U.S. equities got off to a strong start this week with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 logging in record closes. Though trading was relatively light, investors turned their attention to China’s GDP figures; the nation’s annual economic growth slowed to 7.5% in the second quarter from 7.7%. In other economic news, retail sales rose just 0.4% in June, greatly missing expectations of a 0.8% uptick. Meanwhile, New York State’s manufacturing sector grew 9.46 in July from 7.84 in June [see The Cheapest ETF for Every Investment Objective].
Despite a light trading session, all three major U.S. equity indexes rose to close in positive territory. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF (DIA, A) gained 0.30%, after its underlying index traded within 60 points from its all-time high. The S&P 500 ETF (SPY, A) traded 0.39% higher, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq ETF (QQQ, B+) gained 0.20%.
In Europe, markets were broadly higher; the Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.4%. Meanwhile, China’s Shanghai Composite rose 1.0% after China’s GDP came in at 7.5%, in line with analyst expectations. Japanese markets were closed for a holiday.
Bond ETF Roundup
U.S. Treasuries traded higher today on weaker-than-expected retail sales data. Yields on 10-year notes fell 3 basis points, while 30-year bonds and 5-year note yields fell 1 and 3 basis points, respectfully [see also Seven Simple & Cheap ETF Model Portfolios].
Crude oil futures traded higher today, settling back above $106 a barrel, as investors weighed Chinese GDP data and the July New York manufacturing report. In other energy trading, natural gas ended slightly higher following earlier losses while gasoline slipped 0.5%. Meanwhile, gold futures traded slightly higher, settling at $1,281.80 an ounce.
ETF Chart Of The Day #1: (XLU)
The Utilities Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLU, A) was one of the best performers today, gaining 1.63% during the session. Utilities shares were among today’s top performers, allowing this ETF to rally throughout the first three hours of trading. XLU eventually settled at $39.27 a share [see High Tech ETFdb Portfolio].
ETF Chart Of The Day #2: (EWZ)
The MSCI Brazil Capped ETF (EWZ, A-) also posted a strong performance today, gaining 2.81% during the session. After Petroleo Brasileiro (PBR) shares jumped more than 2.5% today, this ETF gapped slightly higher at the open. EWZ traded higher throughout the day, eventually settling at $43.48 a share [see BRIC-or-Bust ETFdb Portfolio].
ETF Fun Fact Of The Day
The best-performing regional strategy over the trailing 1-year period has been the Global Titans ETFdb Portfolio, which has gained 19.99%.
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Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.