Economically Sensitive Sector ETFs Begin to Take Charge | ETF Trends

Sector exchange traded funds that are particularly sensitive to the changes of the U.S. economy led the charge on Tuesday on signs of declining Coronavirus cases and improving economic data helped bolster investor sentiment.

Among the best performing non-leveraged ETFs of Tuesday, the First Trust Nasdaq Bank ETF (Nasdaq: FTXO) increased 3.0%, iShares U.S. Regional Banks ETF (IAT) gained 2.9%, SPDR Oil & Gas Equipment & Services ETF (NYSEArca: XES) advanced 1.8% and iShares U.S. Oil Equipment & Services ETF (NYSEArca: IEZ) rose 2.0%.

Meanwhile, technology shares fell behind for the third consecutive session, reversing what has been a popular growth trade in recent months as investors chased after companies that were more or less shielded from Covid-19’s negative economic impact

“It’s a very healthy sign that the market has broadened out and we’re not just being led by a handful of stocks,” Bruce Bittles, chief investment strategist at Baird Co, told the Wall Street Journal.

The tech segment has largely driven the market rebound, despite the ongoing coronavirus risks, with some market observers calling technology stocks the new defensive play in a digitally-driven world. However, there may be a shift as investors turn to more attractively priced areas of the market, including cyclical or economically sensitive areas that have largely fallen behind the tech rally.

The improving economic outlook may be the rising tide that lifts all boats this time around. For example, improving jobs data, unemployment rates, manufacturing numbers, and strengthening services sectors are helping to support the improved economic outlook. The expectations that the U.S. will return to pre-pandemic levels as more areas of the country reopen have fueled bets that these cyclical sectors will stage a more solid rebound and begin to outperform.

Furthermore, while earnings have been depressed, many are expecting a return to positive earnings growth later this year or early 2021.

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