Investors were in for a lackluster trading session today, as stocks wavered in a narrow range on cautions of continuing fiscal cliff talks. Though no major economic reports were released today, many paid close attention to President Obama’s comments in a television interview today, where he stated that the Republican’s counter offer of $800 billion in revenues through tax reforms and $2.2 trillion in net savings was out of balance. He did, however, express his continuing optimism for the split Congress to come together on a viable solution [see also 101 ETF Lessons Every Financial Advisor Should Learn].
After bobbing in and out of negative territory throughout the day, U.S. equities closed in the red once again. Tech-heavy Nasdaq (QQQ) came in at the bottom of the barrel, posting a 0.18% loss. The S&P 500 (SPY) slid 0.17% while the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DIA) logged in a 0.11% loss. In Europe, stocks were mostly higher, with the Stoxx Europe 600 inching up a mere 0.1%. Asian equities were mostly lower, but pared losses after the Reserve Bank of Australia lowered its benchmark interest rate to 3%. Japan’s Nikkei Stock Average shed 0.3%, while Australia’s S&P ASX 200 slipped 0.6%.
Bond ETF Roundup
U.S. Treasury prices were slightly higher today, with the yield on the 10-year note slipping a mere basis point. In a commentary released today, legendary Bond King Bill Gross revealed that he will be looking outside of traditional Treasury bonds and U.S. corporate debt for yield. Instead, he is focusing on high-quality municipal bonds and U.S. inflation-protected bonds.
Commodity ETF Roundup
Across the board, commodities were mostly lower on the day with oil slipping for a second day in a row. Gold futures also hit fresh 1-month lows, while soybeans fell after touching 3-week highs. Copper, however, caught fire, rallying to a 6-week peak [see also Gold And The Fiscal Cliff].
ETF Chart Of The Day #1: KBE
The State Street SPDR Bank ETF (KBE, A) was one of the worst performers today, shedding 0.88% during the session. Although the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. reported an overall bank revenue increase of 3%, bank shares still fell. KBE tumbled until late afternoon hours as trading volumes peaked, only turn slightly higher at the end of the day. The fund eventually settled at $22.98 a share [see also Financials Free ETFdb Portfolio].
ETF Chart Of The Day #2: AUD
The PIMCO Australia Bond Index Fund (AUD, B+) was one of the best performers of the day, gaining 1.17% during the session. Following the Reserve Bank of Australia’s announcement that it lowered its benchmark interest rate to 3%, this ETF gapped significantly higher at the open. AUD popped slightly higher, eventually settling near its high of $105.77 a share [see also Australia ETFs: 9 Ways To Play].
ETF Fun Fact Of The Day
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Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.