Don't sweat the low volatility in this market

There's been a lot of talk about how low volatility is in the market right now but I suspect this will be the norm for a while — and that's not such a bad thing.

The CBOE volatility index, a measure to implied volatility in the S&P 500 options market, and thus a proxy for overall stock market volatility (debatable), has seen extended periods of peace in the mid-1990s and, again, from 2003-2007.

The gloom and doomers warn of a volatility spike following extended periods of peace and quiet. But in the past, the results of low volatility were not always immediately catastrophic.

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The modern VIX has been in use since 1990; before that, the volatility gauge was known as the VXO.

Fredrik Telleus | Mascot | Getty Images

The VIX spiked above 80 during the 2008 crisis and is currently around 12.

During the "Crash of '87," the VXO spiked to a reading of over 170! However, many market experts suggest the volatility over that two-day period in which the market fell 508 points the first day and another 200 points the following morning before rebounding and ending 300 points higher on "Turnaround Tuesday," was, in fact, immeasurable.

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We have just entered a period of reduced volatility in 2014. Just because the VIX is low, it does not automatically follow that it will instantly turn higher. A review of even the most cursory historical charts will show that.

Individual stock-market volatility has been higher than the market itself, leaving plenty of opportunities to trade stocks, as opposed to trading the "market."

For individual investors, a low-volatility environment could be the trigger to draw them back into stocks, using a buy-and-hold strategy.

The traders have had their fun after five years as the S&P 500 index has nearly tripled.

It's time to give the little guy a chance to re-enter the market and take advantage of the stability that has been absent for so long.

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Some call it the "new neutral." I would call it the old normal. To go back even farther in time, there was a day where the stock market was a boring place that allowed companies to raise capital and for investors to make sound long-term decisions based on the fundamental prospects of the economy and individual companies.

I have spoken, at length, about a manufacturing renaissance in the U.S. Maybe it's time for an investor renaissance as well, where patience, and the long view are rewarded once again …. at least for a reasonable period into the future.

Commentary by Ron Insana, a CNBC and MSNBC contributor and the author of four books on Wall Street. He also delivers a daily podcast, "Insana Insights," and a long-form weekly version, both available on iTunes and at Follow him on Twitter @rinsana.