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Index, ETF option volumes near midday

Chris McKhann (chris.mckhann@optionmonster.com)

Option volume is light this morning at just 4.3 million contracts traded, with hedging apparently the dominant theme in indexes and ETFs, according to optionMONSTER's tracking systems.

The SPDR S&P 500 Fund (SPY) has 368,000 options traded, with 233,000 puts. The S&P 500 Index (:SPX) options are next up at 211,000, with a put/call ratio of 2 to 1.

Not far behind are the iShares Russell 2000 Fund (IWM) with 197,000 contracts changing hands, dominated by 180,000 puts. The SPDR Gold Shares Fund (GLD) just tops 100,000 contracts, with calls slightly outpacing puts. Just behind are the CBOE Volatility Index (:VIX) options at 98,000, with calls outnumbering puts by 3 to 1.

The iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures Note (VXX) has 71,000 options traded, led by 45,000 calls. The PowerShares QQQ Trust (QQQ) is just behind at 70,000, with puts just outpacing calls.

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