Fear & Greed Index
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125-day moving average
It’s useful to look at stock market levels compared to where they’ve been over the past few months. When the S&P 500 is above its moving or rolling average of the prior 125 trading days, that’s a sign of positive momentum. But if the index is below this average, it shows investors are getting skittish. The Fear & Greed Index uses slowing momentum as a signal for Fear and a growing momentum for Greed.
A few big stocks can skew returns for the market. It’s important to also know how many stocks are doing well versus those that are struggling. This shows the number of stocks on the NYSE at 52-week highs compared to those at 52-week lows. When there are many more highs than lows, that’s a bullish sign and signals Greed.
The market is made up of thousands of stocks. And on any given day, investors are actively buying and selling them. This measure looks at the amount, or volume, of shares on the NYSE that are rising compared to the number of shares that are falling. A low (or even negative) number is a bearish sign. The Fear & Greed Index uses decreasing trading volume as a signal for Fear.
Options are contracts that give investors the right to buy or sell stocks, indexes or other financial securities at an agreed upon price and date. Puts are the option to sell while calls are the option to buy. When the ratio of puts to calls is rising, it is usually a sign investors are growing more nervous. A ratio above 1 is considered bearish. The Fear & Greed Index uses a bearish options ratio as a signal for Fear.