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If the VIX rises on Monday...


The large rise in the VIX from yesterday is getting a lot of attention. However, it should be noted that since the CBOE switched to their new formula a couple of months ago, the way the VIX behaves has changed.

Looking back over reconstructed data available from the CBOE from 1990 through the present, the VIX has risen 70% of the time on Mondays, but only 38% of the time on Fridays - regardless of market direction - due to how the new formula treats calendar vs. trading days. I'm not going to go over the theoreticals of the formula, partly because I don't think they're that important for this discussion, and partly because an expert like John Succo could give you a much better reasoning of it.

Further, If we look at days in which the S&P closes lower than the day before, the VIX had a 92% chance of rising if it was a Monday (and it gained an average of over 6%), but only a 67% chance if it was a Friday (with an average gain of under 3%). For days in which the S&P dropped by 0.5% or more, if it was Monday the VIX rose 97% of the time (avg gain of over 8%), but if it was Friday the VIX rose 78% of the time (avg gain under 5%).

A (possibly large) part of Monday's jump in the VIX was NOT due to fear - it was due to a quirk in the formula.
No positions in stocks mentioned.

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