• VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 25, 2017, 1:38 PM

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/20/2017 - 11/24/2017

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/20/2017 - 11/24/2017

    The VXST – VIX – VIX3M – VXMT curve shifted lower with even VXST, which was under extra holiday week pressure going into the 11/17 close, losing value last week.  Looking at VIX3M and VXMT one might think traders expect 2018 to be a continuation of what we’ve had in 2017, at least to start the year. The long funds resumed their downward move while the short funds bounced as they do following any short lived strength in volatility (I have a hard time calling a move to[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 25, 2017, 10:42 AM

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 11/20/2017 - 11/24/2017

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 11/20/2017 - 11/24/2017

    Small cap stocks finished the week up about 1.8% when measured by the Russell 2000 (RUT) while large caps had a good week as well with the Russell 1000 (RUI) moving up by about 1%.  For the year RUI is still ahead of RUT, but small caps are trying to close the gap. We got quite a move higher in the relationship between the Cboe Russell 2000 Volatility Index (RVX) and VIX.  Sometimes this is attributed to a rise in RVX, but more often it is due to a drop in VIX and that was the case last[...]

  • Trader Talk | Education | Nov 20, 2017, 10:42 AM

    Pricing Ratio Spreads - Comparing Expirations and Strikes with SPX and CMG

    Pricing Ratio Spreads - Comparing Expirations and Strikes with SPX and CMG

    Wednesday I conducted a webinar for Interactive Brokers discussing ratio spreads.  During the presentation I was asked about initiating 1 x 2 and what expirations and strike combinations would result in a credit.  Another stipulation was that the trade would buy one at-the-money option and sell two out-of-the-money options.  I wasn’t asked for a call or put spread, so I did both with each expiration.  With so many moving parts to that question I responded that I would investigate[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 18, 2017, 3:17 PM

    Weekend Review of VIX Futures and Options - 11/13/2017 - 11/17/2017

    Weekend Review of VIX Futures and Options - 11/13/2017 - 11/17/2017

    VIX showed signs of life last week with a move to the lower teens.  November settlement Wednesday morning came in at the highest level (13.79) since April.  However, when the week came to an end VIX finished only 0.14 higher.  The VIX futures rose slightly as well, with the farther dated futures uncharacteristically gaining more than the nearer dated contracts.  Monday with VIX around 11.50 and the November 29th VIX future at 11.90 a trader put on a position that looks like[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 18, 2017, 3:11 PM

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/13/2017 - 11/17/2017

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/13/2017 - 11/17/2017

    What the heck is going on with VXST on the chart below?  Basically Thanksgiving.  As a nine-day measure of SPX implied volatility this index takes into account options that have their implied volatility under pressure to adjust for extra time decay since we have Thursday off and a half day this coming Friday.  I have a funny feeling this time next week VXST will have fallen back in line (or contango) with the other indexes below.  The long funds were a bit lower last[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 18, 2017, 3:03 PM

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 11/13/2017 - 11/17/2017

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 11/13/2017 - 11/17/2017

    Small caps ruled the day last week as the Russell 2000 (RUT) rose 1.24% while the Russell 1000 (RUI) was down 0.11%.  For the year RUI is up over 15% while RUT still lags at up 10%.  The relationship between the Cboe Russell 2000 Volatility Index (RVX) and VIX remained at low levels as small caps were in favor.  I know hindsight is easy, but we can learn from it and the dramatic drop in the RVX / VIX ratio a couple of weeks ago may have been a precursor to the solid relative[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 12, 2017, 4:19 PM

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/6/2017 - 11/10/2017

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 11/6/2017 - 11/10/2017

    S&P 500 volatility rose across the four volatility indexes based on SPX option pricing this past week.  The short side of the equation was up strong and the longer dated indexes (VIX3M and VXMT) had good weeks as well.  It may just be some concern is finally returning to the equity markets.   The long funds had solid weeks with the unleveraged ETPs gaining 3% to 7%, with the big winner being EVIX which is based on VSTOXX futures trading.  The short funds gave up almost the[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 12, 2017, 3:42 PM

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 11/6/2017 - 11/10/2017

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 11/6/2017 - 11/10/2017

    Small caps fell farther behind last week as the Russell 2000 (RUT) was down 1.37% while the Russell 1000 (RUI) was down only 0.24%.  For the year RUT is now up 8.71% while RUI has gained a very respectable 15.21%.  This time last week the CBOE Russell 2000 Volatility Index (RVX) premium relative to VIX was at 2017 highs.  Despite the fall off in RUT compared to RUI, the ratio experienced a pretty dramatic drop.  We are going to attribute that to the rise in VIX more than an[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 12, 2017, 12:20 PM

    Weekend Review of VIX Futures and Options - 11/6/2017 - 11/10/2017

    Weekend Review of VIX Futures and Options - 11/6/2017 - 11/10/2017

    VIX rose over 20% last week and the futures curve followed, but not nearly to the extent as the spot index.  The November contract goes off the board on the open Wednesday finishing the week at only a 0.31 premium to the spot index.  Usually the December contract is conspicuously low relative to spot VIX at this time of year as no one is concerned about the holidays and there are a few extra non-trading days associated with VIX around December expiration.  However, the over 2 point[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Nov 5, 2017, 1:18 PM

    Agenda Set for 3rd Annual Cboe RMC Asia - Dec 5 - 6

    Agenda Set for 3rd Annual Cboe RMC Asia - Dec 5 - 6

    Every job has the things you ‘have to do’ and those that you ‘get to do’.  I know I have worn this line out, but I cannot think of a better way to describe what the Cboe Risk Management Conferences mean to me.  The schedule for this year’s Asian version of RMC was posted on Friday and as always the lineup is very strong with respect to both the quality of speakers as well as the topics that will be covered in Hong Kong on December 5th and 6th.  Day[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 4, 2017, 11:23 AM

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 10/30/2017 - 11/3/2017

    Weekend Review of Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 10/30/2017 - 11/3/2017

    VIX closed on an all-time low Friday and VXST was lower on the week as well, but note the right side of the VXST – VIX – VIX3M – VXMT curve where we had a slight rise in both the longer dated S&P 500 related volatility indexes.  The long ETPs were looking good on Monday, but they managed to give it back and more by the end of the week.  Even SKEW and VVIX, which have been holding up relative to VIX most of 2017 are starting to work lower.  Across the spectrum[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 4, 2017, 11:16 AM

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 10/30/2017 - 11/3/2017

    Weekend Review of Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 10/30/2017 - 11/3/2017

    The Russell 2000 (RUT) had a tough week, losing almost 1% while the large cap focused Russell 1000 (RUI) managed to rise by 0.26%.  The outperformance of large versus small caps was threatened toward the end of the third quarter, but RUI is up 2.65% versus only a 0.27% rise for RUT in the fourth quarter. Due to very low VIX and a rise in the CBOE Russell 2000 Volatility Index (RVX) last week, the RVX / VIX relationship finished the week with RVX at over a 60% premium to VIX.  This happened[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Nov 4, 2017, 11:10 AM

    Weekend Review of VIX Futures and Options - 10/30/2017 - 11/3/2017

    Weekend Review of VIX Futures and Options - 10/30/2017 - 11/3/2017

    VIX finished the week on an all-time closing low level.  However, despite the dramatic drop last week, only the November VIX future was lower while the rest of the contracts were higher for the week.  It may be that traders are expecting the low volatility environment to be coming to an end.    On Wednesday, a trader took a stance that VIX is going to remain at low levels, but higher than the recently very low readings.  With VIX around 9.90 and the November future trading[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Nov 4, 2017, 7:14 AM

    VIX Index Hits 9.14, its All-Time Daily Closing Low Value

    VIX Index Hits 9.14, its All-Time Daily Closing Low Value

    On November 3 the Cboe Volatility Index® (VIX®) closed at 9.14, an all-time record low for both a daily and weekly closing value for the index. While the news media often focuses on the spot VIX Index, volatility traders analyze the price movements of VIX futures. The prices for VIX futures at the close on November 3 ranged from 10.1 to 16.4. Investors can learn more about use of VIX futures and options at www.cboe.com/VIX and at upcoming Cboe Risk Management Conferences – [...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Strategy | Trade Ideas | Cboe Benchmark Indexes | Nov 2, 2017, 4:14 PM

    Historic Volatility Recently Dropped Below 1.7 for Eight Cboe Benchmark Indexes

    Historic Volatility Recently Dropped Below 1.7 for Eight Cboe Benchmark Indexes

    In times of geopolitical uncertainties, many investors are searching for investments with low volatility and higher yields. Several news stories have noted that stock indexes recently had low volatility. On October 18 the 20-trading-day historic volatility for the S&P 500 (SPX) Index dropped to 3.4, its lowest level since 1969 (source: Bloomberg). There now is concern that with higher price-earnings ratios, the volatility of stock indexes could spike in coming months. EVEN LOWER HISTORIC VOLATILITY[...]

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