VIX climbs along with stock indexes
Chris McKhann | firstname.lastname@example.org
The S&P 500 was up less than 1 point to 1520.33. The SPX dipped to its session low just under 1516 with about an hour left to trade but climbed sharply into the close. The index hit another new five-year intraday high of 1524.69 in the morning and has support at 1495.
The Nasdaq 100 was up 11.15 points, or 0.4 percent, to 2773.77. The NDX peaked at 2783 in the morning, its highest level since mid-October. Support remains at 2715.
The Russell 2000 was up 3.06 points, or 0.33 percent, to 920.58. That was just off its intraday high from the morning but still marks another new all-time closing record. Support remains at 894.
The VIX rose 0.34 points, or 2.69 percent, to 12.98. It spent most of the afternoon above 13. Although the volatility index is relatively low, it is still below the S&P 500's 20-day historical volatility of 8 percent.
The February VIX futures settled in the morning at 13.07. The now front-month March contracts finished the day at 14.75, while the April futures finished trading at 15.75. This pushed the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures Note (VXX) up fractionally to 22.49.
More than 747,000 VIX options traded on the day, led by 594,000 calls. The VVIX Index, which measures the implied volatility of the VIX options, was actually lower by 0.8 percent to finish the day at 73.25.