Options Trading News

March 19, 2013  Tue 1:16 AM CT

The CBOE Volatility Index and its futures rose yesterday as the major equity indexes closed lower but off their worse levels of the session.

The S&P 500 was down 8.60 points to 1552.10. The SPX fell below 1546 just after the open and then climbed back to almost 1559 but slid lower into the close. It has some support at 1540 and resistance at Friday's high of 1564.

The Nasdaq 100 was down 7.11 points to close at 2792.30. It slipped below 2768, climbed to positive and then dipped to the close. It has support at 2760 and resistance at 2810.

The Russell 2000 was down 5.28 points to finish at 947.20. The small-cap index was lower all day but is still above Wednesday's close. It has support at 926 and resistance at 954.

The VIX was up 2.06 points, or 18.23 percent, to close at 13.36. It opened at 13.50, gave up ground, then climbed to the day's high of 13.64 just before the bell. Some of this gain came from S&P 500 options pricing in the weekend's time decay.

March futures gained 1.10 points to 13.65, while April futures rose 0.70 points to close at 15.40. This had the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures Note (VXX) up 5.4 percent to 21.61.

More than 924,000 VIX options traded on the day, with calls outpacing puts by 2 to 1. The VVIX Index, which measures the implied volatility of those options, was up 8.6 percent to 93.07. The SKEW Index, which measures the relative cost of out of the puts to calls in the SPX, came into the day at 129.12, near the all-time highs. 
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