|Bid||90.27 x 800|
|Ask||90.28 x 800|
|Day's Range||89.91 - 90.85|
|52 Week Range||71.08 - 91.85|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||8.13|
|Beta (3Y Monthly)||0.62|
|Expense Ratio (net)||0.12%|
Even though the cannabis industry is still in its infancy, investors looking for a marijuana stock with a dividend aren't completely out of luck. Income-seeking investors should look to Innovative Industrial Properties (NYSE:IIPR) as a possible pot play. IIPR is structured as a real estate investment trust (REIT) and to keep that favorable tax treatment, REITs must be out 90% of their operating income in the form of dividends.Source: Shutterstock Cannabis investing is still in its formative stages, but there are a few traits many marijuana stocks share in common. To be clear, we're talking about the industry's credible names that trade on major exchanges. Think Cronos Group Inc. (NASDAQ:CRON), Aphria (NYSE:APHA) and others.Essentially the entire universe of major cannabis stocks are considered growth names. It is merely a matter of whether they are mid- or small-cap growth stocks. As a result, investors searching for dividends in the marijuana space are not going to find a lot.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips * 5 Red-Hot IPO Stocks to Buy for the Long Run For the moment, the best way for investors in the U.S. to marry the concepts of dividends and cannabis stocks is with IIPR. IIPR Backstory Leads to a Wide MoatIIPR's backstory remains relevant today. Innovative Industrial Properties was able to procure its REIT status before President Trump won the White House. After Trump won, the company's rivals encountered difficulties securing the REIT treatment, essentially extending a competitive advantage to IIPR.Innovative Industrial Properties owns and operates industrial venues that are leased to legal medicinal cannabis firms. Moreover, IIPR fills an important void for many legitimate cannabis growers and operators: providing funding that is unobtainable at traditional banks.Business owners known getting a loan from a traditional bank is hard. When your business is considered illegal at the federal level and your bank is federally regulated -- as all banks are in the U.S. -- there is no avenue to financing at that bank.Innovative Industrial Properties' model is simple: it buys properties from growers that are regulated at the state level and leases those properties back to the growers. By selling to IIPR, the growers get much-needed capital without the hassle of being turned down by their local bank. The benefit to Innovative Industrial Properties is that the leases its tenants sign are usually long term, providing the company and its investors with revenue predictability and maybe down the road, low earnings variability.For those pondering how Innovative Industrial Properties is able to trade on a major U.S. exchange, the answer is twofold. First, the company does not actually touch marijuana plants or grow them. Second, Executive Chairman Alan Gold ran healthcare REIT BioMed Realty Trust prior to that company being sold in 2016, meaning he has a history of running a legitimate, NYSE-traded company. The Bottom Line on IIPRInnovative Industrial Properties has a lot going for it, including the aforementioned competitive advantage, which generates robust yields on its deals."Capital remains sufficiently scarce that IIP averages a 15% yield on its sale-leaseback deals," according to Barron's.However, positive traits do not always come cheap in financial markets. Due to their above-average dividend yields and defensive characteristics, REITs usually are not value stocks -- nor are price-to-earnings ratios generally useful metrics. You invest in REITs for the payouts, not necessarily price increases.However, Innovative Industrial Properties trades for nearly 106x times earnings, making it feel like an Internet stock dressed up as a REIT. Plus, the stock yields just 1.78%. That is less than what investors get on the S&P 500 and 10-year Treasuries, which are significantly less risky than shares of IIPR.However, many pot stocks don't have a P/E ratio at all -- because they don't yet have earnings. * 7 Top-Rated Biotech Stocks to Invest In Today Based on its steady funds from operations (FFO), Innovative Industrial Properties' valuation is not actually alarmingly high. Importantly, that FFO implies the company has adequate payout coverage and dividend growth potential.Todd Shriber does not own any of the aforementioned securities. More From InvestorPlace * 4 Top American Penny Pot Stocks (Buy Before June 21) * The 7 Best Tech Stocks to Buy for the Second Half of 2019 * 7 Top-Rated Biotech Stocks to Invest In Today * 4 Semiconductor Stocks to Sell Compare Brokers The post Looking for a Pot Stock With a Wide Moat and a Dividend? Try IIPR appeared first on InvestorPlace.
It seems like forever ago, but the average 12-month certificate of deposit (CD) used to yield well more than 5%.In fact, prior to the tech wreck of 2000 - and the start of two decades of experimental monetary policy by the Federal Reserve - 5% would have been considered low. It wasn't usual to see CD yields over 10% in the 1980s. Those were the days!It's unlikely that we'll ever see 10% CD rates again in our lifetimes. Even 5% would seem like a stretch in a world in which the average 12-month CD still yields less than 1% after more than three years of Fed rate hikes.It's important to remember, though, that the high yields of the past came at a time of much higher inflation. At today's lower inflation rates, even a 3% yield allows you to stay well ahead of inflation. You're not getting rich quick at that yield, but it's respectable. And importantly, it can be done safely.Today, we're going to look at five safe ways to pocket a yield of at least 3%. While you might want to push for a higher return on your long-term investment portfolio, you can consider these as options for your cash savings that you might need in the next one to five years. SEE ALSO: 33 Ways to Get Higher Yields (Up to 12%!)
Rate cut expectations have been inching higher. What does the bond market's message send to investors? asks income expert Bryan Perry, editor of Cash Machine.
Just when it looked like the major U.S. equity benchmarks were poised to snap out of their recent doldrums, market participants sold modest early session gains, sending the Dow Jones Industrial Average, Nasdaq Composite and S&P 500 slightly lower in the afternoon, but buyers rallied late in the day to send all three indexes slightly higher.Source: Shutterstock The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite added 0.21% and 0.27%, respectively, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose by 0.17%. Eighteen Dow members finished higher Thursday, a day after just three closed up. Careful What You Wish ForThese should be the ideal days for investors to embrace defensive sectors, but some supposedly low-volatility names are betraying that reputation. As was noted in this space yesterday, the strong dollar is hampering consumer staples stocks.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading TipsWalgreen Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA) was the second-worst performer among the 30 Dow stocks Thursday, shedding 2.1%. The company, one of the largest pharmacy operators in the U.S., is in the midst of a cost-cutting effort that could see up to 200 of its Boots stores shuttered, but investors are not responding positively to that news. * 7 Stocks to Buy for Monster Growth Shares of the drug store giant now reside nearly 42% below the 52-week high, putting the stock in bear market territory two times over, and Walgreen Boots Alliance currently trades uncomfortably close to its 52-week low.Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) was the worst offender in the Dow today, sliding 2.3% after UBS downgraded the high-yielding telecommunications giant to "neutral" from "buy." UBS analyst John C. Hodulik reiterated a $59 price target on the stock, implying modest upside from Thursday's closing levels."Hodulik said that potential industry consolidation and the adoption of 5G technology might provide some upside to the shares, but any such benefit 'appears partially priced in," according to Barron's.Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), one of the Dow's largest components, traded slightly lower on speculation that if China decides to use rare earths metals as a weapon in the trade war against the U.S., smartphone makers could be constrained by limited supplies.China dominates the market for rare earth metals and those metals are primary components in an array of consumer electronics, such as smartphones and tablets. Fears of crimped rare earth exports come as Apple is getting ready to unveil yet another iPhone."So even a short term action affecting production could have longer term consequences for the company," said Goldman Sachs, according to Barron's. Bottom Line on the Dow Jones TodayFor equity investors, it feels like there is nowhere to run to and nowhere to hide this month, but some familiar sectors are providing shelter from trade war storms. No the, real estate and utilities sectors, neither of which have any representation in the Dow, are not considered adventurous fare.However, the Utilities Select Sector SPDR (NYSEARCA:XLU) and the Vanguard Real Estate ETF (NYSEARCA:VNQ) are up modestly higher this month while the S&P 500 is down 5%.In terms of individual names to consider, Dow component Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO) is down more than 5% this month, but that may be a case of the baby being thrown out with the bathwater.In a note out Thursday, JPMorgan reiterated an "outperform" rating on Cisco, reminding investors about the company's relatively light China exposure. The stock yields 2.6%."Cisco remains our top pick for investors looking at safe havens in the current environment to navigate through the trade war noise," according to JPMorgan.Todd Shriber does not own any of the aforementioned securities. More From InvestorPlace * 4 Top American Penny Pot Stocks (Buy Before June 21) * 7 Stocks to Sell Amid an Escalating Trade War * 5 REITs to Buy While They're Dirt Cheap * The Only 3 Marijuana Stocks You Need to Own Compare Brokers The post Dow Jones Today: Another Day of Market Struggles appeared first on InvestorPlace.
Investments are inherently risky - real estate in particular. The subprime mortgage crisis was barely a decade ago and it played a large role in a devastating recession. Is real estate a good investment today?
Real estate investment trusts and sector-related ETFs could be an area for investors to look to as the U.S.-China trade tiff grips the markets. REITs are comprised of companies that own office towers, ...
Sectors and exchange traded funds focusing on the domestic economy could benefit investors amid international headline risk. Even better if those funds offer solid income streams and above-average dividend ...
A recent uptick in equity market uncertainty is prompting many investors to revisit defensive and lower volatility assets and the related ETFs. Some of the ETFs to buy for investors looking to be defensive are broad market funds and that makes sense, but some sectors can help investors bolster their portfolios' defensive postures.The real estate sector is one of the smallest sectors in the S&P 500, but is also home to plenty of ETFs to buy for investors looking for defensive exposure. Recently, the Vanguard Real Estate ETF (NYSEARCA:VNQ), the largest real estate ETF by assets, has performed less poorly than the broader market. Historically, large-cap real estate investment trust (REIT) funds have not only delivered higher dividend yields than broader equity benchmarks, but less volatility as well.With expectations in place that the Federal Reserve will not raise interest rates this year, the rate-sensitive real estate sector could present defensive investors with a slew of credible ETFs to buy. Adding to that case is the domestic focus of the real estate sector, making the group ideal for investors looking skirt international headline risk.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips * 6 Signs That Marijuana Legalization is Closer Than You Think For investors searching for some defensive ETFs to buy, consider some of the following real estate funds. Pacer Benchmark Data & Infrastructure Real Estate SCTR ETF (SRVR)Source: Shutterstock Expense ratio: 0.60% per year, or $60 on a $10,000 investment.A good point to remember when looking for ETFs to buy, or any asset class for that matter, is to look for strength in the face of weakness. The Pacer Benchmark Data & Infrastructure Real Estate SCTR ETF (NYSEARCA:SRVR) certainly fits that bill. While broader indexes and some traditional real estate funds have recently scuffled, SRVR is up 1.10% over the past week, extending its impressive year-to-date gain to 22.61%.SRVR can be seen as a next-generation real estate ETF to buy because it is levered to a slew of exciting trends, including cloud computing, 5G and other revolutionary technologies. What makes SRVR one of the premier real estate ETFs to buy is that rival, traditional funds, such as VNQ, have only token exposure to the REITs that are driving SRVR higher. Investors are not giving up on income by embracing SRVR. The REIT fund had a dividend yield of 3.25% at the end of the first quarter. Overall, this ETF buy is offering up plenty for investors to like, including an above-average dividend yield, significant leverage to a fast-growing theme and strength in the face of broader market adversity. Global X SuperDividend REIT ETF (SRET)Source: Shutterstock Expense ratio: 0.59%The Global X SuperDividend REIT ETF (NASDAQ:SRET) is at the other end of the spectrum as the aforementioned SRVR. SRET is down 2.57% over the past week and its chart indicates the fund could have further to fall over the near term. So this fund may not be an ETF to buy right now, but it is one for investors to consider when global headwinds abate.SRET tracks the Solactive Global SuperDividend REIT Index and holds 30 of the world's highest yielding REITs, giving it some international diversity. That said, SRET's ex-US exposure is currently modest and comes in the form of a roughly 10% combined allocation to France and Australia. With more than 59% of its weight allocated to mortgage REITs, or mREITs, SRET is positioned to take advantage of a more sanguine interest rate outlook in the U.S. With a 30-day SEC yield of 7.97%, SRET is most certainly a high-yield asset, meaning it needs the Federal Reserve to remain on hold with rate hikes. * 7 Dividend Stocks to Buy as the Trade War Reignites Still, some investors view this an ETF to buy. SRET had $180.72 million in assets under management at the end of the first quarter, a figure that has since jumped to almost $204 million. SRET also pays a monthly dividend. Pacer Benchmark Industrial Real Estate SCTR ETF (INDS)Source: Oleg Zaytsev via FlickrExpense ratio: 0.60%Like its aforementioned stablemate SRVR, the Pacer Benchmark Industrial Real Estate SCTR ETF (NYSEARCA:INDS) is an ETF to buy because it is at the epicenter of some seismic shifts in the real estate universe. There are plenty of headlines out there about the "death of retail" and the "retail apocalypse," but that chatter is relevant to brick-and-mortar retailers, not e-commerce names like Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN). Simply put, e-commerce is the future of retail, brick-and-mortar stores are rapidly closing and e-commerce companies need space.Retailers closed a record-breaking 102 million square feet of store space in 2017, then smashed that record in 2018 by closing another 155 million square feet of space, according to estimates by the commercial real estate firm CoStar Group," reports Business InsiderMore than 6,000 retail stores have been shuttered just this year and some analysts believe the U.S. remains well overstocked when it comes to physical retail space. Expect the industrial REITs in INDS to snatch up plenty of that space and market it to purveyors of online retail operations. INDS yields 3.35% and is up 20.63% year-to-date, trouncing its more traditional rivals, like VNQ, while underscoring its status as one of the best real estate ETFs to buy.Todd Shriber does not own any of the aforementioned securities. More From InvestorPlace * 2 Toxic Pot Stocks You Should Avoid * 7 Dividend Stocks to Buy as the Trade War Reignites * 10 Stocks That Could Squeeze Short Sellers, Including CGC * 5 Tech Stocks Getting Crushed Compare Brokers The post 3 REIT ETFs to Buy for a Dovish Fed appeared first on InvestorPlace.
The U.S. labor market has been in great shape defying slowdown worries. Unemployment rate fell to a fresh 49-year low in April. Play this optimism with these sector ETFs and stocks.
I have generally not been a big backer of REITs over the years for a variety of reasons, including complex taxes, high payout ratios and their dependence on real estate markets, notes Chuck Carlson, dividend expert and editor of DRIP Investor.
Vanguard is the best-known pioneer of low-cost investing, including in the exchange-traded fund space. But it's hardly alone anymore, as providers such as Schwab, iShares and SPDR have all hacked away at each other with ever-shrinking fees.Still, don't sleep on Vanguard ETFs. While Vanguard isn't always No. 1 among the cheapest index funds in every class, it's still a low-cost leader in several areas, and it's typically one of the least expensive options no matter where you look.And inexpensive does matter. Let's say an investor puts $100,000 apiece in two different funds that both gain 8% annually, but Fund A charges 1% in fees while Fund B charges 0.5%. In 30 years, Fund A will be worth a respectable $744,335 ... but Fund B will be worth $865,775. That's roughly $120,000 lost not just in fees, but also lost opportunity cost from returns that could have been reinvested in the fund.Here are eight low-cost Vanguard ETFs that investors can use as part of a core portfolio. All of these index funds are among the least expensive in their class and offer wide exposure to their respective market areas. SEE ALSO: The 19 Best ETFs for a Prosperous 2019
ETFs tracking real estate investment trusts, which make up nearly half of IBD ETF Leaders screen, are suddenly out of favor.
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.
The Urban Land Institute released a report outlining the climate risks associated with real estate investing–something that investors in the tangible asset class might not be aware of when assessing risk ...
Interest rates might be heading south, but the prices of homes listed for sale are heading north. It's a trend that could likely persist, according to Danielle Hale, realtor.com's chief economist. Home values surged from 2016 to the middle of 2018, but was accompanied by a rise in interest rates as the Federal Reserve instituted four rate hikes through 2018. In move that was widely anticipated by most market experts, the Fed last week elected to keep rates unchanged, holding its policy rate in a range between 2.25 percent and 2.5 percent.
Real estate investment trusts and the relevant exchange traded funds are surging this year, but some non-tradition real estate funds are delivering truly impressive returns. A prime example of that theme ...
The latest National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index showed that homebuilder sentiment was unchanged at 62, but could be a sign that the housing market is beginning to stabilize. ...
Real estate investment trusts and related REIT ETFs are rebounding as investors look back into attractive yield-generating assets with the Federal Reserve signalling it will ease back on further interest ...
The U.S. economy and markets are providing a collection of tailwinds for specific industries and investments. And it is resulting in a buoyant general stock market that has the S&P 500 Index up 11.25% year-to-date.But rather than just betting on the general stock market, I have a collection of market segments that will help you construct a better overall portfolio for growth and income, all with less risk and better-balanced returns for the year. * 10 Blue-Chip Stocks to Lead the Market Specifically, I'm talking about a few key exchange-traded funds (ETFs) to buy. With that said, let's dive into the best ETFs to buy for specific sectors.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading TipsSource: Bloomberg BanksI'll start with one of the most stellar market segments that you've probably been ignoring: regional banks. Mention regional banks and many investors will yawn and look away, but this is not only one of the best performing segments of the stock market, but also one of the cheapest values right now. Here's the lead, the regional bank stocks embodied in the KBW Regional Bank Index as synthetically represented in the SPDR S&P Regional Banking ETF (NYSEARCA:KRE) has generated a YTD return of 20.88%.That's of course more than twice the S&P Index and there is more to come. Banks have been hobbled by legislative and administrative regulation over the past decade following the financial crisis of 2007-2008. The result has been that banking became a treacherous business resulting in the high-cost of loan origination as well as other consumer and business bank products. But last year saw a series of legislative reforms as well as administrative changes to provide relief for banks -- particularly for regional and smaller banks.In addition, with the Federal Reserve Bank's Open Market Committee (FOMC) working to guide interest rates to more normalized levels, banks have begun to have breathing room to better price deposits and loans resulting in higher net interest margins.Then there is the Tax Cuts & Jobs Act of 2017 (TCJA), which has resulted in improving net profitability for domestic banks.The stock market didn't really care until now. But since many of the quality banks in the KRE ETF are still valued at either discounts or smaller premiums of book value than traditionally valued, banks are still very good value.Source: Bloomberg REITsNext up is another market segment that's done better than the S&P 500 for the year while continuing to provide better performance over last year as well. Real estate investment trusts (REITs) continue to benefit from the stronger U.S. economy, which fosters demand for properties and supports rising lease income. The result is that REITs are being recognized for their underlying good assets on top of the higher yields offered. * 10 Monthly Dividend Stocks to Buy to Pay the Bills One of the best REIT ETFs to buy is the Vanguard Real Estate ETF (NYSEARCA:VNQ). This ETF has exposure to some of the best REITs in the U.S. market. The YTD return is running at 11.87%. Moreover, REITs, much like banks noted above are still valued at a lower price-to-book ratio than tradition levels pre-2007. Add in the additional benefit of the TCJA providing individual investors with a 20% deduction of taxable income from REIT dividends and the REIT space looks even more lucrative.Source: Bloomberg Preferred StockSimilar to the other investment segments above, preferred stock is another overlooked sector of the market. Preferred stock provides a bond-like investment with higher established dividend yields that can be depended upon for income in any portfolio. And they also provide a good backstop for portfolios when, not just if, the general common stock market takes a pause or worse.Preferred stocks are faring well so far this year. And one of the easiest means for "synthetically" investing is in the iShares Preferred & Income Securities ETF (NASDAQ:PFF). The ETF has turned in a YTD return of 6.20%. And it offers a nice dividend yield currently running at 5.61%.Source: Bloomberg UtilitiesUtilities also provided a good alternative to the general stock market's downturns last year. And so far this year, utilities continue to perform well. Utilities are typically structured between regulated and unregulated business units. The regulated businesses provide core local essential services with rate charges and margins set by local public utility commissions (PUCs). This provides dependable profits that form the base for reliable dividends making utilities good hedges for vacillating general stock markets.The unregulated businesses are typically ancillary activities on a national or global scale often involving power generation and transmission or pipeline operations. It is this side of the utilities that provides companies and their shareholders with further growth opportunities as well as higher dividend distributions. * 8 Cheap Stocks That Cost Less Than $10 One of the best ETFs to invest in the utilities segment is the Vanguard Utilities ETF (NYSEARCA:VPU). The ETF has a YTD return of 7.02% and provides exposure to a great collection of utilities with regulated and unregulated business units. In addition, it also generates and pays a nice dividend along the way currently yielding 3.22%.Source: Bloomberg HealthcareThe U.S. is a nation that is aging and becoming ever less healthy. This isn't a good mix for one of the leading economies of the planet. In a recent study by the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. Census, by 2035, which is not that far away, it is projected that 78 million folks will be 65 years or older. And by that same year, those at or under the age of 18 years will be 76 million.This will be a significant change in the demographics of the nation, which has traditionally been a younger nation with more healthy and able folks to produce more for the economy.And it gets worse when it comes to the health of the overall population whether old or young. The Mayo Clinic recently released its extensive study of the health of the population and is saying that 3% or less is living a healthy lifestyle. This is not surprising as all that it takes is to take a stroll around many neighborhoods around the nation and do some people watching. We are a nation of fatter people that don't look like they could run up a flight of stairs let alone walk up one.The U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) just released a study and survey that indicates that 36.50% of the U.S. population is obese. This sets up the nation for more diabetes and all of the ancillary health effects of that disease. And then there is heart health and its complications. And if you're obese, slipping and falling is easier to do resulting in more injury risks.Add in a high poverty rate which can lead to further health challenges for young and old and other factors showing health troubles, including infant mortality and the nation doesn't look too healthy.And of course, last year we saw that life expectancy in the U.S. population stopped seeing improvements with some segments dropping in life years still to come. And as we know, the end of the line is where healthcare really ramps up to keep those alive a bit longer.No wonder that healthcare spending is big in the U.S. and climbing quickly. According to the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), healthcare spending increased in 2017 by 3.90% to $3.9 trillion or $10,739 per person. This represents 17.90% of the then gross domestic product of the U.S. (GDP).And it is getting worse. The CMS projects that spending between 2017 through 2016 will continue to rise by an average annual rate of 5.50%, reaching $5.7 trillion. And given projections for GDP for the period, that would come closer to 20% of the overall economy.Now this isn't good news for the U.S. population, but it does provide for a silver lining for us as investors as investing in health is a good source for income and gains, even though they come from the increasingly ill of the economy.One of the best ways to get general exposure to the healthcare market is through the Vanguard Health Care ETF (NYSEARCA:VHT). This ETF has generated a YTD return of 8.11% and provides for well-diversified exposure to the leading healthcare stocks in the U.S. market.Source: Bloomberg Information TechnologyInformation technology continues to be one of the more exciting market segments that is easy to grab the attention of individual investors. After all, who doesn't like the latest new gotta-have gadgets whether in hand-held devices or the latest apps. This segment has plenty of companies that grab headlines and consumers' interest year in and year out.But one of the bigger stories isn't just about the next new-new thing, but rather the new way of making profits. More technology companies are moving away from depending on unit sales of gizmos and apps and more toward subscription sales. This is resulting in the rise of recurring income, which is not only more reliable than one-off unit sales, but it also provides the ability for technology companies to build-up their technology empires with more certainty.The result is that the companies in this space that have been successfully shifting to recurring income are driving more profits and better performing shares. That was the case last year in the segment generating positive returns, but also so far this year. * 7 of the Best Biotech ETFs The easy way to invest in the best of the information technology segment is in the Vanguard Information Technology ETF (NYSEARCA:VGT). This ETF has generated a YTD return of a whopping 15.98% and given the demand for the underlying products and services including for cloud computing and the emergence of fifth-generation wireless communications (5G), this segment and the ETF should remain in the green for the year.Source: Bloomberg Oil & GasOil and gas remain a lucrative market as the U.S. continues to emerge as the world's leading producer of the petrol patch. Global demand remains robust for crude oil and refined products and natural gas particularly in more easily transportable liquified natural gas (LNG) is driving profits for U.S. companies.In addition, the softer pricing, particularly for crude oil, prior to last year provided the incentive for producers to increase their field exploration and production (E&P) efficiencies. This, in turn, is providing for profitability, even at lower crude oil and natural gas prices.And one of the limitations for U.S. companies has been the lack of additional capacities in pipeline and marine terminal facilities for both oil and gas. But thankfully to the current administration, approvals have spurred additional and expanded lines and facilities providing for more deliverable petrol for more cashflows for U.S. companies.And then we have the Organization of Petroleum Producing Countries plus Russia (OPEC+). OPEC+ has come through with production limits which is also aiding petrol prices and operating margins for U.S. petroleum companies.The best ETF to invest in this segment is the Energy Select Sector SPDR ETF (NYSEARCA:XLE). This ETF has exposure to the up, down and midstream petrol companies. And it has generated a great YTD return of 15.29% with many inside the market segment still valued at lower levels of underlying book and trailing sales. Add in the dividend yield of 3.22%, and it makes for another in my collection of best ETFs for growth and income.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 Consumer Stocks to Buy and Hold for Years * 4 China Stocks Soaring on Trade Hopes * 3 Esports Stocks to Benefit From the Boom Compare Brokers The post 7 of the Best ETFs to Buy for a Rock-Solid Portfolio appeared first on InvestorPlace.