VGT - Vanguard Information Technology Index Fund ETF Shares

NYSEArca - NYSEArca Delayed Price. Currency in USD
198.27
-3.67 (-1.82%)
At close: 4:00PM EDT

199.01 +0.74 (0.37%)
After hours: 4:46PM EDT

Stock chart is not supported by your current browser
Previous Close201.94
Open199.39
Bid196.96 x 1000
Ask198.58 x 1000
Day's Range196.96 - 199.51
52 Week Range154.72 - 215.77
Volume786,670
Avg. Volume663,862
Net Assets23.48B
NAV200.51
PE Ratio (TTM)N/A
Yield1.11%
YTD Return22.08%
Beta (3Y Monthly)1.12
Expense Ratio (net)0.10%
Inception Date2004-01-26
Trade prices are not sourced from all markets
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And with easy money with interest rates still not far from post-crisis levels, the credit market supports a buoyant stock market.Moving it forward is the concept of Modern Monetary Theory or MMT. This is a spin on an old theory attributed to many, including German economist George Knapp. And in very brief summary, MMT holds that the government that issues fiat money can do so largely at will and can control inflation via taxes or bond issuance. This way, government can spend at nearly at will.Of course, this works until it doesn't, when money isn't recognized, and no one will buy government bonds except the central bank.But it is being rolled out as a politically pleasing means of not only keeping the FOMC's bond portfolio, but potentially for having even larger government budgetary spending for all sorts of things.Next up is the bond market. The U.S. 10-year Treasury is sitting near 2.59% and remains well bought in the market. This, in turn, is aiding the market for mortgages, which lenders and traders use as benchmarks for modeling prices and yields. So, mortgage rates should remain low, providing further economic stimulus as well as consumer confidence all good for stocks.And it isn't just because of the FOMC. Demand by bond buyers, from wealthy investors to insurance companies and pension funds, remains strong. And given the demographics of the U.S. market aging further, that demand should keep a lid on yields for a while.And in turn, with lower Treasury yields, the corporate and other bonds, including municipal bonds, look even more attractive for the same bond investors -- all helping the economy and the general stock market.And last up is the U.S. dollar. The dollar, as measured by the Bloomberg US dollar Index, which tracks a basket of 10 major currencies, is up nearly 7% over the past year. That makes the U.S. a prime destination for global investment.This shows up in U.S. Treasury tracking of foreign government and private inflows of capital that are buying U.S. stocks and bonds. And while there were some outflows in the downturn in the fourth quarter for U.S. stocks, overall, the net amount of foreign investment in the U.S. is vastly higher in the most recent data than were it was back in 2016.And all of this comes as the underlying themes that I've been writing about recently about consumer comfort and business confidence to invest in long-term capital spending remain intact. The Big WorryNow, where will the cracks show up?I think that the biggest risk for the U.S. stock market is the reality of company performance. One of the reasons for the selloff in the fourth quarter last year was the fear that sales growth and, more importantly, earnings growth would slow from the stellar numbers of last year into 2019.For the fourth calendar quarter of 2018, the members of the S&P 500 Index reported sales growth, on average, about 6% and earnings growth around 12%. But what may be coming for the coming quarters looks a lot slower. And so far, as earnings for the first calendar quarter are rolling in, it has been a mixed bag with more risks on the horizon in the coming weeks. Tech Stocks -- Stocks to Buy, or Topping Out?This is particularly threatening for the information technology sector. This segment of the S&P 500 Index has been a big driver of the performance of the index this year, and is one of the more highly valued. Any disappointments in the earnings from the first calendar quarter of this year will most likely have a negative impact on the overall index -- and the market.So, while many companies turned in some nice numbers from the fourth quarter, the risk is that as more folks take a look at the expectations for slowed growth in sales and earnings, the compelling case to buy fades and selling comes back.Source: BloombergAnd at the core of the risk sector would be the information technology stocks, particularly found in exchange-traded funds (ETFs) such as Vanguard's Information Technology ETF (NYSEARCA:VGT). This ETF has soared, with a price gain alone from Dec. 24, 2018 to date of over 35%. It is the underlying, synthetically represented stocks that have the greatest risk for earnings disappointment.This is why I continue to recommend plenty of safer, more income-focused investments and defensive investments in the model portfolios of my Profitable Investing.But that said, I do believe that even in some downturns for the general market that there are plenty of stocks in industries that worked in tougher times and will work going forward. But above all else -- keep your focus on the dividend and income paying investments right now.Source: BloombergIn particular, look at a few key segments stating with real estate investment trusts (REITs). REITs have been one of the stellar performing sectors but still remains a value. The Bloomberg US REITs Index has generated a trailing year's return of 19% and was one of the better-performing indexes, losing less during the broad U.S. stock selloff in the fourth quarter of 2018 than many peers. One of the easiest means for synthetic exposure is in the Vanguard Real Estate ETF (NYSEARCA:VNQ).Source: BloombergNext is the utilities market sector. Again, like with REITs, utilities provide defense with better yield and the added benefit of having both regulated and unregulated businesses. The S&P 500 Utilities Index has a trailing year's return of 19% and was again a better performer during the selloff late last year. The go-to ETF for exposure can be found in the Vanguard Utilities ETF (NYSEARCA:VPU).Source: BloombergAnd last up is the healthcare sector. With U.S. healthcare spending solidly on the rise -- regrettably due to an ever-aging and more unhealthy population -- this makes for a defensive sector with growth still in the works. 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