Stocks post slight gains with VIX flat

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The major equity indexes closed slightly higher yesterday, while the CBOE Volatility Index was exactly unchanged.

The S&P 500 was up less than 1 point to to 1685.96. It pushed above 1693 right after the open, fell below 1683 in the early afternoon, and bounced from there. Resistance is at 1699 and support at 1660.

The Nasdaq 100 gained 16.38 points to finish at 3085.33. It posted both a closing and intraday 13-year high. The intraday high of 3099.38 came in the morning. Support is at 3000. (When equity indexes are at highs, further resistance levels are obviously projections not based on previous trading patterns, so I will refrain from listing them.)

The Russell 2000 rose 2.85 points to 1043.51. Resistance is at 1057 and support at 1000.

The VIX was flat at 13.39. The volatility index was positive for most of the day and climbed to 14.14 by mid-afternoon, but then declined steadily after that. It remains far above actual volatility of the S&P 500, which has a 10-day historical reading of 4.6 percent and the 20-day rate of 7 percent.

The VIX futures were all lower. The August contracts were down 0.35 points to close at 14.30, while the September futures lost 0.25 points to finish at 15.70. This had the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures Note (:VXX) down 1.97 percent to close at $15.40, a new closing low. 

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