This Week In ETFs: June 19th Edition

by on June 19, 2011

The second week of June was certainly a volatile one for stock markets around the world as strong gains one day were followed by horrendous losses the next. Despite ongoing turmoil in Greece, U.S. stocks did manage to finish the week flat, led by strong performances out of the financial, conglomerate, and industrial goods sectors. Leading on the downside, the biggest losers of the week were tech firms thanks to worries over slumping demand in Europe, and basic material firms which tumbled thanks to weak commodity prices and a stronger dollar. In fact, crude fell below the $93/bbl. mark, its lowest level in almost five months. Meanwhile, the ETF world was able to keep busy this week as well; even more funds launched in the last several days bringing the total number of exchange-traded products ever closer to the 1,300 mark. 

Below, we outline three of the best ETF stories from around the web this past week:

Covered Calls and ETFs: A Combination Worth Writing Home About at GlobalProfitsAlert:

This article by Todd Shriber discusses the covered call strategy in full and how it relates to the exchange-traded marketplace. Investors who are unfamiliar with the strategy, in which calls are sold on holdings in order to generate a steady stream of income, would be wise to read this article in order to get a better idea of how the method can be used in a broad portfolio. Todd also highlights one of his favorite ways to use this strategy by taking a look at high-beta funds such as those in the energy industry, giving investors a way to generate income no matter what happens with an underlying security.

Five ETFs You Need To Get Rich at The Motley Fool:

This article briefly analyzes the ETF industry’s history discussing how far the budding market has come in just over 15 years. While the author, Dan Caplinger, heralds the progress made by many funds, he also discusses how many products today are increasingly complicated and inappropriate for many investors. In light of this, Dan took a look at five ETFs that can make great building blocks for any long-term buy-and-hold investor. The picks stretch across both equity and bond funds and look to focus on cheap products in order to give investors the biggest bang for their buck.

Highlighting The PIIGS ETFs at ETF Database:

Thanks to ongoing turmoil in Greece, extreme volatility is virtually a guarantee over the next few days as bailout packages are sorted out and other nations come into focus. As a result, many traders are scrambling to find ways to play the PIIGS nations in ETF form.  Senior Analyst Michael Johnston shows investors in this article the main ways to play each of the five economies of Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, and Spain. While only a few have direct exposure, some do make up some material weightings of several other products, potentially offering investors a way to gain exposure via that route.

Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.