More bad price action out of the biotechnology sector Thursday and that underscores the precarious technical conditions being faced some exchange traded funds that were beloved just several weeks ago.
Here is a brief recap of just how bad biotech stocks and ETFs have been since the end of February: Entering Thursday’s session, the BEST of the five biotech ETFs since the end of February has been the First Trust NYSE Arca Biotechnology Index Fund (NYSEArca: FBT) with a loss in excess of 8%. [New High ETFs Paint Picture of Skittish Market]
And this factoid highlights just how poorly the major biotech ETFs are acting Thursday. The PowerShares Dynamic Biotechnology & Genome Portfolio (NYSEArca: PBE) is the best performer of the five, down 5.2%.
The iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF (NasdaqGM: IBB), the largest biotech ETF by assets, is lower by 5.5% on volume that is nearly a third above the ETF’s daily average. IBB is flirting with a close below $222, something it has not done since December 2013. [Biotech ETFs Flirt With Trouble]
There is talk that IBB is forming an ominous Eifel Tower technical pattern, which include washout selling that would erase much of the ETF’s previous rally. IBB was one of the top-10 non-leveraged sector ETFs in each of the past three years.
As for the equal weight SPDR S&P Biotech ETF (NYSEArca: XBI), the second-largest biotech ETF behind IBB, that fund is down 6% today on heavy volume and the technical situation is not encouraging.