Energy exchange traded funds were Wednesday’s top-performing sector thanks to a rally in crude prices back above $101 a barrel and strength in Halliburton (NYSE: HAL) and other energy stocks.
Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund (NYSEArca: XLE) was up nearly 2% while Halliburton jumped more than 4% after an upgrade at Morgan Stanley. The energy ETF is up about 10% year to date.
U.S. Oil Fund (NYSEArca: USO) followed crude prices higher with a roughly 2% advance Wednesday.
Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund “has exhibited good leadership qualities so far this year,” said Tarquin Coe, technical analyst at Investors Intelligence, in a note to subscribers Wednesday.
He said the energy ETF made its high ahead of the market on March 31, compared with May 2 for the S&P 500, “and may now be doing the same with respect to the termination of the current correction.”
The fund “made a low on May 17 and then formed a base which is now confirmed with today’s rally. On the other hand, the S&P 500 continues to trail the XLE as it made a new low this morning,” Coe wrote.
Halliburton represents more than 3% of the energy ETF.