ETF Insider: Dismal Quarter Ends On Upbeat Note

Michael Johnston

A brutal quarter in the financial markets came to a close with a pop, rewarding investors who stuck with their risky asset allocations as stocks plummeted and no doubt frustrating those who recently made a move to safe havens. Not surprisingly, Europe was once again the catalyst for Friday’s rally, as investors cheered a rare event from the continent: an agreement that was generally considered to be a step in the right direction. But Friday’s summit outcome wasn’t enough to erase the woes of the second quarter completely, as many account statements will be drenched in red [see also How To Pick The Right ETF Every Time].

While the past week was very eventful on Wall Street, it was relatively slow in the ETF industry. New product activity will likely remain limited until after the July 4th holiday, and it’s likely that we’ll see very low trading volumes next week as well.

Actionable ETF Trade Ideas

Last Week’s Actionable ETF Ideas
Ticker Position Week Performance







Our picks from Monday’s Insider generally fared well in the “risk on” environment this week, with two of them getting nice boosts from Friday’s rally. Below, we highlight how our trade ideas fared during the week [sign up for a free trial of ETFdb Pro to get actionable ETF ideas every Monday, as well as access to more than 45 all-ETF model portfolios].

Trade #1 Long BTAL: Down 1.5%

This recommendation had a strong start to its week as prices hovered above $24 for the majority of the week. Coming into Friday, this ETF looked as if it would finish the week positively. Equity investors found new fuel following the 2-day euro summit which caused a surge in the stock market throughout much of Friday. This left BTAL at a 1-week low, leaving us with a  1.5% loss on the week.

We continue to like BTAL as a hedge in anticipation of weak and/or chaotic equity markets; this ETF has proven itself as a useful tool for smoothing out volatility and capturing spreads between risky and stable stocks.

Trade #2 Long WOOD: Up 3.6%

WOOD started the week in a bit of a slump sitting below $36 until Wednesday when the ETF saw a bit of a jump. It wasn’t until Friday’s positive market that this ETF was able to surpass its opening on Monday and end the week on a one-week high. With the homebuilding market continuing to show signs of life this past week, WOOD remains an intriguing opportunity going forward. This ETF surged higher to close out the week on a positive note, leaving us with a hefty 3.6% gain on the week.

Trade #3 Long DXJ : Up 3.5%

This recommendation got off to a weak start as investors held out for data to be released on Thursday regarding Japan’s economic condition. When the unemployment rate came in better than expected, DXJ got a nice boose. Unlike our other two recommendations, this ETF surpassed its weekly high on Thursday and continued its upward trend during Friday’s bull market. This recommendation depended on Thursday’s news and performed quite nicely following the reports, returning a solid 3.5 % gain  on the week.

ETFdb Portfolios

Retirement ETFdb Portfolios

Our Low Volatility ETFdb Portfolio managed to finish with a positive trailing 13 week return, an impressive accomplishment for an equity intensive allocation during such a tough environment. That highlights the tremendous demand for low volatility stocks in the current market, and the potentially powerful impact of minimizing ups and downs over the long haul.

ETFdb Portfolio 1 Week 4 Week 13 Week YTD 1 Year 3 Year 5 Year
5 Years Til Retirement Portfolio 2.59% 4.05% -1.70% 5.42% 2.37% n/a n/a
30 Years Til Retirement Portfolio 3.54% 6.82% -3.66% 7.71% -1.42% 54.85% n/a
Aggressive Portfolio 3.70% 6.90% -4.78% 6.16% -5.46% n/a n/a
Cheapskate Portfolio 2.61% 5.32% -2.76% 5.41% -0.80% n/a n/a
Low Volatility Portfolio 1.97% 4.13% 0.72% 4.89% n/a n/a n/a
Moderate Portfolio 2.81% 4.80% -1.80% 5.89% 1.31% n/a n/a
Africa-Centric ETFdb Portfolio mounted an impressive rally during the past week. It’s also worth noting that our Ex-Europe ETFdb Portfolio has performed relatively well during the past 13 weeks, highlighting the struggles across the pond.
ETFdb Portfolio 1 Week 4 Week 13 Week YTD 1 Year 3 Year 5 Year
Africa-Centric Portfolio 4.65% 4.83% -4.76% 9.12% -10.04% n/a n/a
Asia-Centric ETFdb Portfolio 3.48% 6.22% -4.19% 5.94% -9.63% n/a n/a
BRIC-or-Bust ETFdb Portfolio 4.37% 4.78% -10.28% 0.89% -22.86% n/a n/a
Easy-As-ABC ETFdb Portfolio 4.37% 4.71% -9.75% 0.57% -16.27% n/a n/a
Emerging & Frontier Markets ETFdb Portfolio 3.11% 6.08% -4.63% 7.49% -8.84% n/a n/a
Euro Free Europe Portfolio 5.15% 9.00% -8.03% 3.40% -13.87% n/a n/a
Ex-Europe ETFdb Portfolio 2.25% 4.66% -2.26% 5.60% 0.75% 39.78% n/a
Ex-U.S. Portfolio 2.42% 6.15% -4.89% 4.60% -10.79% 22.23% n/a
Global Titans ETFdb Portfolio 3.05% 5.46% -4.29% 6.22% n/a n/a n/a
LatAm Centric ETFdb Portfolio 3.89% 5.12% -9.97% 2.06% -15.25% n/a n/a

As Of 07-02-2012

Themed ETFdb Portfolios

Our Monthly Dividend ETFdb Portfolio, a new addition to the lineup, enjoyed a relatively good quarter by posting a positive return. That highlights the interest in dividend-paying stocks and high yielding bonds in the current environment.

ETFdb Portfolio 1 Week 4 Week 13 Week YTD 1 Year 3 Year 5 Year
2012 ETFdb Portfolio 3.44% 7.68% -5.34% 6.95% n/a n/a n/a
Actively-Managed ETF Portfolio 2.45% 5.08% 0.61% 7.72% 1.17% n/a n/a
AlphaDEX ETFdb Portfolio 4.17% 6.48% -5.38% 3.97% -7.64% n/a n/a
Alpha Seeker Portfolio 2.0 2.52% 4.85% -3.96% 4.97% -3.59% n/a n/a
Baby Boomers ETFdb Portfolio 3.34% 8.83% -0.26% 11.53% 4.23% n/a n/a
Ben Graham 50/50 Portfolio 2.02% 2.36% -1.26% 3.96% n/a n/a n/a
Better-Than-AGG Total Bond Market ETFdb Portfolio 0.50% 1.11% 1.12% 2.66% 5.37% n/a n/a
Black Swan Hyperinflation Portfolio 3.03% 2.06% -8.52% -2.66% -9.71% n/a n/a
Commodity Guru ETFdb Portfolio 3.98% 5.76% -6.53% 1.68% -10.89% n/a n/a
Cheapskate Hedge Fund ETFdb Portfolio -0.23% -0.50% -3.65% -3.14% n/a n/a n/a
Energy Bull ETFdb Portfolio 5.91% 7.26% -10.28% -4.71% -13.49% n/a n/a
Equal Weight ETFdb Portfolio 3.30% 5.15% -2.68% 4.92% -1.77% n/a n/a
Financials Free ETFdb Portfolio 3.18% 5.58% -1.66% 2.87% 0.36% 43.87% n/a
Futures Free Commodity ETFdb Portfolio 3.63% 5.87% -8.91% 0.77% -20.92% n/a n/a
GLD-Free Gold Bug ETFdb Portfolio 0.35% -3.13% -10.76% -6.16% -8.51% n/a n/a
Greedy When Others Are Fearful ETFdb Portfolio 2.35% 4.08% -4.84% 5.18% n/a n/a n/a
High-Tax Bracket ETF Portfolio 2.03% 3.71% -3.90% 5.72% -1.72% 35.91% n/a
High Tech ETFdb Portfolio 2.78% 6.68% -7.17% 8.94% n/a n/a n/a
High Yield ETFdb Portfolio 3.33% 5.75% 0.49% 6.85% 6.20% 55.73% n/a
King Dollar ETFdb Portfolio 2.45% 3.76% -0.29% 4.72% 4.43% n/a n/a
Kitchen Sink ETFdb Portfolio 2.75% 5.88% -2.67% 5.55% -2.22% n/a n/a
Monthly Dividend ETFdb Portfolio 2.22% 4.79% 0.33% 6.26% 4.82% n/a n/a
Pure Growth ETFdb Portfolio 3.32% 6.14% -3.80% n/a n/a n/a n/a
Pure Value ETFdb Portfolio 3.47% 6.70% n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a
RAFI ETFdb Portfolio 5.73% 8.86% -7.50% 4.98% -10.88% 42.01% n/a
Simple (But Effective) Safe Haven ETFdb Portfolio 2.65% 4.16% -0.89% 3.62% 3.45% 47.26% 37.09%
Small Cap ETFdb Portfolio 4.11% 7.62% -2.34% 9.46% -3.49% n/a n/a
The Sky Is Falling Portfolio 0.96% -1.48% -2.60% -3.85% -0.74% n/a n/a
Socially Responsible ETFdb Portfolio 2.28% 3.47% -3.92% 3.60% -1.39% n/a n/a

As Of 07-02-2012

New ETF Highlights

As this month comes to a close, the ETF world saw one new fund hit the street this past week. Check out our ETF Launch Center for complete updates on all new ETFs.

ETF Launches

Sector Dividend Dogs ETF (SDOG)

  • Launch:  June 29th
  • ETFdb Category:  Large Cap Value Equities
  • Structure: ETF
  • Expense Ratio:  0.40%

ALPS brought to market an ETF designed to measure the performance of US large cap equities with above average dividend yields. The fund maintains equal allocations to each of ten sectors, ensuring that it stays well diversified and unbiased. This ETF will undoubtedly be a useful tool in portfolios seeking to capture a meaningful dividend yield.

Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.

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