So, this might look like gambling, but I recently read about a get-rich-quick scheme: trading SVXY or XIV or ZIV or whatever ETF/ETN there is that shorts the VIX futures in some way, buying whenever the VIX spikes to some high number (e.g. 25+) and selling after x% profit is achieved, rinse and repeat.
Now, I saw a big problem: Google Finance reported that XIV went from $190 to $5 in 2011. Was that true? On both Yahoo Finance and Nasdaq, they claimed that it went from $19 to $5. Which should I believe?
Of course, even $19 to $5 is bad, so I won't buy if VIX is (1) going up and (2) in backwardation--as buying while the crash is happening is the quickest way for me to wipe out my portfolio.