VIX All-Time Low

VIX All-Time Lowest Close

All-time lowest VIX close was 9.31 on 22 December 1993.

So far there have been only 9 trading days when VIX closed below 10.

(Available VIX data history goes back to January 1990)

VIX All-Time Intraday Low

All-time lowest VIX intraday value was 8.89 reached on 27 December 1993.

This was the only day in history when the VIX was trading below 9.

There have been 18 trading days in history when the VIX was trading below 10 intraday.

10 Lowest VIX Closing Values in History

The following table shows 10 days with lowest VIX closing values:

Rank Date Open High Low Close
1 22 December 1993 10.03 10.03 9.28 9.31
2 23 December 1993 9.50 9.55 9.17 9.48
3 27 December 1993 9.50 9.79 8.89 9.70
4 28 December 1993 9.81 9.96 9.70 9.82
5 24 January 2007 10.41 10.41 9.87 9.89
6 21 November 2006 10.05 10.06 9.84 9.90
7 28 January 1994 9.86 10.31 9.59 9.94
8 20 November 2006 10.42 10.48 9.91 9.97
9 14 December 2006 10.74 10.75 9.64 9.97
10 16 February 2007 10.42 10.44 9.98 10.02

You can see that all of them occurred either in December 2003 – January 2004 or in November 2006 – February 2007. These two periods have been the long-term lows in VIX, as you can see in the chart below:

VIX long term chart (1990-2013, closing values only)

It also appears that the VIX is now heading to another big long-term low, but of course noone can tell what the lowest value will be this time. You can also see that the periods of very low VIX can be very long (several years) and the mere fact that the VIX is 10, 11, or 12 does not necessarily mean that it must go up soon.

VXO (Old VIX) All-Time Low

Data for the VIX index is available starting from 1990, but big part of that was back-calculated, because the current VIX calculation method is used only since 22 September 2003. Data for the old method is still being published by CBOE under the symbol VXO. It goes back to 1986 and therefore provides a few additional years of history. You can see VXO chart below:

VXO long term chart (1986-2013, closing values only)

VXO all-time lowest close was 9.04 on 23 December 1993 (the same day as VIX all-time low).

VXO all-time intraday low was 8.86 again on 23 December 1993.

There have been 42 trading days when VXO closed below 10, 3 trading days when VXO was below 9 intraday, and 64 trading days when VXO was trading below 10 intraday. These numbers are higher than the corresponding VIX numbers, but the reason is not the longer VXO history (you can see in the chart above that the first VXO history years saw much higher values, including the super-spike on the Black Monday in 1987). The reason for higher number of extremely low values in VXO vs. VIX is simply different calculation of the two indices.

Here you can see the differences in VIX vs. VXO calculation (“New vs. Old VIX Calculation” – almost at the end of the page).

Here you can see similar statistics for VIX and VXO all-time highs.