Is a "Cubes Jr." exchange traded fund (ETF) in the making?

The Nasdaq Stock Market started a new index yesterday, the Nasdaq Q-50, which is made up of companies poised to enter into the Nasdaq-100 Index. The stocks within the new index are weighed by market capitalization, reports John Spence for MarketWatch. The launch of the Nasdaq Q-50 Index underscores the efforts of Nasdaq and other exchanges to grab a slice of the growing ETF pie by attracting trading volume and new listings.

The Nasdaq-100 Index is the tracking benchmark for one of the most heavily-traded ETFs, the PowerShares QQQ Trust (QQQQ), which was previously known as the Nasdaq-100 Trust. Now, traders commonly refer to the $21 billion QQQQ ETF as the "Cubes." The Cubes fell harder than the broad U.S. stock market, as measured by the S&P 500, during this summer’s credit-inspired drop. However, it’s snapped back higher during the recovery. Currently, QQQQ is up 24.3% year-to-date.

For full disclosure, some of Tom Lydon’s clients own QQQQ.

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