In a week marked by geopolitical flare-ups, U.S. stocks eked out gains on Friday to help the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average close at fresh record highs. The S&P 500 is now up 6.2% year-to-date.
Although it closed modestly lower Friday, the PowerShares QQQ (NasdaqGM: QQQ), the NASDAQ-100 tracking ETF, still resides around its highest levels since the third quarter of 2000.
The aforementioned geopolitical tensions played a pivotal in elevating some ETFs to this week’s most searched list. The iShares Silver Trust (NYSEArca: SLV) closed higher Friday, extending its gains for the week to 6.1% and helping the largest silver make its first appearance on the most searched list in multiple months.
However, as has been seen in the past when silver soars, the PureFunds ISE Junior Silver Small Cap Miners/Explorers ETF (NYSEArca: SILJ) was the real story. This is how strong SILJ was this week: The ETF was able to absorb a 2.7% hit Friday and still finish the week higher by 11.4%. That performance stoked enough traffic toward to SILJ that the fund was the most searched ETF on ETF Trends this week. [Silver Miners ETF Sparkles]
Not surprisingly, the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSEArca: GDX) and the Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF (NYSEArca: GDXJ) also make appearances on this week’s most searched list. Traders took profits in GDXJ in significant fashion on Friday, sending the ETF lower by 4.3%, but it still finished the week up 4.5%. On a related note, the Direxion Daily Gold Miners Bull 3X Shares (NYSEArca: NUGT) was easily the most searched leveraged product for the week. [Miners Poised for Another Rally]
Although risk appetite was far from muted, at least as far the aforementioned ETFs are concerned, plenty of investors were seen evaluating more conservative, income-generating fare.
With high-yield stocks still a favored destination for many investors, the RevenueShares Ultra Dividend Fund (NYSEArca: RDIV) and the Vanguard High Dividend Yield ETF (NYSEArca: VYM) each found their way onto this week’s most searched list.
By wide margins, the most searched international ETFs are those focusing on Canada and World Cup host Brazil. Soaring energy and mining stocks have propelled the iShares MSCI Canada ETF (NYSEArca: EWC) to a year-to-date gain that is nearly 400 basis points superior to that of the S&P 500. [Canadian Dollar ETF Soars]
Other sector funds that increased search momentum include the SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Exploration & Production ETF (NYSEArca: XOP), Fidelity MSCI Energy Index ETF (NYSEArca: FENY) and the First Trust NASDAQ Clean Edge Green Energy Index Fund (NasdaqGM: QCLN). QCLN’s status as a de facto Elon Musk ETF sent the fund higher by 5.4% on the week.
Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF
Tom Lydon’s clients own shares of QQQ, SLV and SCHD.