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Stocks could correct—how to buy protection: Technician

It's been a wild month for volatility.

The CBOE Volatility Index has bounced between year highs and year lows in July. But as the market continues to trade in a tight range, and the popular fear gauge has dropped once again to near historical lows, some traders think now might be the perfect time to buy some protection.

"We're setting up for a bull market correction," technical analyst Ari Wald said Tuesday on CNBC's "Trading Nation."

For Wald, a combination of seasonal weakness and market participation could prove rocky for stocks in the coming months. "The advance decline line, an indication of the breadth of the market, has been making lower highs and is actually at one of its lowest levels of the year," he added. "We're also in this very weak seasonal period of the year."

Wald sees the S&P 500 declining to the 1,970 level before resuming its long-term advance, and with the VIX still reading around a relatively low level, he sees "a pretty attractive buying opportunity" to play for a hedge against stocks. The S&P closed at 2,093 on Tuesday, up 1.2 percent for the day.


But as the VIX tends to see massive swings higher and lower, buying it outright could prove dangerous, according to options expert Andrew Keene.

"I don't want to outright get long the VIX because I think [in the long run] the market can move higher and the VIX could move lower," said the founder of Keene on the Market.

Instead, for those worried about a stock market correction, Keene recommended buying VIX call options as a means for protection.

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Brian Sullivan is co-anchor of CNBC's "Power Lunch" (M-F,1PM-3PM ET), one of the network's longest running programs, as well as the host of the daily investing program "Trading Nation." He is also a frequent guest on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" and other NBC properties.

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