ETF Trends
ETF Trends

There are hundreds of exchange traded funds (ETFs) available these days. They come in all different shapes and sizes, but there are six that every investors should have memorized.

Ron Rowland for JutiaGroup lists these six ETFs that you must get to know. Rowland’s caveat is that he isn’t saying buy them right now. But know them. They’re among the largest and most liquid ones on the market today:

  • SPDR S&P 500 (SPY): up 12.6% year-to-date; gives instant access to the S&P 500, an index of the 500 largest domestic stocks covering all industry sectors. This ETF was the first ETF, introduced in 1993, and is referred to as the “grandfather” of funds.

  • PowerShares QQQ (QQQQ): up 34.8% year-to-date; viewed as a large-cap technology benchamark, this ETF tracks the Nasdaq 100 is a sub-set of the Composite, consisting of the 100 largest non-financial stocks in the index. Exposure to real estate, banks and insurance companies is not available in this fund.

  • Diamonds Trust Series 1 (DIA): up 7.6% year-to-date; a 30-stock index that tracks Dow Jones Industrial Average, an index of the largest U.S. blue chip stocks. DIA excludes some key sectors like transportation and utilities. Despite criticisms of the Dow (it’s too narrow, it excludes certain key sectors), it does give access to mega-caps.

  • iShares Russell 2000 Index (IWM): up 17% year-to-date; the Russell 2000 is an index of the 2,000 smallest companies ranked by U.S. market value. Small-caps often lead the way in a recovery, too. IWM can be a good way to hold hundreds of these small companies in one fund.