The Nasdaq Composite rose 1% on Friday on the back of a 2% advance in shares of Apple (NasdaqGS: AAPL), which is under pressure to return more of its nearly $140 billion pile of cash to shareholders.
SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSEArca: SPY) was on track for a sixth straight week of gains in afternoon trading Friday with many New York traders leaving their desks early as a massive snowstorm started to pound the Northeast.
The S&P 500 was set for a weekly gain of 0.3% at last check Friday but the other major U.S. stock benchmarks were mixed. The Dow was poised for a loss of 0.2% for the week while the Nasdaq added 0.5%.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq is close to a 12-year high, according to Reuters. The Fidelity Nasdaq Composite Index ETF (NasdaqGM: ONEQ), which was launched in 2003, is near its lifetime high as well.
Also Friday, the S&P 500 climbed to its highest level since 2007.
“Confidence is emerging here,” James Paulsen, chief investment strategist at Wells Capital Management, told Bloomberg. “People are finally deciding that this looks more like a sustainable recovery.”
The top five unleveraged ETFs this week were Market Vectors Vietnam (NYSEArca: VNM), Market Vectors Egypt (NYSEArca: EGPT) and iShares DJ US Oil & Gas Exploration & Production (NYSEArca: IEO) with gains of at least 2%.
Conversely, the bottom five unleveraged ETFs this week were iShares MSCI Italy (NYSEArca: EWI), Market Vectors India Small-Cap (NYSEArca: SCIF) and iShares MSCI France (NYSEArca: EWQ) with setbacks of 5% or more. [Italy, Spain ETFs Lead Europe Lower on Political Uncertainty]
In next week’s economic data, look for reports on retail sales, import and export prices, industrial production and consumer sentiment.
Fidelity Nasdaq Composite Index ETF
Full disclosure: Tom Lydon’s clients own SPY and AAPL.