In late August we highlighted bullish call buyers in homebuilder exchange traded fund options, notably in SPDR S&P Homebuilders (NYSEArca: XHB). [Builder ETF Options]
Following a volatile path, the sector is currently trading higher than where this activity originally began, but the price action has been anything but unidirectional along the way.
With XHB challenging its 200 day moving average, a level that it has failed to pierce and maintain for at least the past four months, we saw call activity on Friday in a related ETF, iShares DJ U.S. Home Construction (NYSEArca: ITB) and trading volume in the ETF that exceeds its typical average daily level.
ITB is also approaching its 200 day moving average ($11.82 a share) and closed on Friday at $11.20. Top holdings in ITB are mostly pure play homebuilders including NVR (NYSE: NVR), D.R. Horton (NYSE: DHI), Lennar (NYSE: LEN), Toll Brothers (NYSE: TOL) and PulteGroup (NYSE: PHM), whereas XHB’s top weightings also include providers of homebuilding materials as well as retailers that sell furniture and other home related items in addition to homebuilders themselves.
Top holdings in XHB are currently Select Comfort (NasdaqGS:SCSS), Ryland (NYSE: RYL), MDC (NYSE: MDC), Masco (NYSE: MAS) and KB Home (NYSE: KBH).
Year to date, XHB is leading the space in terms of overall performance, down 5.17% while ITB has lost 15.01%. A third related ETF, PowerShares Dynamic Building and Construction (NYSEArca: PKB), has lost 13.08% during this timeframe.
iShares DJ U.S. Home Construction