Volume in exchange traded products nearly doubled in August as traders tapped the vehicles to play the market’s violent swings, according to new research.

“Trading typically slows in August, but this year surged 99% from July. Total monthly dollar volume across all ETPs surpassed $2.9 trillion,” said Ron Rowland, founder of Invest With An Edge. “An average day in August saw $127 billion of ETPs change hands.”

The Securities and Exchange Commission is looking into whether leveraged ETFs magnified the volatility in the stock market last month as trading in the financial products jumped. [SEC Investigating Leveraged ETFs]

In August, the number of ETFs averaging more than $1 billion in daily trading activity doubled to 20 and accounted for more than 73% of all ETP dollars traded, Rowland said, adding that SPDR S&P 500 (NYSEArca: SPY) alone represented more than a third of all trading activity.

Total industry assets stood at $1.06 trillion at the end of August for a 5.4% increase year to date, according to the report.

SPDR S&P 500

Full disclosure: Tom Lydon’s clients own SPY.

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