After outperforming other sectors since the beginning of the year, financials have given up most of the gains and are now even with the broader market. State Street’s Financial Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLF) was up 20% as late as the beginning of April before beginning a 6-week slide. XLF is now up only 3% year-to-date compared to a 2% gain for the broader market.
What’s doing worse than the overall stock market? Try financials. Since the beginning of 2011, the S&P 500 is flat having given up the year’s gains in the recent 6-week downturn.
Agri-giant Monsanto’s stock price has lead materials stocks to underperform the broader market. Monsanto is down 11% since August 27 while the SPDR S&P 500 (SPY)was essentially flat over the same period.
After closing at a new multi-year low on Monday, stocks rallied through the rest of the week on the back of reassuring remarks from bankers and administration officials. The broad market ETF SPDR S&P 500 (SPY) closed the week at $76.09, up 12% from Monday’s low of $68.11.
With regulators and law makers bogged down in debate on how to deal with the credit crisis and worsening economy, financial stocks have gyrated wildly since the beginning of year.
After the Federal Government threw a lifeline to Citigroup (C) at the beginning of last week, the large cap financials have recovered nicely. The Financial Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLF) is up 35% from the close on November 20. Over the same time period, the S&P 500 (SPY) is up 19%.
The day after we posted Looking for a Bottom? Start with Sectors, the market tested a new 52-week low and sector performance was telling.
With the US equity market recently hitting a new 52-week low, investors are still waiting for the market to bottom out.
There are close to 200 sector, sub-sector and industry focused ETFs in the ETF MarketPro Directory.