Stocks, VIX close with modest gains

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Equity indexes continued to reach new highs yesterday, and the CBOE Volatility Index rose as well.

The S&P 500 gained just under 3 points to close at 1669.16. It climbed to a new intraday high of 1674.93 in the early afternoon. Support is at 1622.

The Nasdaq 100 was up just over 5 points to 3026.45. It hit 3036.71 earlier, its highest intraday level, but finished the day below Friday's close. Support is at 2944.

The Russell 2000 gained less than 1 point, but that was enough for a new record close at 998.78. It did again break above 1000 during the day but was unable to outpace Monday's intraday high. Support is at 964.

The VIX was again higher with the SPX, bucking their typically inverse relationship, rising 2.69 percent to 13.37. There is usually a strong correlation between the two--about 80 percent of the time--but that has been breaking down of late. This is especially surprising as the historical volatility of the SPX is 8.5 percent and we are coming up on a three day weekend, which should depress the VIX calculation.

The VIX futures were higher as well. Yesterday was the last trading session for the May futures, which settle at the open today. They were up 0.20 points to 13.50, while the June futures gained 0.30 points to close at 15.40. That had the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures Note (:VXX) up 0.9 percent to 18.43.

The VIX options saw heavy action as more than 949,000 options traded, with 589,000 calls. The VVIX Index, which measures the implied volatility of those options, was up 3.6 percent to 88.04. 

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