Natural disasters, the European debt crisis and social and political upheaval in the Middle East have created recent market volatility and contributed to an ongoing sense of uncertainty.

With the credit crisis and ensuing market correction of 2008 still fresh in the minds of investors, the focus of many has been on capital preservation. The derivatives market is indicative of this prevailing mindset, showing that investors are currently spending 12 times more money to protect against a downturn in stocks than to capture the upside from a potential rally.

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