Investors Still Writing Prescriptions for Health Care ETFs

The Health Care Select Sector SPDR (NYSEArca: XLV), the largest health care exchange traded fund by assets, is up 9.7% this year, a performance that places XLV in the upper echelon of the nine sector SPDRs.

XLV is the midst of a three-year run that has seen the ETF surge 112% compared to 83.8% for the S&P 500, but even with that lengthy, stellar run for the health care sector, investors are not being shy about betting on more upside for XLV and rival ETFs. [Getting Tactical With Sector ETFs]

XLV pulled in $843 million in new assets for the week ending Aug. 8, reports Joseph Ciolli for Bloomberg.

Year-to-date, XLV has pulled in just over $1 billion. Among sector ETFs, only the Energy Select Sector SPDR (NYSEArca: XLE) has been a more prolific asset gather. In the first half of the year, sector ETFs attracted nearly $38 billion in new assets with health care funds providing plenty of help. [Sector ETFs Swell in Size]

Health-care ETFs have absorbed $3.9 billion in aggregate capital since the start of 2014, the third-most out of 12 groups, trailing just real estate and energy,” according to Bloomberg.

That is an impressive sum when considering inflows to biotech ETFs have been tepid this year. In the current quarter, of the five major biotech ETFs, only the SPDR S&P Biotech ETF (NYSEArca: XBI) and the First Trust NYSE Arca Biotechnology Index Fund (NYSEArca: FBT) have gained new assets. The $22 million combined added by XBI and FBT is not nearly enough to offset the $314 million pulled from the other three biotech ETFs. Biotech stocks account for 20.1% of XLV’s weight. [A Healthy Biotech ETF]