So here I am patting myself on the back about how Dali’s “The Persistence of Memory” is the perfect accompaniment to my nearly finished post on ever shrinking VIX numbers and the warping of our collective sense of time decay…when I decide to visit one of my favorite options blogs. I pause for a second, then do a double take. Oops, that must be my draft post I pulled up by mistake. No, it turns out I am having a surrealist moment of my own. Dali’s melting clocks appeared on the other blog just minutes before they were scheduled to appear on mine.
It felt almost like the CFO of my largest long position had just resigned abruptly, so I have decided to go in another direction today. Make that another continent…
So, today I am introducing the VDAX! Actually, like the VIX and the old VXO, the Deutsche Börse has a new VDAX (aka VDAX-NEW) and an old VDAX. The biggest distinction between the two is that VDAX-NEW is calculated from the implied volatility in the DAX (German counterpart to the DJIA) options looking out 30 days while the original VDAX looks ahead 45 days.
We will discuss the VDAX and other international volatility indices in greater depth at a later date, but for today I want to pose and address two questions:
- What is the correlation between the VIX and the VDAX?
- To what extent does one volatility index lead or lag the other?
In order to answer these questions, I have relied on data for the original VDAX only because I have a better data set. The VDAX and the VDAX-NEW are very highly correlated; in the two graphs below I used data for the original VDAX:
Note the strong correlation between the weekly VDAX and the weekly VIX. In the second chart, the red dotted line and solid ‘best fit’ line for that data series represent the difference between the VDAX and the VIX as a percentage of the VDAX. This difference between the VDAX and the VIX shows that at least over the past year or so, volatility has been dissipating in US markets faster than in the German markets.
As is the case for most comparisons of the
So, from the same continent that brought you Salvador Dali, we have the VDAX – and we also have a date with Dali to discuss volatility in the not too distant future. In the meantime, I will leave you with one of his quotes:
“Have no fear of perfection - you'll never reach it.” ~