Financial services exchange traded funds have spent ample time in the limelight this year, mostly in positive fashion. However, the Financial Select Sector SPDR (NYSEArca: XLF), the largest sector ETF of any stripe, has lost 0.7% over the past three month, making it the only one of the nine SPDRs that has traded lower over that time.
From a technical perspective, XLF has traded in a narrow range going back to July as the ETF has struggled to earnestly break through $21. However, the fund has on multiple occasions, found support just below $20 and its most recent low is higher than the previous, a bullish sign. [Pullback Looms for Big Bank ETF]
On a historical basis, there are better sector buys in November, namely cyclical ETFs such as consumer discretionary, industrials and materials funds, but a big leveraged bank ETF may be offering opportunity for active, adventurous traders. [Industrial ETFs: November Strong]
The Direxion Daily Financial Bull 3X Shares (NYSEArca: FAS) is that play. FAS attempts to deliver three times the daily performance of the Russell Financial Services Index, which is not XLF’s underlying index. Still, FAS and its bearish cousin, the Direxion Daily Financial Bear 3X Shares (NYSEArca: FAZ), are almost proxies for adventurous traders stalking bank stocks. [A FAS/FAZ Debte]
“Lower volume during a pullback is bullish because it indicates the sellers are staying away while the buyers are merely taking a rest. Additionally, there is new support from the prior downtrend line (prior resistance always becomes new support after resistance is broken),” said Deron Wagner of Morpheus Trading Group regarding FAS.