Development and promise of the VIX on the 10th anniversary

A panel discussion featuring four experts will survey the development and promise of volatility products. The panelists will include volatility product traders and users.

Topics include:

-The tenth anniversary of the launch of VIX index futures on March 26, 2004,
-The launch of new volatility indexes and products since then,
-Discussion of VIX contract performance in periods of market turbulence,
-Discussion of contract design, pricing, and contango issues, and
-Applications, including managing portfolio tail risk and enhancing risk-adjusted returns.


Mike Edleson, Ph.D., CFA, Chief Risk Officer, Office of Investments, University of Chicago
Joanne Hill, Ph.D., Head of Investment Strategy, ProShare Advisors
Jamie Tyrell, VIX Options Market-maker, Group One Trading
Krag “Buzz” Gregory, Ph.D., Managing Director, Goldman Sachs

Moderator: Matt Moran, Vice President of Business Development, CBOE

Date: Wednesday March 26, 2014

Time: 5pm to 7pm

Venue: Chicago Board of Options Exchange (CBOE) 400 S. LaSalle Street, Chicago, IL

For more information and registration click here

About QWAFAFEW: an informal organization of quantitatively oriented professionals in various aspects of financial services (primarily investment management). The group was formed a number of years ago to provide a venue for quantitative researchers to discuss their evolving work with peers. The members span the gamut from owners and senior executives of investment related organizations to recent entrants to the industry.

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Great Secrets Of The Web Design Experts

With the economy hurting and unemployment a lingering issue, lots of individuals are finding the Internet to be the place to make a living. Web design is important for a successful website. Keep reading to find some excellent ideas with regard to web design that you can implement to ensure the success of your business.

Choose the right graphic formats for your site. Do not use bitmap for your images as they take up too much space. Consider PNG files for non-photographic images, text buttons or screenshots that require over 256 colors. If not, use a GIF. For photos, JPEG images work well.

Avoid using so-called “mystery meat navigation”. This involves using unlabeled images or other elements for the site’s navigation. In many cases, the visitor has to mouse over the buttons to even see what they do. Navigation is best kept simple. Use text links across the top or along the left side of the page.

Pay careful attention to which colors you choose to use together in your web design. Your content should be read easily without assistance or adjustment. Using dark colored text on a light colored background generally ensures that the text is easy for visitors to read. Let some of your friends see your site and give you some advice before going live.

Be wary of web hosting companies who claim that they offer unlimited bandwidth to their customers. Usually there is something that is written in the small print that is far different than that. In many cases people end up having problems when it comes to fair use policies.

Put in a search box that lets visitors search through your site content. Visitors may look for something specific, and that box will be the one of the first things they look for. When there isn’t one available, they may just decide to try another site where they can find that information. Always put the box somewhere near the right page’s top because people will look for it there.

Always ensure you are giving meaningful feedback, as this is what creates the communication between a website and its visitors. For example, if an action taken by a visitor results in an error, do not simply display “error occurred.” Instead, provide a message that explains what happened and how the visitor can correct the error by taking a different action. Without this feedback, visitors are more likely to grow frustrated and just give up by leaving your website.

To help beginning web designers create good-looking site you should use Photoshop. Using a program like Photoshop can help amateur web designers create professional looking sites really fast. You will expend a lot of extra time and lessen your chances of creating a professional site if you neglect investing in programs such as Photoshop.

Try designing for all screen resolutions. A simple website can always encourage visitors to remain and read the content. If your site doesn’t look good for a specific resolution, the visitor may leave since they cannot view it. Designing a stretchier layout that fits any screen resolution lets you know that all visitors can enjoy the content.

To help make sure your website works as you are designing it, test it one of the browsers like Internet Explorer. When you test the website as you go along building it, you can quickly correct any problems that might show up once you live. When your website goes live you want your visitors to be able to see everything working correctly.

It is not hard to design a website. Following these tips should help to simplify things. Regardless of your reasons for getting into website design, the tips here can help you create a beautiful website.

Jim Sinclair: Russia is one move away from collapsing U.S. economy

On March 17, commodities adviser Jim Sinclair spoke in an interview with Greg Hunter of USA Watchdog on gold, the markets, and ongoing events taking place between the U.S. and Russia over Ukraine. During the 30 minute interview, Sinclair laid out a chilling scenario where Russia has positioned themselves to be one move away from collapsing the U.S. economy, and that one wrong move by President Obama could set the entire scenario in motion.

Jim Sinclair: To sanction Russia is to forget that Russia supplies Europe with its gas supplies. I honestly believe sanctioning Russia is the same as shooting yourself in the foot.

Greg Hunter: So Russia could not only say hey, we want gold for our payment (oil), but they could say, hey… we want you to pay us in rubles.

JS: Or pay us in anything. Also, it makes energy cheaper. Why would anyone want to pay in dollars if they can pay in their own currency?

GH: Once Russia started doing that, would there be any coming back from it? (For the dollar) Wouldn’t that be the beginning of the end for the Petro-Dollar?

JS: Russia has the capacity, the inclination of course, to do just one single thing… accept payment for energy in any currency you wish to give. – USA Watchdog
Since the U.S. tied the dollar to oil, the future of America’s monetary system and economy was reliant upon all global oil producers following the Petro-Dollar agreement, which from 1974 to the present has been backed by our economic and military power. But as Russia rose from the ashes of the former Soviet Union, and grew into becoming the world’s largest oil producing nation, the U.S. could no longer enforce the Petro-Dollar through economic and military threats since Russia is their equal when you consider their alliances with China and other BRICs nations.

It is said that stock markets are forward thinking and project what will happen six months into the future. And if you look at what has taken place for the dollar since Ukraine’s uprising started and Russia moved into the Crimea, the dollar itself by falling below 80 on the dollar index, is telling the world that it not only recognizes the potential of becoming irrelevant should Russia bypass the SWIFT system and begin selling oil in any other currency or asset class, but that the U.S. could potentially trigger its own demise by imposing sanctions using the SWIFT system as a weapon, and force Russia to enact their nuclear economic option.

In a global environment where perceptions are reversed, and the United States is now being seen by the world as the ‘Evil Empire’, Russia is using America’s own Petro-Dollar system against them to grow in power and bring the U.S. to the brink of economic collapse. And whether it is Russia or the U.S. itself that pulls the trigger, the future is inevitably rushing towards an end of dollar hegemony. The only question that remains is whether the U.S. has another plan ready to fill the gap, just as they did when they left the gold standard and replaced it with the oil standard forty plus years ago.

Wait..What Did I Buy Again With My Credit Card?

How many times have you looked at your credit card statement and wondered this? Wait, you aren’t looking at your statements? Well, that’s another story. Since I review my statements often, especially given all of the well-publicized data breaches lately, I occasionally come across very ominous looking charges like this one:

SQ *JDoe $15.00

After a little process of elimination, given the day of the week, Saturday, and the amount, I determined that it was for a Square payment I had made to a taxi driver. Ok, fine, but why wasn’t this completely spelled out on my statement? Why does it have to be so difficult to figure these items out right away? And, what’s more was that it was listed as “Uncategorized” on my statement. Now, how am I am supposed to account for my credit card spending easily and accurately when I get tons of those showing up?

In another example of poorly categorized and coded transactions, Mrs. Edge used to work at Freddie Mac, the mortgage provider, and every time she ate at their cafe, they coded the transaction as a “loan.” That’s not right, and since then, I have grown frustrated with the transaction coding on all of my bank statements; debit cards, too. In one case, I almost protested a charge before realizing I had made it. We shouldn’t have to do this as consumers, and it makes me wonder, how many transactions have been protested, reversed, and later realized to be accurate? Every time a bank reverses a charge (presumably that is not reimbursed by the party who issued the charge), it loses money, and well, say what you might about banks, that still means jobs are at stake. So, you’d think that the industry would wise up and standardize coding.

While major banks (if you are reading this) are probably not going to change this practice overnight, I would totally appreciate standardizing transaction and category coding to help make credit card accounting for our purchases more user-friendly. I am available to work on this right away.

Market impact: Ukraine presidential election

Ukraine held its presidential election Sunday, May 25, and exit polls indicate that candy tycoon Petro Poroshenko was elected. The billionaire vowed “to bring peace to the Ukrainian land”, maintain strong ties to Europe, and mend relations with Russia.

Petro Poroshenko was the former foreign minister, and a major supporter of closer ties with Europe. He was the only tycoon who publicly supported the protestors in Kiev’s Independence Square. He faces a huge challenge to unite Ukraine, which is already in a deadly civil conflict with rebels that have declared a separatist republic.

In Eastern Ukraine, where pro-Russian separatists seized government buildings and the fighting with Ukraine soldiers was fierce, less than 20 percent of the polling stations were open “after gunmen intimidated locals by smashing ballot boxes”. Nationwide it is estimated that the turnout was 60 percent of 35.5 million eligible voters, of which Poroshenko received nearly 56 percent (out of 21 candidates).

In the interim, Russian President Vladimir Putin publicly stated that he will respect the results of Sunday’s election and work closely with the newly elected president. There have been no reports of any fighting between Ukraine soldiers and pro-Russian separatists since the election.

The White House praised the Ukraine government for carrying out the election despite the violence in East Ukraine with pro-Russian separatists. The U.S. and Germany had threatened increased sanctions against Russia if the election was disrupted.

Market Impact

It is too early to determine the impact of the Ukraine presidential election on the U.S. and European markets. In Asia, which just closed, all markets advanced except the Hang Seng.

At the close, the Asian markets are: Asia Dow up 0.65%; Nikkei 225 up 0.97%; Hang Seng down -0.03%; Shanghai up 0.17%; Sensex up 1.70%; Singapore up 0.09%.

The U.S. markets are closed Monday for Memorial Day. Trading will resume on Tuesday.

If the Markets move down on Tuesday, stay on the side lines or consider Contra ETFs. For Option players, selling premium is advised.

Lifestyles shift

Whether you’re ready or not, as life changes, so do your housing needs. Families grow. Careers unfold.

One way or another, your circumstances change, and you may find yourself looking for a more comfortable home, one that’s in a new locale, or just a better place for your current living pattern.

The home financing process has changed, too. Your lender can make moving to your next home easier. The vast menu of home financing options now available includes fast approval decisions, low down payment programs, and flexible rate, term, and closing cost options.

Financing a home is not a once-in-a-lifetime decision, and the financing package you used to buy your first home may not meet your needs the next time around. An experienced home mortgage originator will help you find a home financing solution that supports your current and future homeownership goals.

The majority of American homeowners purchase multiple homes in their lifetimes. Each time you buy a home, you need to reevaluate your needs and goals. So whether you are trading in your first home for a larger one nearby, relocating for the tenth time, or looking to move to a new area for a lifestyle change, your lender is here to help you reach your dreams.

Assembling the right TEAM

Real estate agents make it their business to know everything about communities and the homes within them. A good real estate agent can:

Establish what you want in a home. Communicating your desires is essential to helping your real estate agent find you the right home.
Search the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and other resources for homes that match your needs.
Show you appropriate homes.
Provide valuable information on communities, comparable values of neighboring homes, tax rates, and building code regulations.
Help you formulate an offer on the home you want to buy.
Act as an intermediary between you and the seller, smoothing the negotiating process.
When you’ve got a good list of names, interview at least two or three of the agents. In addition to having experience in the area where you hope to buy your home, the agent you choose should be trustworthy and easy to talk to. Tell them what you’re interested in and ask if they can provide some additional information about area schools, taxes, or some other special interest. Then see how quickly they respond and how accurately they follow your request. Once you’ve selected an agent, stick with that agent even when you’re looking at homes listed by other agencies. A good agent will make it his or her business to be familiar with all the listings in your chosen area. Contacting a different real estate agent simply because you’re attracted to a listing of theirs is counter-productive when you’ve built a level of familiarity and trust with your selected agent.

This article links to several different real estate agents in Indiana who are exceptional at what representing buyers and sellers.

Vegan “Shamrock Shake”

Those who are lactose intolerant or vegan have not been able to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a “Shamrock Shake” for McDonald’s, but that will soon change as has published a recipe for the vegan version of the popular shake.

This recipe yields two servings and is almost like the real thing.

Gather these ingredients:

Green Food Coloring (preferably plant based instead of chemical)
2 Cups of vanilla flavored coconut milk ice cream (or really any dairy free ice cream really)
1.5 Cups vanilla flavored almond milk (rice milk will do)
.25 Teaspoon pure mint extract (you can play around with the amount until the flavor is good for you)

Then, blend these ingredients in a blender or food processor.

For a garnish you can also add:
A dollop of dairy free topping or coconut whipped cream
Green sprinkles
A maraschino cherry

For best flavor, you should drink this immediately, so it doesn’t melt.

Superb Guidance For Restoring Your Personalized Financial

It is essential that you manage your personal funds. There are a number of stuff that you can do to help you recognize your fiscal deals. As you may acquire understanding of your very own monetary scenario, you can begin to apply your expertise to apply your funds in the easiest way possible.

Be careful not to make any long distance calls while traveling. Most cellphones have free roaming nowadays. Even when you are sure your cellphone has cost-free roaming, see the fine print. Make sure you are conscious of what “free roaming” involves. In the same way, be careful about making phone calls whatsoever in rooms in hotels.

Don’t be special! Most companies toss a process-golf ball inside their agreement- a part stating you are able to only deal with them. If you want to obtain the most cash for yourself, keep away from all those businesses that expect you to signal these. It’s best to work for a business prepared to talk about the area, they are not only more confident inside their products, they also are more inclined to have the best pursuits at heart.

When you go to the financial institution or possibly a home loan broker and you get pre-approved for a mortgage loan you must subtract 20 % off the quantity they are giving to offer you and also just take that volume. This will likely help you stay safe from any unanticipated financial circumstances which could come up.

Prevent incorporating placements to burning off investments. Don’t let a couple of dropping deals to become the beginning of a number of shedding deals in a row. It’s far better just to take out and begin again at yet another time. Just each day clear of buying and selling can help you from your funk when you choose to business again.

Make certain you are getting each of the taxation credits in which you happen to be called. Consider the subsequent income tax credits: Child Attention Credit history, Child Income tax Credit score, Life-time Studying Credit rating, Acquired Revenue Credit score and Wish Scholarship Credit rating. Look at the IRS’s website for a complete list of tax credits that you might be eligible for.

Take into account developing a bank account that instantly debits from the salary each month. One of several toughest areas of protecting gets in to the practice of protecting and having it taken out quickly, eliminates this step. Also, automatically refilling your bank account signifies that it won’t be depleted if you do must drop involved with it for any sort of crisis situations, especially if it’s more often than once.

As opposed to going to a vehicle car dealership and putting your signature on a rent for any new automobile, check out each of the employed cars within the lot. Sometimes it is safer to invest in a used car, because you will pay a far lower price and have resale benefit ultimately.

If you want to keep your credit history as much as possible, you need to have among two and a number of a credit card in active use. Experiencing no less than two greeting cards can help you establish a crystal clear repayment background, and in case you’ve been having to pay them away it improves your score. Keeping over several charge cards at a time, nevertheless, makes it seem like you’re trying to bring too much debt, and hurts your score.

If someone has a desire for animals or already has a lot of pets, they are able to transform that interest in a method to obtain personal budget. By doing demonstrations at celebrations, educational demonstrations, as well as supplying organized tours at one’s residence can develop monetary good things about health supplement the costs of the pets and more.

Decrease your complete month to month food expenses by nixing the habit of smoking of shopping for foods daily, after you depart job or institution. This process causes you to far more prone to high priced impulse transactions and take out operates. Rather, prepare your shopping transactions to have an overall week at any given time. Preserve more dollars by shopping only once every other 7 days.

Broward County Convention Center chosen for Marketing Mastery 2014 Conference

Fort Lauderdale, FL –Christina Rowe, President of Stand Out! Media Group and Heidi Richards Mooney, Founder of Women in Ecommerce™ are pleased to announce the Greater Fort Lauderdale / Broward County Convention Center in Fort Lauderdale as our Venue for the first-annual Day with the Masters Marketing Mastery 2014 Conference taking place on Friday, April 25, 2014.

About the Day with the Masters: Marketing Mastery 2014 Conference: Attending events is an excellent way to grow your business. Besides the content rich programs, top notch speakers and new business strategies, the event provides attendees will an excellent way to network and meet like-minded professionals. The Day with the Masters Marketing Mastery 2014 Conference is designed to for professionals and business owners who want to immerse themselves in knowledge and expertise as our six marketing masters share their cutting-edge techniques and strategies to transform your business today. General admission tickets are only $97 and include lunch. Limited VIP tickets are available and include premium seating, a private lunch with the speakers and other “perks.”

According to Heidi Richards Mooney, Event Co-Producer Chair, “The Greater Fort Lauderdale Broward County Convention Center was chosen because it represents our community in a professional way and the staff are a pleasure to work with. When people hear the name of the location, it gives the feeling of something larger than them, which fits perfectly with our theme, A Day with The Masters. We want people to walk away from our event feeling important, empowered and enlightened. The Convention Center will help us achieve our vision.”

Christina Rowe, event Co-Producer says: “Every event I have attended at the The Greater Fort Lauderdale Broward County Convention Center was first-class. The staff are professional, courteous and attentive to even the smallest details. We know they can handle an event of any size and will give us the attention we require and our guests expect.

About Greater Fort Lauderdale / Broward County Convention Center in Fort Lauderdale: The Greater Ft. Lauderdale / Broward County Convention Center is the country’s premiere waterfront conference facility. The building is a five-minute drive from the airport, within walking distance of many local hotels, and less than one mile from Fort Lauderdale’s famed Blue Wave beaches. Hosting more than 5 million guests and 5,500 meetings since opening its doors in 1991, the Convention Center consistently exceeds guest and meeting planner expectations for five-star food service, state-of the-art technology, and outstanding service in a modern, eco-friendly facility. For more information about the Convention Center call 954.765.5900 or visit

About Stand Out! Media Group: Stand Out! Media Group creates your brand online and offline–from your website, Facebook page and profile, social media backgrounds to your promotional materials, marketing, publicity, videos and more. By building a streamlined, recognizable brand online, you will quickly develop a powerful web presence that attracts clients and generates new business. With Stand Out! strategic branding, you can become a well-known expert and leader in your field and dominate the search engines, giving you the edge over your competitors.

About Women in Ecommerce: For more than twelve years, Women in Ecommerce™ has been helping women do business on the web by providing educational events, seminars, webinars, conferences and teleclasses via our website and social media platforms. We have a diverse membership of women from all walks of life representing 54 countries worldwide. Our members are professionals, educators, retailers, retail businesses, work-at-home moms, direct sales representatives, affiliate marketers, online sales professionals, auction site sellers and resellers, web designers, and other technology experts.

For more information about the Day With The Masters Marketing Mastery 2014 Conference, visit For more information about Stand Out! Media Group visit: and for more information about Women in Ecommerce™ visit today! To participate in or learn more about the event, contact Christina Rowe at 732.501.6445, email her at [email protected] or contact Heidi Richards Mooney, at 954.625.6606 or email her at [email protected]

Discontinued Betty Crocker Rainbow Chip frosting – $25 per can on Amazon

Betty Crocker Rainbow Chip Frosting was discontinued in late 2013, much to the disappointment of many loyal fans. The canned frosting is basically vanilla icing with small bits of colored candies mixed in. It has been a favorite in many households for decades for birthdays, Mother’s Day, Easter, or just because. Now Rainbow Chip Frosting has gone the way of many grocery products and is no longer available.

Fans of the frosting have even started several Facebook pages to voice their discontent and get the attention of the folks at Betty Crocker. On one page, “Bring Back Rainbow Chip Frosting,” members post screen shots of correspondence with Betty Crocker about bringing back the product. On March 9, a member named Tasha received this reply from Betty Crocker:

“Hi, Tasha, We’re so sorry to disappoint. Unfortunately, we discontinued the Rainbow Chip because just not enough people were buying it. We have been overwhelmed by the response from Rainbow Chip fans and are considering our options. Please stay tuned.”

So not really a promise to bring it back, but at least Betty Crocker is hearing its fans. If you are lucky, you might find some Rainbow Chip hiding in closeout stores like Big Lots or smaller, lesser known grocery stores in rural areas. But watch expiration dates. The frosting may have been sitting on the shelf for a while and could be out of date. Big Lots is famous for selling grocery items that are past their best buy date.

Then there is Amazon, where customers can find just about anything discontinued for a price. Currently there are 4 different listings for Rainbow Chip in different offers:

One 16 ounce container. There are 6 offers by different sellers. Prices range from $19.99 plush $5.49 shipping to $449.95. (The last offer is eligible for Prime and is probably a stock-out and the seller is just leaving the listing active.)

Three 16 ounce containers. Cost is $93.97 plus $4.49 shipping and is not Prime eligible.

Four 16 ounce containers. Cost is $49.99 and is not eligible for Prime.

Seven 16 ounce containers. Cost is $21.19 plus $26.30 shipping. It is not Prime eligible.

The best bet for sellers is the first offer of one 16 ounce can. The sales rank is the best of all choices at 14,996. The second offer of four cans is the next best offer, however, this means the seller needs to come up with four cans to make the multipack and that may be difficult since this product is nearly impossible to find.

As for buyers, enjoy eating some expensive frosting.