The recent retrenchment in biotechnology, Internet and social media stocks has been a thorn in the side of the PowerShares QQQ (NasdaqGM: QQQ). The NASDAQ-100 tracking ETF is off almost 4% since the start of March and now resides as the sixth-largest U.S. ETF after being number four just two weeks ago.
With an earnings deluge looming this week, QQQ has an opportunity to right its course. That effort starts today with Netflix (NasdaqGS: NFLX) reporting after the bell, but Netflix is just 0.52% of QQQ’s weight and merely the ETF’s tenth-largest consumer discretionary holding. [Netflix not Pivotal to ETFs]
Tuesday is a more critical day on QQQ’s earnings docket with Gilead Sciences (NasdaqGS: GILD), the ETF’s tenth-largest holding reporting. Gilead is joined by two other biotech stocks reporting Tuesday, including Amgen (NasdaqGS: AMGN), the ETF’s second-largest health care holding. Comcast (NasdaqGS: CMCSA), QQQ’s second-largest consumer discretionary holding, also reports Tuesday. All told, about 9% of QQQ’s weight delivers earnings results Tuesday, according to NASDAQ OMX Global Indexes.
To say Wednesday is a big deal for QQQ is an understatement. Roughly 23% of the ETF’s weight, or 11 companies, steps into the earnings confessional that day and it is not a stretch to say most eyes will be on Apple (NasdaqGS: AAPL) and Facebook (NasdaqGS: FB). Those are QQQ’s largest and ninth-largest holdings respectively.
Although Apple and Facebook earnings reports are usually accompanied by plenty of fanfare, investors should not gloss over Qualcomm (NasdaqGS: QCOM). Qualcomm is QQQ’s sixth-largest holding with a weight of almost 3.5% and is among the old tech stocks that have propped the sector up as Internet and social media names have wilted. [Another Tech ETF With an Old School Bias]