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May 9, 2013  Thu 10:20 AM CT

Total option volume is closing in on 6 million contracts, with the typical indexes and ETFs dominating the action, according to optionMONSTER data systems.

The SPDR S&P 500 Fund (SPY) has 836,000 options traded, with 540,000 puts. The iShares Russell 2000 Fund (IWM) has seen 415,000 contracts turn over, dominated by 372,000 puts. The S&P 500 Index (SPX) options round out the top three with 275,000, evenly split between calls and puts.

The PowerShares QQQ Trust (QQQ) has 163,000 options traded, with calls outpacing puts by 2 to 1. The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) has 146,000 contracts changing hands, with 80,000 calls. The iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures Note (VXX) has 131,000 options traded, with 78,000 calls.

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Using puts to BUY stock

Puts are an options contract that gives buyers the right to sell their stock for a set price on or before a future date. However, puts can also be an effective way to BUY stock.

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