Equities made their biggest one-day gain today since the Fed announced QE3 last month. Fueling the rally was better-than-expected earnings reports from bellwethers Johnson & Johnson and Goldman Sachs. Helping drive markets higher was a rather cheery report from the housing and industrial sector; the National Association of Home Builders reported that confidence of home builders rose this month to the highest level since June of 2006, while another report showed that industrial output rose last month at a higher-than-expected pace. Overall, investors have been sighing in relief as this quarter’s earnings season has for the most part been better-than-expected [see also ETF Insider: Support Levels In Sight].
Global Market Overview: Cautious Fed Is Ready To Take Action
U.S. equities finished near session highs today, with the Tech-heavy Nasdaq (QQQ) coming out on top with its 1.21% gain. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DIA) and S&P 500 (SPY) also ended well into positive territory, surging 0.95% and 1.03% higher, respectively. As Spain appeared to be closer to formally requesting for bailout funds and Germany’s ZEW sentiment indicator showed a rise in economic sentiment, European markets rallied with the Stoxx Europe 600 gaining 1.3% and Spain’s IBEX 35 Index jumping 3.4%. In Asia, equities were mostly higher; Japan’s Nikkei Stock Average rose 1.4%, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index inched 0.3% higher.
Bond ETF Roundup
After seven days of rising prices, Treasuries finally pulled back today after reports indicated that Spain is closer to asking for bailout funds. Stronger corporate earnings from financial powerhouses, like Goldman Sachs, also encouraged investors to shed their safe haven investments in lieu of riskier assets.
Commodity ETF Roundup
Cocoa futures made headlines today, as the sweet commodity surged 3% after positive signs for the U.S. economy led many to believe that consumers may splurge on chocolate in the near future. Among today’s other gainers were corn, soybean, gold, silver, and platinum.
ETF Chart Of The Day #1: IYG
The iShares Dow Jones U.S. Financial Services Index Fund (IYG) had one of its most active days today, as news of Citigroup’s CEO Vikram Pandit resignation hit the market and Goldman Sachs delivering a better-than-expected earnings report helped set this ETF into motion. At the opening bell, IYG’s trading volumes popped to nearly 10,000 shares, leading IYG to advance on heavy volume. The fund proceeded to slide sideways for the rest of the day, eventually settling at $57.52 a share [see also Citigroup Rally Lifts Financial ETFs].
ETF Chart Of The Day #2: EWP
The iShares MSCI Spain Index Fund (EWP) was one of the best performers today, gaining a whopping 4.08% during the session. After reports indicated that Spain is closer to formally requesting financial aid, this ETF gapped significantly higher at the open, and continued to inch higher throughout the day. EWP eventually settled below its high of $29.14 a share [see Free 7 Simple & Cheap ETF Portfolios].
ETF Fun Fact Of The Day
There are fourteen ETFs that currently offer exposure to Citigroup Inc (C) stock. It receives the highest weightings in the Financial Sector Fund (RWW) and the KBW Bank Portfolio (KBWB) at 7.55% and 6.99%, respectively.
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