Barclays iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN
The Barclays iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN, known by the ticker VXX, is designed to provide investors with exposure to the S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures Index Total Return. The index is designed to provide access to equity market volatility through CBOE Volatility Index futures. Specifically, the S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures Index offers exposure to a daily rolling long position in the first and second month VIX futures contracts and reflects the implied volatility of the S&P 500 Index at various points along the volatility forward curve. The index futures roll continuously throughout each month from the first month VIX futures contract into the second month VIX futures contract.
The $700m exchange-traded VXX was the first of its kind when it launched in January 2009. It buys futures contracts on the VIX volatility index.
Since it is not possible to invest directly in the VIX Index, the VIX ETN and similar products are designed to provide access to US equity market volatility.