This Week in Russell 2000 and Nasdaq-100 Volatility – 2/28/2014

Both the Nasdaq-100 and Russell 2000 are now handily beating the performance of the S&P 500 in 2014.  Despite headlines highlighting the S&P 500 closing Friday at an all-time high, the winners this year so far is the tech sector with the Nasdaq-100 up just under 3% with the Russell 2000 (representing domestic or small cap stocks – depending on who you ask) up 1.67% this year. In the volatility space the CBOE Russell 2000 Volatility Index (RVX) continues to remain at a premium relative to the S&P 500 when compared to 2013.  In 2013 RVX was on average at a 3.90 premium to VIX and the widest that reading got was 6.12.  The average in 2014 has been over 4.30 and the spread has actually widened out to over 7 points.   On Friday RVX closed 5.52 points higher than VIX.  A final note on the spread – the March RVX Futures settled at a 4.65 point premium to the March VIX contract.  It appears the market doesn’t expect this spread to stay as wide as it is. VIX RVX