• Weekend Review - Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 6/13 - 6/17

    Weekend Review - Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 6/13 - 6/17

    The VXST – VIX – VXV – VXMT curve moved from contango to an unusual shape this past week. Lots of things point to the markets being concerned about next week’s ‘should I stay or should I go’ vote in Britain. VXST represents short term SPX option volatility and the options that expire just after the vote are feeding that calculation.  I’m going to say results in VXST finishing the week at such an elevated level last week have a little to do with Brexit. With[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | Strategy | Trade Ideas | Jun 17, 2016, 11:00 PM

    Weekend Review - VIX Futures and Options - 6/13 - 6/17

    Weekend Review - VIX Futures and Options - 6/13 - 6/17

    I’ve been around long enough to remember when the time in the markets between Memorial Day and Labor Day were quiet enough for traders to spend several afternoons at Wrigley field without feeling they were missing anything. This past week no one could have gotten away with playing hooky. As the stock market came under pressure, VIX climbed to the highest levels we have seen since February. Everyone is focused on Brexit as the ‘reason’ for the markets to be doing what they are doing.[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Jun 17, 2016, 2:01 PM

    The Weekly Options News Roundup – 6/17/2016

    The Weekly Options News Roundup – 6/17/2016

    Social Powers That Be On Tuesday, CBOE announced it plans to develop a series of social media-based strategy benchmark indexes using Social Market Analytics’ (SMA) state-of-the-art analytics. SMA chief executive officer Joseph A Gits IV, commented:  “CBOE is an unrivaled product innovator and a leader in the index space and SMA is a leader in providing actionable social media metrics.  We look forward to working with CBOE to create these first-of-their-kind indexes.”  For[...]

  • Technical Analysis & Charts | VIX | Futures | Strategy | Jun 13, 2016, 11:08 AM

    Market Outlook - Market Looks Vulnerable Here

    Market Outlook - Market Looks Vulnerable Here

    The market was on pace to a decent gain last week.... until Friday. With that day's stumble, an intraweek gain of 1.0% turned into a 0.14% loss for the five-day span. Worse, the shape and location of last week's intraweek reversal hints that the tide may have finally turned bearish. Of course, in this market, such hints don't necessarily mean a lot. We'll dissect it all below as usual, after painting with some broad brush strokes of economic data. Economic Data As was noted a week ago, there[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Jun 12, 2016, 12:00 PM

    Weekend Review - Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 6/6 - 6/10

    Weekend Review - Russell 2000 Options and Volatility - 6/6 - 6/10

    Only 5 basis points separate the 2016 performance for the Russell 2000 (RUT) and Russell 1000 (RUI). As of Friday RUI was in the lead, but do note early last week RUT finally surpassed RUI performance for 2016. The CBOE Russell 2000 Volatility Index (RVX) rose last week, as did just about every volatility index CBOE calculates. However, the rise in RVX lagged the rise in VIX on a percentage basis which resulted in a drop in the RVX / VIX premium to the lowest levels since March of this[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Futures | Trade Ideas | Jun 12, 2016, 10:29 AM

    Weekend Review - VIX Futures and Options - 6/6 - 6/10

    Weekend Review - VIX Futures and Options - 6/6 - 6/10

    June VIX settlement is on the horizon, just two trading days and an overnight to Wednesday’s AM settlement. I mention that as a lead off in this space as I find the June futures at a premium to spot VIX kind of interesting considering VIX rose 26% last week. Admittedly, a 0.50 premium isn’t all that much, but any premium at all makes me think traders are still on edge after the S&P 500 price action last week and now going into two weeks with big known unknowns (FOMC this week[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Strategy | Trade Ideas | Jun 11, 2016, 12:23 PM

    Weekend Review - Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 6/6 - 6/10

    Weekend Review - Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 6/6 - 6/10

    Last week VIX rose every day which isn’t all that unusual.   What was ground breaking was that VIX rose each of the first three days last week despite the S&P 500 moving up as well. I decided to take a look at what has happened in the past when both the S&P 500 and VIX rise together for three consecutive days. The result, it's not as uncommon as I thought, we've had 17 occurrences of three up together.  However, the last time was in January 2013. VVIX[...]

  • VIX | Education | Futures | Jun 10, 2016, 4:43 PM

    Russell 2000 Index: Re-Pricing Risk

    Russell 2000 Index: Re-Pricing Risk

    Russell 2000 Index (RUT) Hits a 2016 High The bellwether benchmark for U.S. small-caps, the Russell 2000 Index tracks the performance of U.S. companies that derive most of their revenues domestically. Since the middle of May, as the Russell 2000 Index moved to its year’s high (1190.17) on June 8th.  In comparison to the S&P 500 the Russell 2000 slightly outperformed on a year-to-date basis (+2.33% vs. 2.27%) as of today. Please note the Russell 2000 Index ticker is (RTY) in the Bloomberg[...]

  • Technical Analysis & Charts | VIX | Futures | Jun 10, 2016, 2:00 PM

    The Weekly Options News Roundup – 6/10/2016

    The Weekly Options News Roundup – 6/10/2016

    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. CBOE Plans Its London Debut On Tuesday, CBOE announced that it will open its first international office in London next month, located in the Leadenhall building, aka “The Cheesegrater” building. This new initiative is one of many that allows CBOE to increase its global presence in the region and directly[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Strategy | Trade Ideas | Jun 9, 2016, 4:34 PM

    Block Trade Analysis - VIX July Ratio Call Spread

    Block Trade Analysis - VIX July Ratio Call Spread

    June VIX futures and options settle next Wednesday on the open so we are starting to see traders look ahead to July standard expiration. Of course those that want to be more strategic can explore the VIX Weeklys, but that is an argument for another blog. This morning, exactly an hour into the trading day there was a buyer of 8,500 VIX Jul 17 Calls at 1.99 who then sold 17,000 VIX Jul 21 Calls for 1.03 each and a net credit of 0.07 per spread. The result is a small credit and a payoff at July expiration[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Jun 8, 2016, 3:11 PM

    All-Time Record High Open Interest for VIX Futures – 501,835 on June 7

    All-Time Record High Open Interest for VIX Futures – 501,835 on June 7

    Futures on the CBOE Volatility Index® (VIX®), which launched in 2004, experienced some milestones regarding open interest in recent days – *   VIX futures open interest surpassed 500,000 for the first time on June 6; *   VIX Futures open interest hit a new all-time record high of 501,835 on June 7; *   VIX Futures open interest is up 98.7% year-to-date (through June 7). VIX FUTURES VOLUME DURING EUROPEAN HOURS VIX futures are available for trading more[...]

  • VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Jun 7, 2016, 2:41 PM

    Plans are Meant for Re-Planning

    Plans are Meant for Re-Planning

    At my last writing on Tuesday, May 17th, I had just sold to open SVXY 55.50 puts for the May 20th expiration at 1.45 per contract.  My pledge was to stick to my plan and that's what I did:  I let those expire and realized full profit over the weekend when the contract expired worthless to the buyer.  It was rough going, though, with the high, low, and close of SVXY over the intervening days as shown below:   SVXY's closing price on Friday, May 20th was over $55.50,[...]

  • VIX | Education | Futures | Strategy | Jun 7, 2016, 10:35 AM

    BPVIX Index Hits Highest Level Since 2009, as Investors Manage Brexit Risk

    BPVIX Index Hits Highest Level Since 2009, as Investors Manage Brexit Risk

    On Monday the CBOE/CME FX British Pound Volatility Index (BPVIX) closed at 22.59, its highest daily close since March 2009, and the BPVIX Index has risen 161.8% so far this year (through June 6). A number of news articles have noted that the implied volatility for British Pound has risen during the past month because of concern about the upcoming June 23 Brexit referendum. Recent headlines for news stories included (1) “Pound Falls, Volatility Jumps as Polls Show Momentum for Brexit”[...]

  • Technical Analysis & Charts | VIX | Futures | Strategy | Jun 6, 2016, 12:01 PM

    BigTrends.com Weekly Market Outlook - Mini-Trading Range Developing

    BigTrends.com Weekly Market Outlook - Mini-Trading Range Developing

    All things considered, the market held up quite well last week in spite of plenty of reason not to. The S&P 500 (SPX) (SPY) ended the shortened trading week with a very slight gain, and also ended the week with the bulls testing the waters of higher highs after defining a near-term floor. And yet, its failure to actually make forward progress, even though it tried to do so, is concerning in itself. We'll take a closer look at the trading range that developed last week and what it will take[...]

  • Market News | VIX | Trader Talk | Trade Ideas | Jun 5, 2016, 1:55 PM

    Weekend Review - Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 5/31 - 6/3

    Weekend Review - Volatility Indexes and ETPs - 5/31 - 6/3

    The whole curve shifted a bit higher last week. We have to attribute the rise to the three-day weekend effect. At least in the case of VXST and VIX. Typically, VXV and VXMT are not impacted as much as the shorter dated volatility indexes. I might attribute the rise of longer dated volatility to the expected date for the next rate hike being pushed down the road. Despite the rise in VIX last week, the long volatility oriented ETPs were lower on the week. This is a function of the futures[...]

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