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May 1, 2015
Successful ETF Investing

Successful ETF Investing
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May 1, 2015
Weekly ETF Report

Behold the April Commodities Surge April is in the books and, for equities, it was another winning month added on to a winning year-to-date performance. The S&P 500 finished the month up 0.85%, but that was a bit deceptive, as the index sold off about 1% on April 30. That decline trimmed the bullish mood a bit, but still the S&P 500 is up 3.3% through the first four months of the year. Stocks in broad-based international markets are doing much better than their domestic counterparts. For example, the iShares MSCI EAFE Index (EFA) was up 3.65% in April, and year to date the benchmark international fund is up 9.32%. A really big region for equally big equity performance is China. The iShares China Large Cap (FXI) spiked 15.6% in April, and year to date the fund is up 23.3%. While the outperformance of international equities, and specifically China, vs. domestic stocks is something subscribers to my Successful ETF Investing newsletter have benefitted from all year, the real surprise action in the markets in April was in commodities. Both oil and gold stocks were up huge last month, and now we need to watch these trends to see if and/or when they might start really affecting other markets. In the oil patch, we saw the iPath S&P GSCI Crude Oil TR ETN (OIL) surge 24% during the month, as oil extricated itself from its multi-month plunge. Oil prices now are back above the 200-day moving average, a development that will […]

April 24, 2015
Successful ETF Investing

Successful ETF Investing
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April 24, 2015
Weekly ETF Report

The Numbers Don’t Lie Very few things in life are as irrefutable as numbers. Sure, statistics can be manipulated to support all sorts of claims (witness the political realm). But when it comes to pure numeric performance, well, the numbers don’t lie. This week, I ran some numbers on the performance of some of the biggest exchange-traded funds (ETFs) here in the United States vs. some of the biggest ETFs around the world. Admittedly, this is a cross section of ETFs, some of which I look at each day to get a quick read on the markets. Here are the top-five domestic ETF performers, year to date, that I monitor daily. TICKER Name 1MO% 3MO% YTD% QQQ PowerShares QQQ 2.42 6.02 7.06 MDY S&P MidCap 400 SPDRs 0.38 5.59 5.83 IWM iShares Russell 2000 Index 0.15 6.71 5.37 IJR iShares S&P SmallCap 600 Index -0.59 6.03 4.36 SPY S&P 500 SPDRs 1.45 3.35 3.07 As you can see, each has had solid performance this year, with the tech-heavy PowerShares QQQ (QQQ) leading the charge higher, up a strong 7.06%. I was happy about this situation, as I own QQQ in our Successful ETF Investing portfolio. I then ran the numbers on the big international ETFs that I screen on a daily basis. One look at this segment made me even happier. TICKER Name 1MO% 3MO% YTD% FXI iShares FTSE/Xinhua China 25 20.73 18.66 24.74 EWJ iShares MSCI Japan Index 3.47 15.92 18.19 EEB Claymore BNY BRIC 12.48 6.75 13.55 EEM iShares […]

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Why Commodities Surged in April

May 1, 2015

Behold the April Commodities Surge April is in the books and, for equities, it was another winning month added on to a winning year-to-date performance. The S&P 500 finished the month up 0.85%, but that was a bit deceptive, as the index sold off about 1% on April 30. That decline trimmed the bullish mood a bit, but still the S&P 500 is up 3.3% through the first four months of the year. Stocks in broad-based international markets are doing much better than their domestic counterparts. For example, the iShares MSCI EAFE Index (EFA) was up 3.65% in April, and year to date the benchmark international fund is up 9.32%. A really big region for equally big equity performance is China. The iShares China Large Cap (FXI) spiked 15.6% in April, and year to date the fund is up 23.3%. While the outperformance of international equities, and specifically China, vs. domestic stocks is something subscribers to my Successful ETF Investing newsletter have benefitted from all year, the real surprise action in the markets in April was in commodities. Both oil and gold stocks were up huge last month, and now we need to watch these trends to see if and/or when they might start...

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Investors have become complacent. Stocks are near all-time highs. Volatility is low. It's almost like investors are blind to the three coming catastrophes that can crash the market 30% or more in 2013:...
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abc
25%
def
25%
ghi
25%
jkl
25%
Name Ticker Date Buy Price Stop Price
number 1 abc 08/30/2009 19.74 17.74
number 2 def 10/13/2009 19.72 17.72
number 3 ghi 05/15/2009 19.35 17.35
number 4 jkl 03/30/2009 20.08 17.08