Mid-Day ETF Update: ETFs, Stocks Pause Gains Ahead of Earnings Season


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

SPDR S&P 500 ( SPY ): -0.44%

iShares Russell 2000 Index ( IWM ): -1.30%

iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index ( EEM ): -0.06%

PowerShares QQQ Trust, Series 1 ( QQQ ): -0.37%

iPath S&P 500 VIX ST Futures ETN ( VXX ): +2.06%

Broad Market Indicators

Broad-market exchange-traded funds, including SPY, IWM and IVV were in negative territory, but some still touched or were near record or multi-year highs. Actively traded PowerShares QQQ ( QQQ ) was down 0.37%, with a new 13-year high.

U.S. stocks were also in the red at session's half, ahead of the start of the Q2 earnings season, with all three major indices in negative territory. Markets seemed to be taking a breather following a three-session winning streak for both the Dow Industrials and S&P 500, as investors are now digesting the June U.S. jobs report released last Thursday. The beginning of the earnings season is usually signaled by Alcoa's (AA) earnings report, which will be released in Tuesday's after hours session.

Power Play: 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) edged lower, but most hit record or multi-year highs. SPDR S&P International Technology Sector ETF (IPK) was flat.

Among semiconductor ETFs, SPDR S&P Semiconductor (XSD) and Semiconductor Sector Index Fund (SOXX) were lower but were also near all-time highs.

In corporate news, Camtek Ltd. (CAMT) was up some 47% after the optical-inspection company announced the launch of its next-generation semiconductor inspection and metrology platform, already receiving orders from several device manufacturers. The new Eagle product line will have it formal launch tomorrow at the Semicon West tradeshow in San Francisco. It was designed to support the growing Advanced Packaging market with software and hardware capable of delivering 2-D and 3-D inspection and metrology capabilities on the same platform. Several chip-makers have placed early orders for the new product line, according to Ramy Langer, CAMT's head of its semiconductor division, calling that "a vote of confidence in our technology capabilities."

Winners and Losers


Select Financial Sector SPDRs (XLF) was down 0.56%, near its five-year high. Direxion Daily Financial Bull 3X shares (FAS) was down 1.64%. Its bearish counterpart, FAZ, was up1.4%.

Among sector news, HSBC Holdings plc (HSBC) was down 0.85% following a report on Bloomberg that the global banking and financial services is intent on closing its Libyan operations as it failed to pass a series of criteria drafted by the firm. HSBC has already sold off several units around the world including various Latin American businesses, its Japanese private bank and a Russian retail bank.


Dow Jones U.S. Energy Fund (IYE) was down 0.82% while Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE) was down 0.84%.

In sector news, Rex Energy (REXX) was down 3.32% after it said its production has been constrained due to delays in the installation of additional field compression. REXX expects production from its Butler Operated Area to return to expected levels once the field compression has been added. It also estimates its Q2 2014 production to be approximately 128 MMcfe/d. In addition, the company expects its Q2 2014 natural gas price differentials, including the effects of natural gas basis differential hedges, to be approximately $0.50 - $0.70 below Henry Hub index prices. The company is reaffirming its full year 2014 production guidance of 143 MMcfe/d - 149 MMcfe/d.


Crude was down 0.68%; United States Oil Fund (USO) was down 0.42%. Natural gas was down 3.94% and United States Natural Gas Fund (UNG) was down 3.20%.

Gold was down 0.30% and silver was down 0.55%. Among rare metal funds, SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) was down 0.27% and iShares Silver Trust (SLV) was down 0.79%.


Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR (XLP), iShares Dow Jones US Consumer Goods (IYK), and Vanguard Consumer Staples ETF (VDC) were in positive territory, near multi-year highs.

Among stocks, Kandi Technologies Group (KNDI) was up 6.35% after saying a joint venture company that makes Kandi Brand electric vehicles has received a subsidy of $31.8 million from the Chinese government. The vehicle maker said the joint venture with Shanghai Maple Guorun Automobile Co, a Geely Automobile subsidiary, received the subsidy for sales of over 3,000 electric vehicles between June and December 2013 and for the sales of over 1,000 EVs in Q1. Kandi said the city of Hangzhou, where it launched its short-term EV rental and long-term EV leasing program, is expected to announce its local subsidy policy for new energy vehicles in the near future.

Health Care

Health Care SPDR (XLV), iShares Dow Jones US Healthcare (IYH) and Vanguard Health Care ETF (VHT) were weaker, but still near record highs. Biotech ETF iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (IBB) was down 2%.

In corporate news, Endo International (ENDP) and BioDelivery Sciences International (BDSI) said a phase 3 trial of BEMA buprenorphine to manage pain severe enough to require daily, around-the-clock, long-term opioid treatment met its primary efficacy endpoint. The treatment is for patients for which alternative treatment options are inadequate in both patients who are opioid-naive and opioid-experienced. The drug showed significantly improved chronic pain relief compared to placebo, the companies said. Additional secondary endpoints were supportive of the efficacy of BEMA buprenorphine compared to placebo. A meeting with the U.S. Food Administration, prior to filing the new drug application, is planned for July.

Biodelivery Sciences CEO Mark Sirgo said the locking of the database for the opioid-experienced study has triggered a $10 million milestone payment from Endo under the licensing agreement.

BDSI shares were up 11% to a record high while ENDP shares were down 2.27%.

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: SPY , IWM , EEM , QQQ , VXX

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