Observation and Insight

Steven Schoenfeld

Indexing Israel: Steven Schoenfeld Talks About His Next Index Venture
JohnLothianNews.com
Steven Schoenfeld knows a thing or two about stock indexes as the chief investment officer of BlueStar Indexes and author of the book Active Index Investing. He spoke with John Lothian News editor-in-chief Jim Kharouf about his latest indexes based on Israeli companies and another on Israel’s tech sector. The first is called the BlueStar Israel Invest (BIGI), a comprehensive index launched in 2011 on the top Israeli companies that are traded around the world. The index returned 0.08 percent through September this year. Schoenfeld has also developed a new index focused on Israel’s technology sector, which is among the largest in the world. BlueStar Israel Global Technology Index (BIGTech), features large, mid-cap and small-cap firms listed on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, plus those listed on other markets. Through September, BIGTech posted a 13.5 percent gain over the first three quarters of 2013, and was up 12.7 percent over the past five year period. Schoenfeld said there is still much more room for indexes and index growth, despite critics who say the space has been covered.

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Lead Stories

Here Comes Mini-VIX
Steven M. Sears – Barron’s
It is hard to beat most buy-and-hold investment strategies, but it is even harder for most investors to forget John Maynard Keynes’ dictum that we are all dead in the long run. This is perhaps why so many people focus so heavily on the stock market’s short-term undulations.
http://jlne.ws/186v5cw

Stocks Triumph for a Third Month While Bullion Tumbles
Maria Kolesnikova, Maria Levitov & John Detrixhe – Bloomberg
Global stocks beat all assets for a third month in November, the longest winning streak since 2009, on signs that economic growth is accelerating. Commodities extended declines as gold fell the most since June.
http://jlne.ws/18V24in

Options Trading, Circa 600 B.C.
Adam Warner – Schaeffer’s Investment Research
Listed options began trading a little over 40 years ago, on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE). But the first actual options trade took place quite a few years before that as per Turnkey Analyst (heard through Abnormal Returns).
http://jlne.ws/1bbwjRR

Equities Stay Strong With Weak Volume
John Caiazzo – Dan Collins Report
Watching the markets this week was like watching paint dry. In anticipation of a Thanksgiving mad shopping rush the markets for the month end provided little in the way of excitement. Not nearly as exciting as watching the maniac shoppers at the various malls trying to capitalize on the reduced prices for high end products.
http://jlne.ws/1itrFoM

Videocast: VIX spreads shrinking
optionMONSTER
http://jlne.ws/1itwUou

2,014 in 2014 for S&P 500 suddenly a popular call
Jeff Cox – CNBC
Whether it’s just Wall Street market experts getting cute or there’s something more scientific at play, the idea that the S&P 500 will finish 2014 at, yes, 2,014 has gained another convert.
http://jlne.ws/1itwGgY

Exchanges

CBOE eyes European and Asian markets with BT deal
Jonathan Watkins – Future and Options Intelligence
CBOE has allied with BT to offer European clients local access to CBOE’s Volatility Index (Vix) futures contracts and hopes to extend the partnership into the Asian markets.
http://jlne.ws/1itvQRm

ICE Trade Vault Europe approved by ESMA as trade repository
HedgeWeek
The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has approved ICE Trade Vault Europe as a trade repository for the reporting of swaps and futures trade data to meet requirements of the European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR).
http://jlne.ws/18hWC5p

CME Group Announces Approval of CME European Trade Repository
The Options Insider
On Friday, CME Group announced today that the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has approved its CME European Trade Repository as a Trade Repository (TR) under the European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR).
http://jlne.ws/18hXSWk

Nasdaq plots European swap futures
Anish Puaar – Financial News
Nasdaq OMX is consulting with the market about launching swap futures in Europe that offer a cheaper, exchange-traded alternative to popular over-the-counter derivatives, potentially opening another front in its battle with Eurex.
http://jlne.ws/18hXpTZ

OCC Cleared Contract Volume Declined 6% in November While Year-to-Date Volume is Up 3%
Press Release (OCC)
OCC announced today that cleared contract volume in November reached 318,233,056 contracts, a 6 percent decrease from the November 2012 volume of 339,206,527 contracts. Despite this monthly volume decline, OCC reported a year-to-date increase in options, futures and securities lending activity. OCC’s year-to-date total cleared contract volume reached 3,844,949,842 contracts in November, up 3 percent from 2012.
http://jlne.ws/1itqt4K

The Options Industry Council Announces November Options Volume Decreased 6 Percent
Press Release (OIC)
The Options Industry Council (OIC) announced today that 314,465,376 total options contracts traded in November, down 6.28 percent compared to last November when 335,527,473 contracts were traded
However, year-to-date volume remains up and stood at 3,791,066,303 contracts, 2.70 percent more than the same point last year when 3,691,342,837 contracts were traded. Average daily volume for the month was 15,723,269 contracts, 1.59 percent less than last November’s 15,977,499 contracts.
http://jlne.ws/1itqF3V

CBOE Holdings Reports November Volume
Press Release (CBOE)
CBOE Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: CBOE) reported today that November trading volume for options contracts on Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) and C2 Options Exchange (C2SM) and futures contracts on CBOE Futures ExchangeSM (CFE) totaled 91.90 million contracts. Average daily volume (ADV) was nearly 4.60 million contracts, a six-percent increase from November 2012 and a 16-percent decrease from October 2013.
Year to date, CBOE Holdings ADV rose three percent from the same period a year ago.
http://jlne.ws/1its1eY

CBOE Futures Exchange Reports November Trading Volume
The CBOE Futures Exchange, LLC (CFE®) today reported  November 2013 trading volume for total exchange-wide activity and for futures on the CBOE Volatility Index® (VIX® Index). Additionally, the second phase of the expansion of extended trading hours for VIX futures successfully launched during the month and futures on the CBOE Russell 2000® Volatility Index were listed.
http://jlne.ws/1dM1gk2

Regulation and Enforcement

Obama nominee would lead CFTC at pivotal time
Ben Goad and Megan R. Wilson – The Hill
President Obama’s choice to lead the Commodity Futures Trading Commission would take the agency’s helm at a crucial moment, with the derivatives regulator poised to flex new muscles in the face of fierce opposition and a strained budget.
http://jlne.ws/18VF4Qm

Exemptions in the balance as Volcker debate draws to a close
Peter Madigan -Risk Magazine
Two years on from its first draft, the Volcker rule is close to being finalised, but some regulators are still trying to close what they see as loopholes – and dealers see as vital freedoms.
http://jlne.ws/1bdMvPa

Technology

5 Best Online Broker Platforms For Options Traders
Vincent Mao – Investor’s Business Daily
IBD’s 2013 Best Online Brokers Survey found the five options trading platforms that clients rated highest. They were OptionsXpress, TD Ameritrade (AMTD), Interactive Brokers, Charles Schwab (SCHW) and TradeStation.
http://jlne.ws/18hUQRR
**Note: JLN Options does not have an opinion on this list one way or another.  It is simply offered as a data point for our readers.  – JB

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