Market News

August 21, 2012  Tue 10:28 AM CT

Options volume is strong this morning, with more than 6 million contracts trading. Oddly, hedging doesn't appear to be the main action in the index and ETF options.

The SPDR S&P 500 Fund (SPY) has 653,000 contracts -- slightly behind Apple -- with its put-to-call ratio clearly short of 2-1. The S&P 500 Index (SPX) has 209,000 options trade with puts outpacing calls by a narrow margin. Not far behind are the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) options with 195,000 contracts, 118,000 of which are calls.

In quick succession behind are the PowerShares QQQ Trust (QQQ) and iShares Russell 2000 Fund (IWM) options with 187,000 and 169,000 respectively. The former has slightly more puts than calls, but the latter is evenly split.

The SPDR Gold Shares Fund (GLD) sees 107,000 options trade, with calls outpacing puts by 2 to 1. Just behind are the iShare Silver Trust Fund (SLV) options with 102,000, 60,000 of which are calls.

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