trade Ideas | Nov 21, 2015, 1:37 PM

    The Week in VIX - 11/16 - 11/20

    The Week in VIX - 11/16 - 11/20

    The VIX term structure returned to normal from slight backwardation last week as the S&P 500 rose over 3%.  Two years ago a 3% move in the S&P 500 probably would have resulted in VIX under 12.00, but these are different times and with a rate hike looming down to the mid 15’s is the best we can expect. The short dated term structure ended the week in slight contango which has been the norm when VIX drops since the futures were launched back in July.  The curve[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Strategy | Nov 21, 2015, 11:37 AM

    The Week in Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/16 - 11/20

    The Week in Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/16 - 11/20

    The shift for the VXST – VIX – VXV – VXMT curve was dramatic, but sort of what we have become use to in this buy on the dip culture.  VIX finished the week under 16.00, which voids a prediction that I had for the rest of the year.  I felt concerns about a December rate hike and the impact on stocks into 2016 would keep VIX elevated for the final few weeks of the year. VXX and the other long funds came under pressure based on the drop in VIX and VIX futures[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Strategy | Trade Ideas | Nov 17, 2015, 3:15 PM

    Block Trade Analysis - VIX Weeklys Option Trades

    Block Trade Analysis - VIX Weeklys Option Trades

    Tomorrow is November VIX settlement, but that hasn’t stopped some short term VIX traders from putting on new positions, in fact it may have encouraged them to do some trading. I ventured down to the trader floor late today to see what may be going on in the VIX Weeklys options set to settle on the open next Tuesday.  For those that know VIX well, you know that VIX futures and options normally settle on a Wednesday, 30 days before an expiration Friday.  However, December 25th is a[...]

  • Market News | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 15, 2015, 5:50 PM

    The Week in Russell 2000 Trading - 11/9 - 11/13

    The Week in Russell 2000 Trading - 11/9 - 11/13

    The tough week for stocks was harder on small caps than large caps as the Russell 2000 (RUT) was down 4.43% and the Russell 1000 (RUI) dropped 3.63%.  RUT has a lot of work to do to catch up with RUI as the gap is at almost 3% between RUI (down 1.92%) and RUT (down 4.83% for the year). We tend to see VIX rise relative to the CBOE Russell 2000 Index (RVX) in times of turmoil.  That happened in August to the point of historically extreme relative RVX – VIX levels. [...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | Trade Ideas | Nov 15, 2015, 10:40 AM

    The Week in VIX - 11/9 - 11/13

    The Week in VIX - 11/9 - 11/13

    VIX managed a finish over 20 as Friday’s market action raised the level of concern among market participants.  You have to wonder if Friday August 21st and the follow through on the 24th is still fresh in trader’s minds. The short term curve flattened out which seems to be the norm when VIX move higher, since VIX Weeklys are relatively new. Mid-day on Friday while VIX was still under 20.00 (19.60 to be exact), there was a buyer of the VIX Dec 25 Calls who paid 1.10 and[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | Nov 15, 2015, 9:09 AM

    The Week in Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/9 - 11/13

    The Week in Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/9 - 11/13

    The S&P 500 took a dive last week in what turned out to be the second worst weekly performance of 2015.  As of Friday the S&P 500 is down 1.7% for the year which would be the first noticeable loss (2011 was down less than 0.01%) since 2008.  The four volatility indexes that use S&P 500 as the underlying all shot higher.  What stands out to me is the high levels for VXV (3-month) and VXMT (6-month) on the chart below.  We are in the midst of high SPX implied volatility[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | Trade Ideas | Nov 12, 2015, 7:30 AM

    Earnings Next Week - 11/16 - 11/20

    Earnings Next Week - 11/16 - 11/20

    Regular earnings season seems to have come to a close and now the numbers are mostly about retail.  The numbers below represent the last three years of stock price reaction except when the data is in italics (JD for example).

  • Market News | Trader Talk | Education | Futures | Trade Ideas | Nov 11, 2015, 8:01 AM

    Five Things I'm Looking Forward to at RMC Asia

    Five Things I'm Looking Forward to at RMC Asia

    The air was cold this morning as I headed to the train which means two things.  Thanksgiving is just around the corner and right after that CBOE will be in Hong Kong for our first annual CBOE Risk Management Conference in Asia.  The schedule is out and I’m excited about the whole docket, but five things in particular have me counting the days to November 30th. Ed Tilly, CEO of CBOE Holdings, will be speaking at the beginning of the second day to welcome attendees and give an update[...]

  • Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 9, 2015, 8:02 AM

    Earnings Week of 11/9 - 11/13

    Earnings Week of 11/9 - 11/13

    Earnings season is coming to a close, but there are still a few interesting names reporting this week.  The numbers below represent stock price reaction over the last 3 years, unless in italics (W this week).  Max is the biggest up move, Min is the biggest stock drop, Abs Avg is the average move (higher or lower for you straddle traders) off earnings, and Last Q is what happened three months ago.  

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Education | Strategy | Nov 8, 2015, 8:13 AM

    The Week in Russell 2000 Trading - 11/2 - 11/6

    The Week in Russell 2000 Trading - 11/2 - 11/6

    The first thing that popped in my mind when I created the first chart in this blog was the story “The Little Engine that Could”.  This was a pre-Thomas the Tank Engine story of a little locomotive that achieves a great feat while telling himself “I think I can” repeatedly.  My mental analogy relates to the Russell 2000 (RUT) line below which pushed higher by over 3% last week closing the 2015 YTD gap with the Russell 1000 and also moved very close to positive territory[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Education | Futures | Nov 7, 2015, 1:58 PM

    The Week in VIX - 11/2 - 11/6

    The Week in VIX - 11/2 - 11/6

    VIX finished the week closer to 14 than 15 based on a muted response to the employment number and a lack of known potential volatility events on the horizon.  The fear index did manage to spend a little time on Monday and Tuesday under 14.00 which is a level that many consider the new ‘floor’ for VIX since we are about to enter a period of increasing interest rates.    The futures all followed the index lower which would be expected with smooth sailing for the stock[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | Nov 7, 2015, 11:22 AM

    The Week in Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/2 - 11/6

    The Week in Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/2 - 11/6

    The S&P 500 quietly rose just under 1% last week and VIX worked lower.  Across the board S&P 500 focused volatility indexes dropped with the possibility that any threat of increased volatility in the markets has been pushed out to 2016.  Of course back in August those same indexes dropped as the economic calendar was light and Labor Day was around the corner.  Note what happened on August 21st and August 24th when complacency started setting in. On the table below[...]