Trader Talk Archives - CBOE Blogs

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | May 21, 2017, 5:55 AM

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 5/15/2017 - 5/19/2017

    The week over week VXST – VIX – VXV – VXMT curve moved higher and appears to have done so in a very parallel fashion.  Since the week over week change doesn’t do the actual activity justice so I added the Wednesday closing curve to the graphic below.  I was honestly a little surprised at how little the S&P 500 dropped on a week over week basis and double checked the number.  I made a joking prediction Thursday morning that we would retrace the Trump Dump[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Strategy | Trade Ideas | May 20, 2017, 5:23 PM

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 5/15/2017 to 5/19/2017

    Small caps did not have a good week, despite the rebound in the equity markets after Wednesday’s swoon.  The Russell 2000 (RUT) was down over 1% last week actually dipping into negative territory for 2017 before recovering at the end of the week.  Large cap stocks as represented by the Russell 1000 (RUI) held up better than small caps with RUI down only 0.40% for the week. When volatility spikes the relative move is usually greater for VIX that the CBOE Russell 2000 Volatility Index[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | May 20, 2017, 5:14 PM

    Weekend Review of VIX Futures and Options - 5/15/2017 to 5/19/2017

    The term structure and payoff below does not do any justice to what those of us that focus on VIX and related markets this past week.  In fact, when the dust settled, all the standard futures were hardly changed on the week. Just to record what did happen last week I made a second term structure chart that includes the close on Wednesday in addition to the Friday closing curves.  As Wednesday was one of the biggest moves for VIX to the upside in several months, there were a few brave[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | May 13, 2017, 9:24 AM

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 5/8/2017 - 5/12/2017

    This time last week we were all pretty certain that the final round of the French election was a done deal.  Short term SPX implied volatility wasn’t taking any chances with VXST closing last Friday at 11.40.  With the election outcome going as expected VXST got a little crushed and the shape of the VXST – VIX – VXV – VXMT curve moved back to contango.  Both the S&P 500 and VIX dropped last week, as the number of potential stock market land mines over[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | May 13, 2017, 9:17 AM

    Weekend Review of VIX Futures and Options - 5/8/2017 - 5/12/2017

    VIX was slightly lower on the week despite the S&P 500 dropping as well.  The near dated futures worked lower with May finishing Friday at premium of just over 0.80 as that contract goes off the board this coming week.  From August and beyond the futures were actually higher which creates a pretty steep curve below. On Tuesday, we got what I am going to refer to as a MOAVCS (Mother of all VIX Call Spreads).  Near the end of the day a trader came in and purchased at least 195,000[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | May 7, 2017, 7:24 PM

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 5/1/2017 - 5/5/2017

    Large cap stocks widened the performance spread with small cap stocks with the Russell 1000 (RUI) gaining and the Russell 2000 (RUT) dropping a bit last week.  For the year, RUI is up 7.13% while RUT is up 2.94%. VIX dropped last week, but the CBOE Russell 2000 Volatility Index (RVX) was higher.  Admittedly, RVX was up only 0.02 but when combined with the VIX drop of 0.25 the result is a slight widening of the spread between RVX and VIX.  One trader put on a position late Friday[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | May 7, 2017, 7:21 PM

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 5/1/2017 - 5/5/2017

    The chart below may be one of the final references to the French Election which came to an end this weekend.  Note VXST, which reflects the IV of very short term SPX options was elevated going into the weekend.  I don’t think it is too much of a stretch to say that a quick drop in VXST may be in the cards come Monday morning.  SKEW dropping dramatically last week may be the last bastion of higher volatility dropping.  This happened despite VIX dropping which makes the[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | May 6, 2017, 9:57 AM

    Weekend Review of VIX Futures and Options - 5/1/2017 - 5/5/2017

    VIX managed to (briefly) put in a post Great Financial Crisis low hitting 9.90 on Monday and sneaking in a 9.99 low on Friday as well.  Full disclosure, I didn’t even see the 9.99 print on Friday, but then again, we are getting conditioned against getting too excited when VIX dips below 10.  Worth noting below is the bigger drop in the May future when compared to spot VIX.  Typically, we see this closer to expiration, but when there’s very little on the horizon that the[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Apr 30, 2017, 9:10 AM

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 4/24/2017 - 4/28/2017

    S&P 500 implied volatility was dramatically lower last week.  Of significance is VXV which hit 2017 lows.  I’m teamed up with an academic putting the final touches on a study showing that VXV leads VIX so this may be a signal that the low for VIX in 2017 hasn’t be established and a close below 10.00 is a distinct possibility.  Beyond the long ETPs on the table, which had a pretty tough week, are some other markets worth noting.  First, TYVIX, which was over[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Apr 29, 2017, 1:43 PM

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 4/24/2017 - 4/28/2017

    This past week was basically a tie between small and large cap stocks as the Russell 2000 (RUT) and Russell 1000 (RUI) were both up about 1.5%.  Four months into 2017 and RUI continues to maintain a lead of about 3.3% over RUT.  Last week VIX got smashed as did the CBOE Russell 2000 Volatility Index (RVX).  A return to the low end of the range resulted in the VIX / RVX relationship returning to higher levels.   With Weeklys available for trading all kinds of alternatives that[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Apr 29, 2017, 9:27 AM

    Outcome: Net Fun

    Shorting UVXY is sort of like making pancakes and flipping them in the air and catching them with the pan.  You can entertain yourself and others like that for a while, and you just may accumulate a large stack of perfectly browned piping-hot pancakes, but sooner or later some raw batter is going to hit the kitchen floor, and that is not much fun.  And what if everyone eats up all your pancakes in the meantime, and you're stuck with nothing but a kitchen-floor disaster? Well, on Thursday,[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Apr 29, 2017, 9:00 AM

    Weekend Review of VIX Futures and Options - 4/24/2017 - 4/28/2017

    Everyone knows what an ear worm is and if not you will now.  It is basically when a song is stuck in your head.  Since Monday REM’s Orange Crush has been on constant replay in my head.  VIX losing 26% and the front month down 14% definitely qualify as a volatility crush.  Since all this crushing was caused by events in Europe (France specifically) we will take a look at the week over week VSTOXX and associated futures term structure change.  Now I have Officer Barbrady[...]

  • Trader Talk | Strategy | Trade Ideas | Apr 25, 2017, 9:23 AM

    Reviewing a SPX Option Day Trade from Monday

    I have a handful of former Options Institute students who like to keep me up on their trading.  Yesterday morning I got an email from one who decided to take the other side of the big move to the upside in the S&P 500 (SPX).  Just after the market open, when the SPX was at 2374, the trader sold the SPX Apr 24th 2370 Call for 6.40 and purchased the SPX Apr 24th 2380 Call for 1.45 and a net credit of 4.95.  These options are Monday Weeklys and they expired on the close yesterday. [...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Apr 21, 2017, 9:51 AM

    Short Some Shares and Call Me in the Morning

    Who wants to buy high and sell low?  Why would anyone buy calls before the closing bell and sell them to someone for half price the next morning when the opening bell rings?  When would anyone feel okay about buying for 88 cents and then selling for 45?  Answer: When the calls are just a wrapper, a box designed to keep something else safe while in transit, like a shoe box protects the merchandise on the delivery truck so that your purchase isn't thrown on the porch one shoe at a time[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Apr 9, 2017, 10:32 AM

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 4/3/2017 - 4/7/2017

    An emerging theme in 2017 is that when stocks come under pressure the Russell 2000 (RUT) seems to take it on the chin a bit more than the Russell 1000 (RUI).  Last week the large cap focused RUI was lower by 0.33% while RUT lost just over 1.5%.  This widens the lead that RUI has on RUT to about 4.5% for 2017.  With small caps leading stocks lower the relative level of small cap volatility remains high compared to large cap volatility.  The best way to measure this is the CBOE[...]