Rhoads-Russell

Russell Rhoads, CFA

Russell Rhoads, CFA, is Director, Product Advancement, Global Derivatives at Cboe Global Markets. His career before joining 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 at Cboe, he is an adjunct instructor at Loyola University. 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 in the Summer of 2018.

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | Jun 4, 2015, 1:30 PM

    Call Stupid Buyer in VIX Options Today

    Call Stupid Buyer in VIX Options Today

    I came across a trade from Wednesday and headed down to the VIX pit to ask some questions before putting up a block trade blog. The response I got was, “Do you want to hear about something more interesting than that?” Usually when a question is answered with a question it is an indication that you should go elsewhere for answers. This is not one of those cases. In trader terms a “stupid” option trade is when a trades comes in a purchases two different options in a spread trade.[...]

  • So Far VIX in 2015 Tells a Different Story Than 2014

    So Far VIX in 2015 Tells a Different Story Than 2014

    Over the weekend I was asked to take a look at the first five months of 2015 with respect to the volatility markets. Since volatility indexes need to be looked at in relation to recent history I decided to compare VIX in the first five months of 2015 to VIX last year. Before getting to that comparison, keep in mind the stock market action in early 2014 was very similar to that during the first five months of this year.   In 2014 the S&P 500 was up 4.07% while this year the S&P 500[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | May 31, 2015, 10:10 AM

    The Week in Russell 2000 Trading - 5/26 - 5/29

    The Week in Russell 2000 Trading - 5/26 - 5/29

    Stocks were lower last week, but the small cap sector seemed to hold up a little better than large caps. The Russell 2000 (RUT) was down 0.45% while the Russell 1000 (RUI) was under a bit more pressure dropping 0.88%. RUT had lost the 2015 performance lead to the large cap focused RUI a few weeks ago, but took the lead back in late May. This performance margin widened last week and RUT is now up 3.47% for the year with the RUI up 2.82%. It is a lead, but definitely a slim margin which can change[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | May 30, 2015, 4:14 PM

    The Week in VIX - 5/26 - 5/29

    The Week in VIX - 5/26 - 5/29

    The S&P 500 drop, which can be mostly attributed to market action on Friday, resulted in VIX putting up a pretty bullish week. Everyone is aware that we had a short week last week and VIX traders know this can cause a little disorientation when looking at VIX relative to the futures pricing. The curve below shows that VIX was up over 14% last week while the respective futures were pretty quiet. VIX futures traders are aware that VIX is a bit depressed before long weekends and tends to rebound[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Strategy | Trade Ideas | May 30, 2015, 11:51 AM

    The Week in Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 5/26 - 5/29

    The Week in Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 5/26 - 5/29

    Short term volatility rose last week based on stock market action and some impact from the holiday weekend. VXST’s 42% rise is partially attributed to the three day weekend being behind us and we can probably give a little credit to the day off Monday for the 14% rise in VIX. The issue that has nothing to do with the four day work week is the shape of the curve below which shows VXST is basically in line with VIX as of Friday's close. This is an indication that[...]

  • Market News | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | May 28, 2015, 2:04 PM

    Earnings Next Week - 6/1 - 6/5

    Earnings Next Week - 6/1 - 6/5

    We are probably hitting a lull in the earnings calendar next week with only seven stocks reporting. As always Max is the biggest gain in response to earnings, Min is the biggest drop, Abs Average is the average magnitude of the moves, and Last Q is what the stock did last quarter in response to earnings.  Finally, all numbers represent three years unless italicized which is this case is AMBA which has only 2 1/2 years of history to work with.

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Strategy | May 25, 2015, 3:43 PM

    The Week in Russell 2000 Option Trading - 5/18 - 5/22

    The Week in Russell 2000 Option Trading - 5/18 - 5/22

    Small cap stocks took the lead from large cap stocks for 2015 last week as the Russell 2000 (RUT) was up 0.66% while the Russell 1000 (RUI) rose only 0.20%. That places RUT slightly in the lead up 3.94% for 2015 versus RUI up 3.73% for the year. I came across an article from Friday that was discussing how low volatility is for the Russell 2000. I always like to think of volatility in relative terms and for the CBOE Russell 2000 Volatility Index (RVX) this means comparing it to VIX. Using[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | May 25, 2015, 9:32 AM

    The Week in VIX - 5/18 - 5/22

    The Week in VIX - 5/18 - 5/22

    The VIX futures curve was lower last week with June losing more than the index or other futures as it was awarded the official title of “Front Month” with May VIX futures and options settling on the open Wednesday. Below I’ve changed things up a bit and the comparison is a year over year look at VIX and the VIX futures from Friday and a year ago on the Friday before Memorial Day. I was visiting the VIX pit with the attendees of the May version of The Option Institute’s Investing[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Education | Futures | May 24, 2015, 12:32 PM

    The Week in Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 5/18 - 5/22

    The Week in Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 5/18 - 5/22

    The S&P 500 moved up a little last week and the volatility curve moved lower. On the shorter dated end of the volatility term structure chart, there was the three day weekend effect which helped push VXST and VIX a tad bit lower than would be expected in front of a normal two day weekend. Just for the heck of it, I took a look at the curve 52 weeks ago and added it to the diagram below. I expected the 2015 pre-Memorial Day weekend curve to be higher than the 2014 version, but was surprised at[...]

  • Trader Talk | Strategy | Trade Ideas | May 23, 2015, 8:28 AM

    Block Trade Analysis - $RUT 850 / 1160 Bull Put Spread

    Block Trade Analysis - $RUT 850 / 1160 Bull Put Spread

    Author's note - this is an updated blog from last week correcting the strike of the short put.   Thanks to Robert Shen for the catch. Volume continues to rise in the Russell 2000 (RUT) option arena and my choices among block trades to discuss are on the rise as well. A trade from this past Tuesday caught my eye for three reasons. First, it was not a short dated deep out of the money credit spread – most of the trades I’ve come across and discusses recently in[...]

  • Market News | Trader Talk | May 21, 2015, 8:42 AM

    Earnings Next Week - 5/26 - 5/29

    Earnings Next Week - 5/26 - 5/29

    Next week is a short week, but there are ten companies reporting their earnings. As always Max is the biggest gain in response to earnings, Min is the biggest drop, Abs Average is the average magnitude of the moves, and Last Q is what the stock did last quarter in response to earnings.  Finally, all numbers represent three years unless italicized which is this case is PANW and WDAY which both have 2 1/2 years of history to work with.

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | May 17, 2015, 9:39 AM

    The Week in Russell 2000 Trading - 5/11 - 5/14

    The Week in Russell 2000 Trading - 5/11 - 5/14

    Small cap stocks narrowed the performance gap with large cap stocks last week. The Russell 2000 (RUT – 1243.95) rose 0.73% which places 2015’s price performance at up 3.26% while the Russell 1000 (RUI – 1184.73) gained 0.37%. Large cap stock performance is still slightly better than year to date small cap performance as the Russell 1000 is up 3.53% for 2015. The chart below adjusts both indexes to start the year at 100 for an easy visual comparison. The CBOE Russell[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | May 16, 2015, 4:19 PM

    The Week in VIX - 5/11 - 5/15

    The Week in VIX - 5/11 - 5/15

    There was a fairly parallel shift lower in spot VIX and VIX futures pricing as there wasn’t much to get excited about last week. The May VIX future dropped a little more than the spot index as expiration is just around the corner. Despite the almost 5% drop in the May contract, the premium relative to spot VIX is about 1.30. The premium of the May futures contract relative to spot VIX got me looking into various puts that expire Wednesday morning. I copied down the[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | May 16, 2015, 2:31 PM

    The Week in Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 5/11 - 5/15

    The Week in Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 5/11 - 5/15

    There was a slight shift in the VXST – VIX – VXV – VXMT term structure last week. VXST and VIX were down, VXV was actually up slightly and VXMT dropped. Relative to history, VXV and VXMT are higher than you would expect with the S&P 500 making all-time highs. I’m convinced the market is braced for a difficult end to 2015. VXX and the other long oriented ETPs continue to grind lower as VIX stays at low levels and the futures maintain contango. SKEW stands out[...]

  • Market News | Trade Ideas | May 14, 2015, 11:34 AM

    Earnings Week of 5/18 - 5/22

    Earnings Week of 5/18 - 5/22

    It's all about retail next week.  As always Max is the biggest gain in response to earnings, Min is the biggest drop, Abs Average is the average magnitude of the moves, and Last Q is what the stock did last quarter in response to earnings.  

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