Author: Harbourfront Technologies

In the continuation of the “Low Volatility is Not a New Normal” theme, Adam Samson of Financial Times published another post based on the recent report by JPMorgam which suggested using VIX options for managing the risks. Risk assets, like stocks, have been rallying “for years”, sending market volatility near “record lows… While fundamentally volatility…

Read More VIX Options: Should We Buy Them When Volatility is Low?

Last week, JPMorgan issued a report on the state of quantitative investing and the current low volatility environment. The report pointed out that despite the political uncertainties (Comey testimony, UK elections, ECB, geopolitical uncertainty, Qatar etc.), the volatility remains subdued. In fact, in the last 20 years the VIX closed lower than 10 for a…

Read More Low Volatility is Not a New Normal

With the popularity of Exchange Traded Funds on the rise and an exponential increase in short interests in the volatility ETFs, it’s just a question of time that ETF issuers will launch new instruments aiming at the volatility markets in other geographical locations. Indeed, last month, VelocityShares issued 2 new volatility ETFs that allow investors…

Read More VSTOXX European Volatility Exchange Traded Products: EVIX and EXIV

After a sharp move in the VIX a week ago, today the volatility index finished below 10 (9.99 to be exact). It looks like we are going into a low-volatility period again. Last week, just before the volatility spike, Mohamed A. El-Erian warned of the danger of investing in a low-volatility environment. He said that…

Read More Low Volatility and The Danger of Increased Leverage

Last Wednesday saw a huge increase, in percentage terms, of the volatility indices. The 1M spot VIX increased by 46%, while the underlying SPX index decreased by only -1.8%. As discussed in our previous post entitled Is Volatility of Volatility Increasing?, such a big percentage change in the VIX associated with a “normal” down day…

Read More What Caused the Increase in Volatility of Volatility?

In the previous post entitled Relationship Between Credit Default Swaps and Equity Options we discussed about the link between high yield spreads and equity volatility. We also provided an academic reference that formally proved their relationship. Basically, there is a high degree of correlation between the VIX and high yield spreads. Recently, John Lonski of…

Read More Is The Volatility Index VIX Too Low Compared to High-Yield Spreads?

Last week, the volatility index hovered around its lower range. However, the low volatility phenomenon is occurring not only in the equity space, but across the board, from fixed income, to currency, to commodity markets around the world.  Still, experts are divided whether this current low volatility is pricing in the risks correctly. Steve Heston,…

Read More “It might be that VIX is fairly priced for the first time, and that risk is fairly low”

The asset under management (AUM) of the Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) industry has grown substantially in the recent years. From 2007 to the end of 2016, AUM increased from $851 billion to $3.546 trillion. Investors have been enjoying many benefits, especially the low cost, offered by ETFs as a result of this explosive growth. However,…

Read More Risks Involved When Investing in Exchange Traded Funds

Last week, professor and Nobel Laureate Robert Shiller came out with a statement regarding the market high valuation. He referred to the CAPE ratio which is at 29 at the moment and is considered high.  However, he also said that the high CAPE ratio does not necessarily mean investors should sell stocks right now. Still,…

Read More Where are the Cheap Hedges for Equity Portfolios?