Over the past 3 months, VIX has been relatively low. Therefore, there seems to be a "free-lunch" here by just being long VIX, and wait for the next market turmoil (which is happening at the moment with the US-China trade war).
Of course I know that such an obvious free-lunch is not possible in the market, due to some constraints I am certainly missing.
I was told by a trader that it comes from the carry costs you have to pay for being long VIX. I am not really familiar with this carry cost notion for futures here, so it does not really help my understanding.
Besides, there is a VIX ETF (VXX) that I could just have bought and hold until today, and make a 20% return from April till now.
Can someone therefore explain:
How carry costs work for VIX Futures?
If carry costs apply to VIX ETF, where in the case they don't apply, there should be something else I am missing otherwise I would just be long the ETF.