This past week featured yet another wild ride for equities as a number of factors combined to jolt markets up and down. The euro-zone saw heightened fears of default early in the week, as major indexes abroad lost more than 4% to open trading. Late in the week, one of the top ECB leaders stepped down from his position as he was opposed to the bond-buying program outlined to help dig the indebted currency bloc out of its hole. Meanwhile, in the U.S., President Barack Obama made a speech about the current unemployment rates and how he plans to solve the issue. The president proposed a $447 billion jobs plan to help put Americans back to work, but only time will tell if the legislation will be able to get past a deadlocked Congress [see also Five Equity ETFs With Low Betas For A Rocky Market].
Looking ahead to the next few days, the first full trading week of the month, investors will have plenty of data to chew on from around the world. While many will hope for a nice and stable week, it will likely be plagued with more volatility as its seems the the global economy has an enormous weight holding it back. Below, we outline three ETFs that to keep a close eye on as mid-September unfolds.
CurrencyShares Swiss Franc Trust (FXF)
Why FXF Will Be In Focus: Last week saw the Swiss National Bank make an unprecedented move by pegging the franc to the euro, thus eliminating what many considered to be the last remaining safe have currency, as the greenback seems to have lost its luster with a number of investors. The move to peg the franc came in response to the currency rapidly appreciating, putting downward pressure on the overall economy, as exports dragged. This ETF plummeted over 8% in reaction to the news, knocking it from its throne as the top performing currency ETF of the year. This week will see FXF further react to the peg against euro, especially considering that the euro has been fading quickly. The week will also see several important data releases from the Swiss including foreign currency reserves, CPI, unemployment, and a meeting of the Swiss National Bank to top things off [see also Top Three Currency ETFs Of 2011].
S&P North American Technology-Multimedia Networking Index Fund (IGN)
Why IGN Will Be In Focus: This week will see an earnings announcement from a major mobile company, Research in Motion (RIMM), a large holding of IGN. RIMM is famous for their Blackberry devices that were long-coveted devices on the market. Now that the iPhone and Android phones and systems have their grasps on the smartphone world, Blackberry devices have stiff competition. The company reports their most recent fiscal quarter earnings on Thursday after market close and analysts are predicting EPS of $1.32 with revenues around $4.47 billion. While the company has hit their last four earnings, positive numbers may still lead to a downturn for both the stock and ETF, as the current prediction is for the most recent quarter to see a decline in sales. Look for IGN to be active over speculation regarding, and ultimately, the earnings results themselves through out the week [see also Tech ETFs In Focus: Highlighting Some Hyper-Targeted Options].
European ETF (VGK)
Why VGK Will Be In Focus: Without a doubt, last week’s biggest market mover came from the instability in the euro-zone. The next few days will keep that sector in focus for a number of reasons. For starters, many feel that Greece will be defaulting in the near future, and by near future, some feel it is just a matter of days or weeks. The euro itself has rapidly depreciated against the dollar over the past few weeks, as investors flee the currency for safer grounds. Now that the Swiss franc has been pegged to the euro, it seems that Europe has few bright spots left for the investing world. VGK features exposure to a number of different countries with the U.K., France, Germany, and Switzerland leading the way. Exchanging hands almost 3 million times each day, VGK will be a good product to actively monitor through our the week as a number of factors combine to weigh on the euro-zone over the next couple of days [see also Safe Haven No More: Swiss Franc ETF Collapses On Peg To Euro].
[For more ETFs to watch sign up for our free ETF newsletter.]
Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.