Domestic equity markets got off to an encouraging start, only to give into profit-taking pressures in the final hours of trading. Major indexes ended up in red territory as escalating worries that Greece would exit the euro weighted on investors’ confidence. On Wall Street, the S&P 500 Index came out on top, clinching a gain of 0.05% on the day, while the Nasdaq settled in red territory, shedding 0.29% on the day. Gold and oil finished lower as well; futures prices for these commodities settled near $1,565 an ounce and $91.40 a barrel respectively [see also 3 ETF Trading Tips You Are Missing].
Stocks kicked off the day with a rally as investors cheered on the latest housing market data. Existing home sales in April came in at 4.62 million, inching past analyst estimates of 4.60 million as well as the previous month’s reading of 4.47 million. On the international front, the British pound lost ground versus the U.S. dollar in the currency market as the latest U.K. CPI reading came in lower-than-expected; inflation came in at 3%, falling short of the 3.1% analyst estimate as well as the previous reading of 3.5% [see also FXE Is Oversold: Trade The Bounce].
The Barclays iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN (VXX) was one of the best performers, gaining 3.57% on the day. The Volatility Index sank as the opening bell rang, touching a low of 19.98 before lunch time; surprisingly, the VIX managed to turn higher and settle back above the 22 level as the trading session drew to a close, reminding investors of the lurking uncertainties [see BTAL: A Different (And Effective) Low Volatility ETF].
The iShares MSCI Brazil Index Fund (EWZ) was one of the worst performers, shedding 2.78% on the day. This ETF soared higher in the first two hours of trading, managing to extend its gains from yesterday and hit a high of $53 a share. Profit taking pressures quickly knocked it back down to its opening price however, and selling forces prevailed in the end as EWZ closed in red territory right above $51 a share [see also India Bull Or Bear? ETFs To Play].
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