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Panic Defused in Stocks With Sharpest VIX Drop Since 2009

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The panic has subsided.

Four consecutive advances in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index have pushed the gauge up 4.2 percent since Oct. 15, recouping half the losses from a selloff that began in mid-September. After surging to a 28-month high last week, the Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index has fallen at least a point a day starting Oct. 16, reflecting a dissipation of investor concern that hasn’t occurred in five years.