Many investors are turning to traditional defensive sectors and dividend exchange traded funds to weather the volatility in the stock market.
SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSEArca: SPY) fell 6.6% last week on worries Greece will default and accelerate the European debt crisis.
The S&P 500 has suffered through seven weekly declines in excess of 2% this year, which is 20% more than normal on an annualized basis, says Sam Stovall, equity strategist at Standard & Poor’s.
Since the end of 1995, the blue-chip index has suffered 133 weeks in which it shed 2% or more. Eight of the sectors in the S&P 500 have seen more weekly declines of at least 2% during this period. However, utilities and consumer staples have seen fewer.
Utilities, consumer staples and healthcare stocks are considered defensive sectors. [ETF Flows Suggest Defensive Sector Rotation]