As the U.S. government gears up to release a round of funding dedicated to broadband, the telecommunications sector and related exchange traded funds (ETFs) wait with bated breath for any positive impact.

The government will award $4 billion in loans and grants to various telecommunications firms in an attempt to expand broadband access to underserved areas across the United States, reports John Poirier of Reuters.  This is just one part of the massive $787 fiscal stimulus passed earlier this year.

President Barack Obama and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) have made broadband access a top priority, stating that it’s vital to be on top of the technology revolution in order for the nation to remain competitive in an increasingly global marketplace.The funding will be made available to both the public and private sectors.

Many suggest that the FCC should place net-neutrality rules within the total broadband plan. Such rules would prevent broadband providers from blocking or slowing consumers’ access to legal Web content, states Grant Gross of Computer World. Net neutrality refers to a network that has no restrictions on content, sites, equipment and types of communication.

Some ETFs that could be affected as more Americans go online include:

  • iShares Dow Jones U.S. Telecom (IYZ): up 9.9% year-to-date

  • Broadband HOLDRs (BDH): up 43.3% year-to-date

For more stories on telecommunications, visit our telecommunication category.

Kevin Grewal contributed to this article.

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.