Markets

Riots In Spain, Greece Sink ETFs; Treasuries Rise

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ETF investors dumped high-growth, speculative funds and dove into safe haven Treasuries Wednesday as anti-austerity uprisings in Greece and Spain suggested that more central bank stimulus cannot control Europe's financial crisis.

IShares MSCI Spain Index ( EWP ) gapped down 3.10%, leading the global sell-off. It's given back all of the prior week's gains. But it's still trading above its 50- and 200-day moving averages, which shows the uptrend remains intact. Spanish bond yields rose to 6% for the first time in months. Protesters contend the government's tax hikes and spending cuts will only deepen the recession and 25% unemployment rate. The country is set to announce its 2013 budget Thursday.

"The actions of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy will determine the strength of the current sell-off as any perceived delays will have that uncertainty weight continue to determine direction," wrote Andrew Taylor, a market strategist at GFT. "Any revolt by its people will make the transition of a country reliant upon bailouts very difficult and uncertain. The bigger the noise, the bigger the safe-haven trading plays."

Global X FTSE Greece 20 ( GREK ) fell for a third day straight, sliding 0.34%. A protest in Athens drew 60,000 people.

IShares MSCI EAFE Index ( EFA ), tracking developed foreign markets, fell 0.99%.

IShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index ( EEM ) shed 0.46%.IShares FTSE China ( FXI ), off 0.94%, broke below its 50-day moving average, confirming it's back in a downtrend. Its 50-day line trade was already trading below its 200-day line, which is very bearish.

"Stimulus is not working on markets because they know more investment and debt (are) not the answer but the problem," said Carl Delfeld, founder of PacificRimConfidential.com. "China already has excess industrial capacity and its manufacturing index is down eight months in a row."

Treasury ETFs,Vanguard Extended Duration (EDV) rose 1.74% and Pimco 25+ Year Zero Coupon U.S.Treasury Index (ZROZ) gained 1.58%.

"Investors are beginning to realize that perhaps stocks have been running higher than the fundamentals dictate, and are now cashing out of long positions to increase their cash positions," Carlos Guillen, an analyst at WStreet.com in New York City, wrote.

Where To Invest Now

In his latest note to clients, Carl Delfeld recommended buyingMarket Vectors Russia ETF (RSX) because of its low price-to-earnings ratio of 5.7. It lost 1.52% Wednesday. It's returned 8.86% year to date and 7.07% in the past year vs. 7.89% and 11% for EFA.

"Russia, as a Pacific Rim nation, is stepping up its trade and investment outreach to countries such as China, South Korea and Japan," Delfeld wrote. "In fact, over the past five years, bilateral trade with Japan has already doubled and trade with South Korea has tripled. Russia's trade with China is now 60% higher than with Germany."

Follow Trang Ho on Twitter @TrangHoETFs .

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


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

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