Calm has returned to markets after several unnerving weeks. The “fear index” has dropped to a calm reading after spiking to its highest reading since 2011.  Lessons were learned.  The consumer is unshaken.

Panic Defused in Stocks with Sharpest VIX Drop Since 2009.  The panic has subsided.  The Chicago Board of Options Exchange (CBOE) Volatility Index (VIX), often called the fear index, eased down to a calm reading.  The index had peaked at 36.06 last Wednesday, its highest reading since November 29, 2011.  The VIX should be viewed as an important piece of market information for investors.  It is forward-looking, in that it measures volatility that investors expect to see.

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El-Erian:  4 Things to Remember after Wild Market Week.  Many investors will remember market gyrations of the last few weeks.  Here are four noteworthy lessons to be drawn from the last few market sessions by Mohammed El-Erian.

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Consumer Sentiment at Highest Level Since July, 2007.  The Preliminary University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment for October came in.  The general trend in the Index since the Financial Crisis lows has been one of slow improvement.  But we now are at a post-recession high.

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