Despite some rather positive economic data, Wall Street remained pessimistic about the seemingly never-ending fiscal cliff negotiations. Third-quarter GDP was revised to 3.1%, up from 2.7%, while second-quarter growth was recorded at 1.3%. Existing home sales in November jumped 5.9% from the previous month, bucking economists’ expectations of a 2.3% increase. The Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank’s index of business activity for December popped to 8.1 from November’s 120.7 reading. The stalemate in Washington, however, put a damper on these positive reports [see also 101 High Yielding ETFs For Every Dividend Investor].
Somewhat boosted by House Speaker John Boehner’s continuing promise of Congress coming to a viable cliff solution, all three major U.S. equity indexes managed to claw their way into positive territory. The S&P 500 (SPY) came out on top, gaining 0.55% during the session. Tech-heavy Nasdaq (QQQ) inched 0.20% higher, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DIA) added 0.45%. In Europe, markets closed flat after an unchanged reading on U.K. retail sales. Asian equities were mostly higher after the Bank of Japan announced its new stimulus measures, adding another $119 billion to its asset-purchase program. Japan’s Nikkei Stock Average fell 1.2%, while China’s Shanghai Composite gained 0.3%.
Bond ETF Roundup
U.S. Treasury prices rose again today as investors weighed the latest developments (or lack thereof) in Washington. Yields on 5 and 10-year notes slipped 1 basis point, while 30-year bond yields remained unchanged at 2.99%.
Commodity ETF Roundup
Commodities were mostly lower today, with precious metals, namely silver, tumbling once again on budget talks. Natural gas futures, however, jumped over 4% after the Energy Department’s Energy Information Administration supplies contracted by 82 billion cubic feet [see also 13 High-Yielding Commodities For 2013].
ETF Chart Of The Day #1: XLF
The State Street Financial Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLF, A) was one of the best performers today, gaining 1.40% during the session. Led by a strong performance in financial shares, this ETF gapped slightly higher at the open. XLF pushed higher throughout the day, eventually settling at its high of $16.70 a share [see also Financials Free ETFdb Portfolio].
ETF Chart Of The Day #2: WITE
The ETF Securities Physical White Metal Basket Shares (WITE, B) was one of the worst performers today, shedding an abysmal 3.40% during the session. Silver and platinum futures took a free fall today, forcing this ETF to gap significantly lower at the open. Trading volumes remained relatively low for the remainder of the day, though WITE managed to inch lower to close at $50.25 a share [see also Mining Boom ETFdb Portfolio].
ETF Fun Fact Of The Day
The best performing regional strategy from the trailing 13-week period is our Asia-Centric ETFdb Portfolio; this strategy is up an impressive 5.16%.
Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.