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The 'Fear Index' Hasn't Been This Low Since 1993

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The 'Fear Index' Hasn't Been This Low Since 1993

The volatility index, commonly dubbed as the "fear index," hasn't this been low in years. But how many years exactly? Two? Five? Ten?

Try 23 years.

The CBOE volatility index traded to 9.37 on Friday, marking its lowest level since December 27, 1993, CNBC noted. Accordingly, the exchange-traded note that tracks the index, the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures TM ETN (NYSE: VXX), traded at its lowest levels ever at $12.85.

What's surprising is the index is trading at a multi-decade low despite Thursday's much anticipated former FBI Director James Comey testimony and the overnight surprise election results in the United Kingdom.

Who Cares

Does anyone care about domestic events? The surprise UK election? North Korea tension? Continued tensions in the Middle East? The answer to each is clearly no — based on the volatility index.

In fact, the volatility index is screaming investors "don't give a damn," notable investor and "Shark Tank" personality Kevin O'Leary told CNBC Thursday. While investors might take some comfort in knowing the level of fear is so low it unfortunately translates to a "boring" market for active investors.

O'Leary went on to acknowledge he bought a "whole lot" of volatility index products ahead of Comey's testimony. Once the testimony had ended the volatility index trade was a losing one, and if anything, it may signal that the odds of a Trump impeachment is now "zero."

"I put a lot of weight into the VIX," he concluded. "I got nothing back for it. There's no volatility here."

Related Links:

Dennis Gartman On Why Volatility Isn't A Measure Of Bullishness Or Bearishness

'50 Cent' Trader Has Been Hoarding VIX Call Options Since December

 

Related Articles (VXX)

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