Weekly Stock Market Commentary 7/31/15

By Lawrence G. McMillan

The chart of $SPX is the least bullish of the indicators. SPX remains in the 2040-2135 trading range that has bound it for most of this year. Basically this is a neutral chart.

Put-call ratios are much more encouraging. A strong buy signal has been generated by the standard put-call ratio (Figure 2). The weighted equity-only put-call ratio is also bullish (Figure 3).

Market breadth remains mixed, with the NYSE-based indicator now on a buy signal, but the "stocks only" is not.

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The Option Strategist Newsletter Volume 24, No. 14 Preview

By Lawrence G. McMillan

With this issue, we attempted to return to the normal publishing schedule – the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of the month.  However, due to some scheduling issues, the full newsletter was not available until Sunday, July 26th, although the Hotline was published on time on Friday, July 24th.  

Weekly Stock Market Commentary 7/24/15

By Lawrence G. McMillan

$SPX now appears to failing at the top of the range, thereby remaining within the 2040 - 2135 trading range. Hence, the $SPX chart remains neutral as long as it's in that trading range.

Put-call ratios are mixed, but generally are in an oversold state. The standard ratio continues to rise and is thus on a sell signal.  The weighted ratio, however, has rolled over to a buy signal.

$VIX Weekly Futures Begin Trading

By Lawrence G. McMillan

The CBOE has listed $VIX weekly futures – their third attempt at a weekly volatility product that might compete with VXX weekly options.  Trading began on July 23rd.  

It is estimated that options on the new $VIX weekly futures will begin trading in three or four weeks, although that isn’t set in stone.  Certain details have to worked out with the OCC, such a margin requirements.  Typically, in the past, those things have taken three or four weeks.

Weekly Stock Market Commentary 7/17/15

By Lawrence G. McMillan

The oversold conditions that existed last week generated a strong week-long rally. The move above 2100 was constructive, but the chart won't really turn bullish until new highs are made and held.That would require a move above 2135.

Put buying has remained relatively heavy, despite the rally. As a result, the equity-only put-call ratios remain in an uptrend and thus remain on sell signals.

Weekly Stock Market Commentary 7/10/15

By Lawrence G. McMillan

The $SPX chart is now negative, although not terribly so. $SPX traded down to 2045 a couple of days, and has generally found support in the 2040-2050 area. Overhead, there is resistance at 2080-2085, where most trading days in the last week have topped out.  There is a series of lower highs on the chart, and the 20-day moving average is declining.  All of that adds up to a bearish chart.

Equity-only put-call ratios are bearish, as they continue to rise daily.

Volatility Rises (and Falls) - $VIX

By Lawrence G. McMillan

It’s been quite some time since we’ve seen the CBOE Volatility Index ($VIX) rise above the 17 level – since early February, in fact.  But it did so this week, accompanied by strong advances in the other CBOE Volatility Indices, as well as Volatility Futures, ETFs, and ETNs.  These advances in volatility create trading opportunities, mostly when they reverse.  In this article, we’re going to review the most pertinent signals, and look at their track records.

Weekly Stock Market Commentary 7/3/15

By Lawrence G. McMillan

$SPX broke down this week as a confluence of potentially bad international news out of Greece, Puerto Rico, and China combined to strike fear into what had been long-complacent U.S. traders.

$SPX has now rallied back above 2070, returning to the previous trading range. From a more bearish viewpoint, though, the 20-day moving average is now trending downward, and there is a series of lower highs on the chart. That is bearish.

The Search For The Holy Grail Of Volatility Trading

By Lawrence G. McMillan

Depending on your viewpoint, the “holy grail” of volatility trading can take on a different meanings.  To traders, it’s a product that tracks $VIX closely, if not exactly.  To exchanges and market makers, it’s a liquid product that draws a lot of trading interest.

Trading or investing whether on margin or otherwise carries a high level of risk, and may not be suitable for all persons. Leverage can work against you as well as for you. Before deciding to trade or invest you should carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience, and ability to tolerate risk. The possibility exists that you could sustain a loss of some or all of your initial investment or even more than your initial investment and therefore you should not invest money that you cannot afford to lose. You should be aware of all the risks associated with trading and investing, and seek advice from an independent financial advisor if you have any doubts. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results.
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