U.S. stocks advanced further into record territory this week, posting a fifth consecutive weekly gain, but they were not alone.
Russia’s benchmark Micex Index surged on talks of a cease-fire with Ukraine. Europe exchange jumped after the European Central Bank unexpectedly lowered interest rates.
The Eurozone’s benchmark borrowing rate has been pared to 0.05% from 0.15% while its marginal lending facility has been lowered to 0.3% from 0.4%. The ECB’s deposit facility is now deeper in negative territory at -0.2% from -0.1%. Chinese stocks posted their best weekly run in over a year and a half. [Hedge Euro ETF Shines]
Once again, global ETFs were well represented on this week’s most searched list, but the tilt was not quite as heavy we saw last week.
The Market Vectors Russia ETF (NYSEArca: RSX) was once again the week’s most searched international ETF after surging 5.6% amid the aforementioned cease-fire talks. However, RSX had far more competition for the most searched spot among international ETFs this week than it did last week.
The ECB rate cut sent the WisdomTree Europe Hedged Equity Fund (NYSEArca: HEDJ) rallying to close the week with much of the ETF’s 3.5% weekly gain accrued in the latter half of the week. HEDJ, one of this year’s fastest growing ETFs, finished the week less than 0.7% below its 52-week high and with the CurrencyShares Euro Currency Trust (NYSEArca: FXE) imperiled, HEDJ could easily take out its previous high next week. [Falling Euro Helps These ETFs]
The KraneShares CSI China Internet Fund (NasdaqGM: KWEB) was deservedly back among the most search global ETFs. KWEB recently surpassed the $100 million in assets under management level and with the Alibaba IPO looming, we suspect this will not be the last time KWEB makes an appearance on our weekly most searched list.
Speaking of Alibaba, it was reported Friday that the company willoffer its shares at $60 to $66, valuing the company at about $160 billion at the midpoint of that range. It looks like the stock will enter KWEB, which will happen after the eleventh trading day, as top-five holding in the ETF. [Alibaba’s Valuation and How it Affects ETFs]
Looking at U.S.-focused ETFs, health care funds were in style once again this week with the First Trust NYSE Arca Biotechnology Index Fund (NYSEArca: FBT) and the Health Care Select Sector SPDR (NYSEArca: XLV) each making return appearances.
On a related note, there were elevated searches of the ProShares Ultrashort Nasdaq Biotechnology (NasdaqGM: BIS) for the first time since June. Perhaps that is a sign some investors are bracing for a pullback in hot biotech stocks and ETFs.