Stocks failed to hold onto gains, as the market struggled to find direction all session. Technology, health care and consumer discretionary sectors gained, while financials and industrials declined. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended down 17.64 points, or 0.17%, to close at 10,526. The S&P 500 lost 0.80 points, or 0.07%, to close at 1121, and the Nasdaq was up 4.06 points, or 0.18%, to finish at 2289.

The CBOE Volatility Index (CBOE) - Get Report put spreaders were active, rolling September into October. VIX closed up $0.28, at $21.50. VIX put volume of 178,000 contracts compared to call volume of 119,000, with October 22 and 25 puts active.

The SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY) - Get Report volatility is at the low end of range, suggesting stable October price movement. SPY closed down $0.07, at $112.65. SPY October put option implied volatility of 20 is below a level of 26 from late August. Put volume of 919,000 contracts, compared to call volume of 569,000 with October 110 and October 112 puts active.

Volatility decreased on the PowerShares QQQ Trust (QQQQ) in morning trading, on confidence of the NASDAQ rally. It then increased in late afternoon trading, as the rally fizzled out. QQQQ closed up $0.20, at $47.45. QQQQ October put option implied volatility is at 21, November is at 24 and December is at 26, below its three-month average of 26, which indicates decreasing price movement. QQQQ put option of 216,000 contacts compared to 166,000 calls, with active spreading volume as spreaders roll September positions into October.

The yen advanced to a 15-year high against the dollar, as Prime Minister Naoto Kan beat his rival in a party vote today. The Dollar Index, which gauges the U.S. currency against six major trading partners, decreased 1%. The CurrencyShares Japanese Yen Trust (FXY) - Get Report closed up $0.81, at $119.13. The FXY reflects the price of Japanese yen plus accrued interest. FXY overall option implied volatility of 12 is near its 26-week average, suggesting non-directional price movement.

Gold was up 2%, at $1272.00 per ounce and the SPDR Gold Trust ETF (GLD) - Get Report closed up $2.40, at $124.02. September put option implied volatility is at 16, October is at 17 and December is at 20 versus its 26-week average of 22. GLD put option volume of 185,000 compared to 226,000 calls according to Track Data, suggesting decreasing near-term price movement.

The earnings calendar for Wednesday is very quiet, but there is a lot of economic data including: MBA Purchase Applications 7 a.m. EDT, Empire State Manufacturing Survey 8:30 a.m. EDT, Import and Export Prices 8:30 a.m. EDT, Industrial Production 9:15 a.m. EDT, EIA Petroleum Status Report 10:30 a.m. EDT.

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