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ETF Scorecard: December 1 Edition

To help investors keep up with the markets, we present our ETF Scorecard. The Scorecard takes a step back and looks at how various asset classes across the globe are performing. The weekly performance is from last Friday’s open to this week’s Thursday close.

OPEC and Russia reportedly agreed to extend the oil supply cut deal until the end of 2018. However, both sides took the liberty to exit the agreement in case the market is overheating. The accord will be revised in June. Nigeria and Libya agreed not to increase their output above the 2017 levels; previously, they were exempt from the deal. New home sales point to a strong consumer sentiment in the U.S., surging above estimates for the second consecutive month. In October, new home sales increased to an annualized rate of 685,000, crushing estimates of 620,000. On the downside, the figure for the prior month was revised down from 667,000 to 625,000. Bank of England’s stress tests revealed that U.K. banks were strong enough to withstand a disorderly Brexit. The news strengthened a beaten-up pound. U.S. consumer confidence rose to 129.5 in November, reaching a 17-year high and beating estimates of just 124.5. In the prior month, the index stood at 125.9. U.S. GDP grew by 3.3% in the third quarter, in line with consensus estimates. The growth represents an acceleration compared to the second quarter, when the U.S. economy advanced by 3%. Crude oil inventories continued to fall in the November 24 week by 3.4 million barrels. In the previous week, stockpiles fell by 1.9 million barrels. Pending home sales were also strong in October, soaring by 3.5% month-over-month. Amid a host of upbeat data all over the world, European inflation has disappointed. Eurozone’s CPI grew by only 1.5% in November on a year-over-year basis. This was below analysts’ estimates of 1.6%. Core CPI came in at just 0.9% on a year-over-year basis. U.S. unemployment claims pointed to a strong labor market with a reading of 238,000 for the week ended November 25. This represents a slight fall of 2,000 compared to the previous week.

Risk Appetite Review

The markets were again on a tear this week. Equal Weight (RSP B+) was the best performer from the bunch, surging 2.21%. The S&P 500 (SPY A) also posted solid gains, advancing 1.80%. Sign up for ETFdb.com Pro and get access to real-time ratings on over 1,900 U.S.-listed ETFs.  

Major Index Review

Global markets were up, with notable exceptions. The Dow Jones (DIA A-) was surprisingly the best performer both for the week and the rolling month, gaining 3.09% and 3.94%, respectively. Emerging markets (EEM A-), meanwhile, fell the most, with falling oil prices weighing negatively on Brazil and Russia, and China experiencing a sell-off. (EEM A-) dropped 3.27% in the week through Thursday, with the steep fall impacting the monthly gains. (EEM A-) is the only faller for the rolling month, down 0.07%. To see how these indices performed last week, check out ETF Scorecard: November 24 Edition.  

Sectors Review

The financial sector (XLF A) soared 4.52% this week, as investors dumped overvalued technology shares and piled into banking stocks. The move was largely triggered by the revelation that financial companies will benefit more from an impending tax cut than tech companies, given banks have a much higher effective tax rate. The technology sector (XLK A), meanwhile, fell 0.62% during the week, as investors took some profits off the table. Consumer staples (XLP A) is the surprise winner for the rolling month, with an advance of 5.93%.  

Foreign Equity Review

Foreign equities were almost all down. The U.K. stock market (EWU A-) was the best performer for the week, advancing tepidly by 0.14%. Britain dodged a global sell-off largely because Bank of England said the nation’s banks were well-positioned to withstand a disorderly Brexit after conducting stress tests. Brazil (EWZ B+) is the worst weekly performer with a decline of 4.77% on worries that President Michel Temer may not get enough votes to pass a plan to reform the social security system, a move crucial for the country’s long-term economic health. (EWZ B+) is also the worst performer for the rolling month, falling 3.47%. Japan (EWJ A) is the best performer for the rolling month, up 2.43%. To find out more about ETFs exposed to particular countries, check our ETF Country Exposure tool. Select a particular country from a world map and get a list of all ETFs tracking your pick.  

Commodities Review

Commodities were mixed. Natural gas (UNG B-) was the only gainer from the commodity pack, edging up 1.34%. Silver (SLV C+) and copper (JJC A) are sharing the last position in terms of weekly performance, both down 3.66%. Silver is also the worst performer for the rolling month with a decline of nearly 2%. Oil (USO A) remains the best performer for the rolling month with a rise of 5.71%. This week, however, the black commodity fell 2.30%, despite OPEC and Russia reaching an agreement to cut supply. Use our Head-to-Head Comparison tool to compare two ETFs such as (USO A) and (UNG B-) on a variety of criteria such as performance, AUM, trading volume and expenses.  

Currency Review

The British pound (FXB A-) was on a tear this week, rising 1.33%, after Bank of England published a positive assessment of its health. The Japanese yen (FXY C+) gave up some of the gains this week, dropping 1.50%, after a long winning streak. The U.S. dollar (UUP A) remains the worst performer for the rolling month, down 1.67%, while the Euro (FXE A) rose the most, up 2.18%.  

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