Bargain shoppers finally stepped in after a long week of profit-taking pressures on Wall Street. Major equity indexes soared into green territory as investors rejoiced over renewed optimism that a deal in Congress would be reached before the much-feared “fiscal cliff”. Encouraging economic data also found its way into the headlines as existing home sales blew past estimates; October sales data came in at 4.79 million, jumping right past the 4.70 million estimate, as well as last month’s reading of 4.69 million [see 5 ETF Strategies To Reign In Risk].
After taking a nasty beating last week, the tech sector bounced back with full force today, and the Nasdaq ETF (QQQ, A-) led the way higher with a sizable 2.38% gain. As risk appetites surged, the S&P 500 ETF (SPY, A) charged ahead of the Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF (DIA, A). Overseas, markets also enjoyed a very positive start to the trading week [Download 101 ETF Lessons Every Financial Advisor Should Learn].
Bond ETF Roundup
Considering the massive rally on the equity front, bonds performed quite well across the board. Prevailing “risk on” sentiment carried junk bonds to the top of the list in terms of performance, while not surprisingly, “safe haven” U.S. Treasuries sank into red territory.
Commodity ETF Roundup
A weakening U.S. dollar paved the way higher for commodity prices across the board, with natural gas being the only loser on the day. Gold futures prices popped and managed to settled just above $1,730 an ounce, while crude oil finished the session just shy of the $90 a barrel mark.
ETF Chart Of The Day #1: XHB
The State Street SPDR Homebuilders ETF (XHB, A+) was one of the best performers, gaining a solid 2.01% on the day. Homebuilder stocks rallied into green territory as positive housing data served as a fundamental catalyst on the day. In addition to better-than-expected existing home sales, investors also cheered on an improving home builders’ index; this figure came in at 46, marking a noteworthy improvement in builders’ sentiment after coming in at 41 last month [see also Why Peter Schiff Is Embracing The Fiscal Cliff].
ETF Chart Of The Day #2: VXX
The Barclays iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN (VXX, A-) was one of the worst performers amid the broad rally on Wall Street, shedding a dismal 8.59% on the day. Uncertainty seemingly evaporated from the stock market as growing optimism over the “fiscal cliff” resolution restored confidence. The Volatility Index (VIX) opened below the 16 mark and settled just above the 15 level as the closing bell rang [see also Low Volatility ETFdb Portfolio].
ETF Fun Fact Of The Day
The best performing themed strategy year-to-date is our 2012 ETFdb Portfolio; this strategy is up an impressive 15.22%.
Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.