|Bid||208.56 x 800|
|Ask||220.00 x 900|
|Day's Range||209.70 - 210.16|
|52 Week Range||154.72 - 210.59|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||N/A|
|Beta (3Y Monthly)||1.10|
|Expense Ratio (net)||0.10%|
Stocks are up over 16% so far this year, as tracked by the S&P 500 Index. That's astonishing given that last year, from the start to the top on Sept. 20, 2018, the S&P 500 Index was up only 9.62%.S&P 500 Index Total Return Source BloombergInvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading TipsSo, what's driving all of the buying?I'll start with FOMO. Fear of missing out is a powerful motivator in the markets -- the idea that if you don't get in and buy, you'll miss out on the big rally. I believe that's a big part of getting more investors, from hedge funds to individuals, to reduce their money market funds or buying power in their brokerage accounts and shift to stocks.And as the market builds on gains and the financial and Main Street media reports more and more on the upward progress, it only fuels the buying. And this isn't a new thing. Take any of the past big up market moves of the past decades and you'll see FOMO kick in and remain until fear takes over after some big down days. We saw examples of that at the start of February and October of last year. * 10 S&P 500 Stocks to Weather the Earnings Storm Next is the Federal Reserve and its Open Market Committee (FOMC). The FOMC bungled its messaging last year. It laid out the plan to watch core inflation as measured by the Personal Consumption Expenditure Index (PCE) and said it wanted to see the PCE reach 2% and then some before it would need to act. Then it acted anyway, reducing the bond portfolio and stoking fears of more aggressive actions alongside raising its target range for Fed Funds.Then, with the stock market slipping and politics coming in on the play, it punted, and now it's pretty clear that it's going to be passive for a while. This means that the bond market will continue to be supported with the FOMC keeping its bond portfolio more or less intact. 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. The ETF for broad synthetic exposure is the Vanguard Health ETF (NYSEARCA:VHT).The key to dealing with a toppy-looking market is to be aware of what got it there, the threats that are rising and where to begin to diversify ahead of the next pull-back or sell-off.Neil George is the editor of Profitable Investing and does not have any holdings in the securities mentioned above. More From InvestorPlace * 2 Toxic Pot Stocks You Should Avoid * 7 Stocks to Buy for Spring Season Growth * This Is How You Beat Back a Bear Market * 7 Dental Stocks to Buy That Will Make You Smile Compare Brokers The post The Market Is Strong, Even With Rising Risks -- What to Buy Now? appeared first on InvestorPlace.
Tech stocks might have had the wind knocked out of them to finish last year, but the sector's standing as a long-term source of growth still looks clear.The world is becoming ever more dependent on technology. If you have any doubts, ask yourself: How long have you spent on your smartphone today? Are you reading this article on it right now? Have you taken an Uber recently? Have a "smart" home-security system? Plan on listening to your smart speaker later? Those are just some of the most obvious advances in tech. Behind the scenes, data centers are increasingly powering American business, health records are going digital, retail is using big-data analysis to better deliver its wares ... you get the point.The technology sector was brutalized in the fourth quarter of 2018. Almost everything was lower - the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index fell 14% - but tech companies more than carried their weight, dropping 17.7% to make them the third-worst-performing sector during that period. Likewise, though, tech stocks have been among the leaders of 2019's rebound, rallying more than 12%, which in turn has sent numerous tech exchange-traded funds (ETFs) skyward.The problem with investing in individual tech stocks is the risk. The sector is rife with disruption, and even longtime winners can suddenly find themselves on the outs - ask Nokia (NOK) or BlackBerry (BB). But you can whittle down that risk by investing in large bundles of these stocks, via ETFs.Here are 13 of the best tech ETFs to buy. These funds allow you to participate in the growth of the whole sector, or even smaller industry trends, while minimizing the risk of single-stock implosions. SEE ALSO: The 19 Best ETFs for a Prosperous 2019
Apple quarterly result provided some relief to investors and swept away negative sentiments from the stock. As such, investors could consider the ETFs with the largest allocation to this tech titan.
Apple bested analyst expectations in earnings and revenue for its fiscal first quarter, muting earlier warnings by CEO Tim Cook that results would disappoint due to lackluster iPhone sales. Shares of Apple ...
Apple is scheduled to report its fiscal first quarter earnings after the closing bell on Tuesday in what will be an important sign alluding to the health of not just the technology sector, but the overall capital markets given the size and reach of the iPhone maker. Last year, Apple joined Amazon as one of the companies to cross the $1 trillion mark during the extended bull run. Since then, a large dosage of volatility upended the markets to end 2018, including the tech sector and particularly Apple stock, which got its fair share of downgrades near year's end.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average moved slightly higher–over 100 points on Tuesday–as the markets brace themselves ahead of Apple reporting its fiscal first quarter results. Apple’s fiscal year starts in ...
How to Invest Like Jeff Bezos: The Top Three Sectors to Watch(Continued from Prior Part)Key startup investmentsIn the previous article, we looked at Amazon (AMZN) founder and CEO Jeff Bezos’s key investments in the technology sector. While Twitter
How to Invest Like Jeff Bezos: The Top Three Sectors to WatchJeff Bezos’s investmentsJeff Bezos, Amazon’s (AMZN) founder and CEO, topped Forbes’s list of the world’s billionaires in 2018. According to the list, he had $112 billion in
Demand for Apple's iPhones is falling but the service segment is gaining attention. Does it call for an entry point to Apple ETFs over the medium term?
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rallied over 600 points as job growth surged to 312,000 during the month of December, handily beating economists' expectations of 176,000 nonfarm payrolls added. "The far bigger than expected 312,000 jump in non-farm payrolls in December would seem to make a mockery of market fears of an impending recession," said Paul Ashworth, chief U.S. economist at Capital Economics.
With the new tax law changes all but wiping out itemized deductions, filers are looking for any ways they can to catch a break. Account holders over the age of 70 1/2 are subject to RMDs — required minimum distributions — which is the amount they’re obligated to withdraw from their tax-deferred retirement accounts and pay taxes on. “The government wants its money back,” retirement expert Ed Slott tells Yahoo Finance.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell over 600 points on Thursday as shares of iPhone maker Apple declined 9 percent in the early trading session. "While it's likely a combination of both macro and micro, the contribution of the former means that maneuvering through the upcoming earnings season will be like swimming in shark invested waters," said Peter Boockvar, chief investment officer at Bleakley Advisory Group, about what prompted Apple's guidance cut. Shares of Apple fell over 7 percent on Wednesday after trading was halted prior to the announcement. In a letter to investors, Apple CEO Tim Cook cited lower-than-expected iPhone revenue and China's weakening economy as major headwinds for the tech giant.
Two exchange-traded funds (ETFs) with the largest capital Apple allocations-- Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK) and Vanguard Information Technology ETF (VGT) fell in after hours trading following a weak Q1 guidance from the iPhone maker. Shares of Apple fell over 7 percent after trading was halted prior to the announcement. In a letter to investors, Apple CEO Tim Cook cited lower-than-expected iPhone revenue and China's weakening economy as major headwinds for the tech giant. Apple lowered its Q1 revenue guidance to $84 billion--down from the previous projection of $89 to $93 billion.
During trading hours of Nov 26, Microsoft surpassed Apple to become the most-valuable publicly traded company, putting the related ETFs in focus.
The U.S. equity rally is beginning to lose steam and investors should not expect markets to maintain their breakneck spurt of yesteryear. Nevertheless, traders may still find value in some battered sectors ...