The Cboe Volatility Index, or VIX, spiked Monday amid a broader market sell-off that sent the Dow Jones Industrial Average tumbling 335 points.
The VIX rose more than 3 points to 19.02 by 4 p.m. New York time. The VIX, which is also known as the investor fear gauge, uses the price of options on the S&P 500 to estimate how volatile those options will be between the current date and the option's expiration date. Earlier this year, the VIX rose as high as 50 before paring those gains.
"Based on the price action of the market, and the movement in the VIX, I think we are still set up for more downside," Mark Sebastian, the founder of OptionPit.com, wrote for TheStreet's sister publication Real Money. "Decent chance VIX could be 23 to 25 by [the end of the day], especially with March futures expiring on Wednesday. Truthfully, I cannot find a good reason to buy right now."