ETF Preview: Broad Market ETFs Edge Higher; Emerging Markets, China Funds Soar

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Active broad-market exchange-traded funds in Thursday's regular session:

SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust ( SPY ): +0.41%, earlier hit 52-week high

iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index ( EEM ): +1.03%

iShares Russell 2000 Index ( IWM ): -0.21%, earlier hit new 52-week highs

PowerShares QQQ Trust, Series 1 ( QQQ ): +0.02%, with a new 52-week high

Market Vectors Gold Miners ( GDX ): +2.20%

Pre-Market Movers

XPP +5.1%

FXI +3.2%

EDC +2.1%

DXJ +1.2%

DUST +0.9%

Broad Market Indicators

Many broad-market exchange-traded funds, including SPY, IWM, IVV and others are higher, remaining at, or near record highs. Actively traded PowerShares QQQ ( QQQ ) was up 0.08%.

U.S. stock futures are pointing to a higher open, buoyed for a second day by comments from incoming Federal Reserve Chairperson Janet Yellen that she will continue with the Fed's stimulus policies until she sees firmer signs of U.S. economic recovery. Yellen was speaking Thursday during her confirmation hearing.

Power Play: Emerging Markets -

Emerging markets funds are outperforming the market this morning after incoming Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen signaled she wouldn't pull back on stimulus policies yet, triggering and increased appetite for riskier assets. China funds were particularly in focus amid an announcement of sweeping economic and social changes. Direxion Daily China Bull (YINN) is up 6.4%; Pro-shares Ultra FTSE China (XPP) is up 5%; Direxion Daily Emerging Markets (EDC) is up 2%.

Winners and Losers

Technology -

Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK), iShares Dow Jones US Technology ETF (IYW), iShares S&P North American Technology ETF (IGM) and iShares S&P North American Technology-Software Index (IGV) are quiet pre-market after a weaker session on Thursday.

Among semiconductor ETFs, SPDR S&P Semiconductor (XSD) and Semiconductor Sector Index Fund (SOXX), SPDR S&P International Technology Sector ETF (IPK) were also mostly weaker, but remain near the top of their 52-week range.

Among stocks, Innotrac (INOC) has agreed to be acquired by an affiliate of Sterling Partners for $8.20 per share in cash, a 25.5% premium over the Oct. 21 closing price, the last day before entering exclusive negotiations with Sterling Partners, and a 54.4% premium over the average closing price over the 90 days ended Nov. 14.

Financial -

Select Financial Sector SPDRs (XLF) is flat pre-bell after slipping 0.19% after-hours. The stock hit its highest level since September 2008 in Thursday trading. Direxion Daily Financial Bull 3X shares (FAS) is up 0.5%. Its bearish counterpart, FAZ is down 0.8%.

Among financial stocks, State-chartered bank holding company Rockville Financial Inc. (RCKB) and United Financial Bancorp, Inc. (UBNK), the holding company for United Bank, have entered into a definitive merger agreement in a stock-for-stock transaction valued at $369 million. Both stocks are halted pre-bell.

Energy -

Dow Jones U.S. Energy Fund (IYE) and Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE) are quiet pre-market, but are trading at their highest levels in five and a half years.

In sector news, U.S. Geothermal Inc. (HTM, GTH.TO), engaged in the renewable green energy business, reported late Thursday Q3 2013 net loss of $0.03 million, or nil per share, compared to a net loss of $0.77 million, or $0.01 per share, in the prior-year period. Revenues for the period totaled $5.76 million, up from $2.02 million in the same period last year.

Commodities -

Crude is ticking up 0.06%; United States Oil Fund (USO) is flat. Meanwhile, natural gas was also down 0.2%, and United States Natural Gas Fund (UNG) was down 0.39%.

Gold was down 0.2%, and SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) was down 0.3%. Silver was down 0.1%; iShares Silver Trust (SLV) is off 0.8% this morning.

Healthcare

Health Care SPDR (XLV), Vanguard Health Care ETF (VHT) and iShares Dow Jones US Healthcare (IYH) are flat pre-market. All were higher on Thursday and hit record highs. Biotech ETF iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (IBB) is unchanged.

Among stocks, Cell Therapeutics (CTIC) and Baxter International (BAX) have entered into an exclusive worldwide licensing agreement to develop and commercialize pacritinib. Pacritinib is a novel investigational JAK2/FLT3 inhibitor with activity against genetic mutations linked to myelofibrosis, leukemia and certain solid tumors. CTIC is up 36% pre-bell.

Consumer -

Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR (XLP); Vanguard Consumer Staples ETF (VDC) and iShares Dow Jones US Consumer Goods (IYK) were all higher Thursday and trading at record highs. They are unchanged pre-bell.

Among stocks, shares of The Men's Wearhouse, Inc. (MW) are now down 2.4% in pre-market trade, coming back from steep earlier losses, amid indications shareholders will push the company to complete a merger with clothing company Jos. A. Bank Clothiers, Inc. (JOSB).

The stock earlier fell as much as 11% to a pre-bell low of $41 after Jos. A terminated its $48 per share all-cash proposal to purchase the specialty retailer of men's suits.



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

Copyright (C) 2014 MTNewswires.com. All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.


This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: EEM , GDX , IWM , QQQ , SPY

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