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Index, ETF option volumes near midday

Chris McKhann (chris.mckhann@optionmonster.com)

Total option volume has dropped from last week as just over 5 million contracts have changed hands so far today, and hedging appears to be leading the way in the indexes and ETFs, according to optionMONSTER data systems.

The SPDR S&P 500 Fund (:SPY) has 727,000 options traded, with puts outpacing calls by more than 2 to 1. Next up are the iShares Russell 2000 Fund (IWM) options with 272,000 and a put/call ratio of 3 to 1.

The S&P 500 Index (:SPX) options have turned over 132,000 times, led by 94,000 puts. Also with 132,000 contracts is the PowerShares QQQ Trust (QQQ), which has a put/call ratio of 2 to 1.

The CBOE Volatility Index (:VIX) has seen 106,000 contracts change hands, with 80,000 calls. Just behind are the SPDR Gold Shares Trust (GLD) options at 104,000, with puts slightly outnumbering calls.

The iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures Note (:VXX) has 89,000 contracts traded, with 47,000 puts. The iShares Emerging Markets Fund (:EEM) has seen 86,000 options trade, with 65,000 puts.

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