Leveraged ETFs Enjoy Spike in Volatility, But Have a Plan in Place

Risk-off events that coincide with greater market volatility may be a headache for some, but for others, the wide swings open an opportunity to quickly capitalize on the turns with leveraged and inverse exchange traded funds.

The CBOE Volatility Index, or VIX, surged 41.9% Thursday. Additionally, VIX futures-related ETFs climbed, with the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures ETN (NYSEArca: VXX) up 13.9%, ProShares VIX Short-Term Futures ETF (NYSEArca: VIXY) up 14.7%, VelocityShares Daily Long VIX Short-Term ETN (NYSEArca: VIIX) up 13.9% and REX VolMAXX Long VIX Weekly Futures Strategy ETF (BATS: VMAX) up 18.7%.

Traders may have also jumped on proxies for safe-haven gold through gold miners, like Direxion Daily Junior Gold Miners Index Bull 3x Shares (NYSEArca: JNUG) and Direxion Daily Gold Miners Bull 3X Shares (NYSEArca: NUGT), which are up 4.8% and 6.4%, respectively.

Meanwhile, the equities market and sector-specific plays have been hit by the recent risk-off sentiment. For instance, the Direxion Daily Technology Bull 3X Shares (NYSEArca: TECL) declined 5.9% Thursday.