VIX and its futures rise as equities fall

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The major equity indexes lost more ground yesterday, driving the CBOE Volatility Index and its futures higher once again.

The S&P 500 was down 10.40 points, or 0.67 percent, to 1541.61. It slipped as low as 1536 with about an hour left in the day before bouncing back. Resistance remains at 1597 and support at 1500.

The Nasdaq 100 again fared the worst of the three indexes, losing just over 40 points, or 1.44 percent, to finish at 2741.95 after dipping as low as 2731. Those were its lowest levels since March 1. The NDX continues to have resistance at 2864, but it broke through another level of support, which is now at 2700.

The Russell 2000 gave up 5.29 points, or 0.58 percent, to close at 901.51 after briefly dipping below 899. That leaves the small-cap index back where it was on Feb. 26. The high of 954 remains resistance, while support is at 875.

The VIX was up 1.05 points, or 6.36 percent, to 17.56. It reached a session high of 18.20 with an hour left to the bell.

The May and June VIX futures were both up 0.70 points to 17.15 and 17.45 respectively, though both remain at a discount to the spot volatility index. The action in those futures had the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures Note (:VXX) up 5.2 percent to 22.17.

The VIX options turned over 714,000 contracts, with 385,000 calls. The VXX traded 597,000 options, 316,000 of which were puts.


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