To help investors keep up with the markets, we present our ETF Scorecard. The Scorecard takes a step back and looks at how various asset classes across the globe are performing. The weekly performance is from last Friday’s open to this week Thursday’s close.
- The U.S. markets are starting to show some weakness again this week.
- Major foreign markets, including developed and emerging markets, are mixed for the week.
- During the FOMC statement this past Wednesday, interest rates remained the same (0.25% to 0.50%). This was no surprise given the dovish tones from previous Janet Yellen speeches.
- The estimated quarter-over-quarter real GDP released on Thursday was worse than expected at 0.5% annualized versus the consensus of 0.7%.
- Month-over-month core durable goods orders came in worse than expected on Tuesday at -0.2% versus the consensus of 0.5%. This is largely due to the slowdown in automotive industry sales. Consumer confidence also slipped on Tuesday as the figure came in at 94.2, less than the expected 96.
- On Thursday, the Bank of Japan held its interest rate press conference. During the conference, no additional stimulus was announced. This sent Japanese equities down and the Japanese yen higher. Governor Kuroda hinted that he will revisit the possibility of more stimulus after the effects of QE and negative interest rates become more apparent.
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Risk Appetite Review
- The overall market as measured by the S&P 500 ETF (SPY ) was slightly down at a 0.55% decrease. What’s interesting is that the high-beta, low-volatility and equal-weighted S&P 500 ETFs were all up slightly for the week.
- The best performer out of these four ETFs is the low-volatility ETF (SPLV ), which is up 0.68% for the week.
Major Index Review
- All major indexes are down for the week with the exception of the Russell 2000 (IWM ), which is up 0.46%. IWM is also the best performer for the rolling month, having increased 5.65%.
Foreign Equity Review
- Major foreign tracking ETFs are showing mixed results for the week, with the extremes being Brazil (EWZ ) and Japan (EWJ ) ETFs.
- Brazil (EWZ ) is up 5.25% for the week and 10.61% for the rolling month, representing the largest increase out of the foreign equity ETFs.
- Japan (EWJ ) is the worst performer for the week and rolling month. The ETF is down 5.57% for the week and is flat for the month at a slight 0.09% increase. As mentioned earlier, this is due to the lack of more stimulus action from the Bank of Japan.
- Commodities are showing mixed results this week with oil (USO ) in the lead as it continues its rally. It is the top-performing commodity for the week, up 4.37%.
- Natural gas (UNG ) saw a huge drop of 7.02% this week after being the top performer last week.
- Silver (SLV ) is making its way to catching up with gold. The metal is up 15.02% for the rolling month.
- Copper (JJC ) is the worst performer for the rolling month, down 0.5%.
- The U.S. dollar (UUP ) kept its downtrend this week; it is down 1.34%. It’s also the worst performer for the rolling month with a decrease of 2.37%. This is due to the lack of interest rate increase and dovish tone by the Fed.
- The worst-performing currency this week is the Australian dollar (FXA ) with a decrease of 1.39%. This is partly due to the CPI quarter-over-quarter decrease of 0.2% reported on Tuesday rather than the expected 0.3% increase.
- The Japanese yen (FXY ) is up 3.04% this week and 4.86% for the rolling month, outperforming all other major currency ETFs. Again, this is due to the lack of further stimulus from the BoJ.
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Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.