Russell Rhoads, CFA

Senior Instructor
The Options Institute
Russell Rhoads, CFA, is a Senior Instructor with the Options Institute at the Chicago Board Options Exchange. He joined the Institute in 2008 after a career as an investment analyst and trader with a variety of firms including Highland Capital Management, Caldwell & Orkin Investment Counsel, TradeLink Securities and Millenium Management. He is a financial author and editor having contributed to multiple magazines and edited several books for Wiley publishing. In 2008 he wrote Candlestick Charting For Dummies. Since joining the Options Institute he authored Option Spread Trading: A Comprehensive Guide to Strategies and Tactics which was released in January 2011 and recently finished work on Trading VIX Derivatives: Trading and Hedging Strategies Using VIX Futures, Options, and Exchange Traded Notes which was published in August 2011. He recently finished work on The Warren Buffett Way 3rd Edition Workbook and Trading Weekly Options: Pricing Characteristics and Short Term-Trading Strategies. In addition to his duties for the CBOE, he is an adjunct instructor at Benedictine University  and acts as an instructor for the Options Industry Council. He is a double graduate of the University of Memphis with a BBA ('92) and an MS ('94) in Finance and also received a Master's Certificate in Financial Engineering from the Illinois Institute of Technology in 2003.

Author Archives: Russell Rhoads, CFA

VIX Last Week – 11/22/2015

The VIX term structure returned to normal from slight backwardation last week as the S&P 500 rose over 3%.  Two years ago a 3% move in the S&P 500 probably would have resulted in VIX under 12.00, but these are different times and with a rate hike looming down to the mid 15’s is the […]

Volatility Indexes and ETPs Last Week – 11/22/2015

The shift for the VXST – VIX – VXV – VXMT curve was dramatic, but sort of what we have become use to in this buy on the dip culture.  VIX finished the week under 16.00, which voids a prediction that I had for the rest of the year.  I felt concerns about a December […]

Block Trades Using VIX Weeklys

Tomorrow is November VIX settlement, but that hasn’t stopped some short term VIX traders from putting on new positions, in fact it may have encouraged them to do some trading. I ventured down to the trader floor late today to see what may be going on in the VIX Weeklys options set to settle on […]

VIX Last Week – 11/15/2015

VIX managed a finish over 20 as Friday’s market action raised the level of concern among market participants.  You have to wonder if Friday August 21st and the follow through on the 24th is still fresh in trader’s minds. The short term curve flattened out which seems to be the norm when VIX move higher, […]

Volatility Indexes and ETPs Last Week – 11/15/2015

The S&P 500 took a dive last week in what turned out to be the second worst weekly performance of 2015.  As of Friday the S&P 500 is down 1.7% for the year which would be the first noticeable loss (2011 was down less than 0.01%) since 2008.  The four volatility indexes that use S&P […]

VIX Last Week – 11/8/2015

VIX finished the week closer to 14 than 15 based on a muted response to the employment number and a lack of known potential volatility events on the horizon.  The fear index did manage to spend a little time on Monday and Tuesday under 14.00 which is a level that many consider the new ‘floor’ […]

Volatility Indexes and ETPs Last Week – 11/8/2015

The S&P 500 quietly rose just under 1% last week and VIX worked lower.  Across the board S&P 500 focused volatility indexes dropped with the possibility that any threat of increased volatility in the markets has been pushed out to 2016.  Of course back in August those same indexes dropped as the economic calendar was […]

First CBOE Risk Management Asia Agenda

Everyone at CBOE is looking forward to the first Asian version of the popular Risk Management Conference to be held November 30 to December 1 in Hong Kong.  Just today the preliminary schedule was just posted at which also works for registering to attend. Topics to be covered at the conference include volatility oriented […]

Volatility Indexes and ETPs Last Week – 11/1/2015

When I do these blogs I get the data, create the graphics and look at the markets.  I share these mundane facts about my ‘process’ to make a point about the diagram below.  Last week we got an FOMC meeting (although one without a press conference) and GDP number behind us without the stock market […]

VIX Last Week – 11/1/2015

VIX, VIX futures and the S&P 500 all moved higher last week.  It happens, but with a couple of major economic events/numbers behind us (FOMC / 3Q GDP) and stocks moving up (although slightly) it was a bit surprising to see all that green when compiling data for this blog. The curve below is a […]


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