|Bid||0.00 x 0|
|Ask||0.00 x 0|
|Day's Range||256.78 - 257.65|
|52 Week Range||222.12 - 263.37|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||N/A|
|Expense Ratio (net)||0.04%|
Gold prices (IAU) have been on a losing spree since mid-April due to the US dollar’s strength and diverging monetary policies in the United States (IVV) and the rest of the world. During the congressional testimony, Fed Chair Jerome Powell gave an upbeat assessment of the US (VOO) economy. The assets are attractive when interest rates (TLT) are high because gold doesn’t generate any income.
In the previous part of this series, we saw that fund managers have turned more positive on equities in the United States. According to a BAML (Bank of America Merrill Lynch) survey in July, FAANG plus BAT was identified as the most crowded trade for the sixth consecutive month, cited by 53% of respondents. BAML also said that this was the most crowded trade since the long US dollar in 2015.
Major ETF provider Vanguard surprised the markets this week with a decision to eliminate trading fees for a majority of ETFs on its online brokerage platform.
Stocks across the globe have suffered their worst first half in a year since 2010, wiping out trillions of dollars from the MSCI's 47-country world index. Inside the hot and flop ETFs in terms of fund flows.
Vanguard has long had a well-deserved reputation for offering some of the most inexpensive index funds and exchange traded funds and the firm's 77 ETFs have been available to clients without commissions, but Vanguard is upping its commission-free ETF status in significant fashion. In a statement Monday, the fund giant said it will offer nearly 1,800 ETFs to its clients on a commission free basis, including funds from major rivals such as iShares, State Street Global Advisors (SSgA) and Charles Schwab. The commission-free ETF arena is chock full of competition, including Fidelity, E*TRADE and Chalres Schwab.
VALLEY FORGE, Pa., July 2, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Vanguard today announced substantial reductions in the cost of investing with the firm by providing commission-free online transactions for the vast majority of ETFs. Vanguard, which has offered commission-free transactions of Vanguard ETFs since 2010, is broadening access beyond the company's 77 low-cost ETFs to nearly 1,800 offerings, including ETFs from BlackRock, Schwab, and SSgA. "Vanguard has led the industry in reducing the cost and complexity of investing for all investors for more than four decades.
Index fund and exchange traded funds giant Vanguard is planning a foray into the environmental, social and governance ETF arena. Vanguard is looking to introduce the Vanguard ESG U.S. Stock ETF and Vanguard ESG International Stock ETF. The fund sponsor already offers an ESG index fund, the Vanguard FTSE Social Index Fund.
E*TRADE Financial Corporation today announced it has surpassed 250 commission-free ETFs with the addition of 46 ETFs from six providers to its Commission-Free ETF Pr
The markets responded negatively to the latest news of U.S. President Donald trump imposing a 25 percent tariff on up to $50 billion in Chinese goods by plunging over 200 points at the open. The measures by the Trump administration will affect Chinese goods "that contain industrially significant technologies" and that the action comes "in light of China's theft of intellectual property and technology and its other unfair trade practices," said Trump in a statement. In addition, Trump announced that the imposition of further tariffs could be on the horizon should China retaliate with tariffs of their own on American products, such as crops.
The United States Census Bureau releases a monthly report on retail sales in the United States. As per the notes on the bureau’s website, it conducts an advance monthly survey of retail trade and food services companies. According to the latest report, which was released on June 14, advance estimates of US retail (XRT) and food services sales for May were $502.0 billion, an increase of 0.8% from the revised April reading of $497.9 billion.
As expected, the Federal Reserve increased the interest rate by 25 basis points after its June meeting, which concluded on June 13. The committee increased the target range of the federal funds rate to 1.75%–2.00%, and the surprisingly hawkish tone of its statement was a far cry from the cautionary tone it struck in its previous policy statements. The decision to increase the US interest rate (AGG) was unanimous with an 8-0 vote.
There are clearly reasons to continue giving this bull market the benefit of doubt, but the risks are rising and that means a defensive approach is warranted. While we won’t rule out new bull market highs as the year progresses, one should be cautious in committing new or additional money to stocks, particularly over the near-term. Over the 58 years since 1960, the S&P 500 has averaged a gain of 6.8% for the winter period, while the summer average is only 1.0%.
For the week ending June 1, the S&P 500 Index closed at 2,734.62 and appreciated 0.49%. Among the S&P 500 sectors, the energy (XLE), IT (XLK), and real estate sectors drove the index higher, while the financial (XLF), telecom, and industrial sectors were a drag on the index in the previous week. The S&P 500 Index’s large speculators, including hedge funds, have reduced the number of net bullish positions to a ten-week low for the week ending June 1.
US markets (VOO) were surprisingly resilient for the week ending June 1 despite increased political uncertainty, Italy’s political drama, and renewed anxiety about trade tensions. US equity markets had a positive close in May. Tech and small caps leading the charge and this week’s price action will likely depend on how markets react to renewed trade tensions. Last week, the Trump Administration slapped tariffs on Europe, Canada, and China.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis (or BEA) released its second estimate for the first-quarter real GDP on May 30. The report indicated that all four major components had a positive contribution to GDP growth in the first quarter. The service sector (IYC) was the second-highest contributor to US economic growth.
The Conference Board website explains that the consumer confidence index (or CCI) is a barometer of the health of the US economy (VOO) from the perspective of the consumer. The consumer confidence survey compiles consumer perceptions of employment and business conditions and their expectations for the next six months. The latest report indicated that the consumer confidence index has increased to 128.0 in May as compared to a downward revised April reading of 125.6.
Last week (ended May 25), the S&P 500 appreciated by 0.31% and closed at 2,721.3, helped primarily by reduced odds of a fourth rate hike this year. The US-North Korea summit took a new turn when Donald Trump canceled the summit, leading to some risk-off trading. However, the losses were limited for the S&P 500.
Global markets mostly fell last week (ended May 25) as political uncertainty kept investors at bay. Donald Trump calling off the North Korea summit and later saying that the summit could still happen, political disturbances in Spain and Italy, and volatile crude oil prices all dragged down equity indexes. US indexes (VOO), however, showed a reduction in concerns about higher rates after the Fed indicated at its May meeting that it is alright with inflation overshooting its 2% target in the short term.
Payment giant Visa (V) benefits from higher consumer spending due to lower unemployment, positive economic momentum, digital technology expansion, and higher prices. Higher oil prices and inflation help payment processors such as Visa and Mastercard (MA), boosting their financials.