With the Nasdaq faltering again Tuesday, it might be hard for some investors to believe that things are not entirely gloom and doom in the technology sector.
Most of the gloom has come courtesy of once high-flying Internet and social media stocks. The PowerShares QQQ (NasdaqGM: QQQ) is off 5.5% over the past month, but the First Trust Dow Jones Internet Index Fund (NYSEArca: FDN) has been more than twice as bad. The Global X Social Media Index ETF (NasdaqGM: SOCL) has been more than three times worse than QQQ. [Social Media ETF Close to Bear Market]
Not all technology sector ETFs are wearing scarlet letters though. While not much too write home about, more conservatively-positioned tech ETFs, such as Technology Select Sector SPDR (NYSEArca: XLK) and the Vanguard Information Technology ETF (NYSEArca: VGT), have been sturdy in recent weeks, easily outpacing the Nasdaq Composite.
Another standout has been the First Trust NASDAQ Technology Dividend Index Fund (NasdaqGM: TDIV), which was sporting one-month gain of nearly 3% entering Tuesday’s session (TDIV is down 0.8% at this writing). A large part of the reason XLK, VGT and in particular TDIV have been sturdy as higher beta tech fare has withered is the ETFs’ allocations to the sector’s more mature names. [Old School Tech Names Rise Again]
Think Dow components Microsoft (NasdaqGS: MSFT), International Business Machines (NYSE: IBM), Intel (NasdaqGS: INTC) and Cisco (NasdaqGS: CSCO). Those are four of the 14 Dow stocks that are higher year-to-date. Those are TDIV’s four largest holdings, combining for a third of the ETF’s weight.
Allocations like those explain “why TDIV has the lowest volatility of the 36 tech ETFs and is about half as volatile as the super-jumpy SOCL,” writes Eric Balchunas for Bloomberg.