How To Protect Against FANG Stocks That Could Tilt The Market | ETF Trends

With several of the FANG stocks reporting earnings this week–Amazon, Alphabet’s Google, and Facebook–investors are looking for ways to hedge against volatility that might accompany earnings moves.

The three FANG stocks alone represent roughly 8% of the S&P 500, affecting ETFs such as SPY, among others. For example, when Alphabet’s Class A and C shares alone account for 23% of the Communication Services Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLC), the ETF is understandably jolted by any earnings news.

“I think it is reasonable to be concerned when we get to frothy markets and these high concentrations,” managing director Dave Nadig said Monday on CNBC’s “ETF Edge.”

Fortunately, there are strategies for investors who would like to have some modicum of protection against such volatility.

Luckily, “there are lots of ways to insulate your portfolio from some of these moves,” Nadig said. “You can buy reverse-cap-weighted ETFs, which effectively will underweight things that are over-present in the S&P [500], or you can just go into any number of factor-weighted or equal-weighted [funds].”

A reverse-cap strategy is one way to hedge against such moves, says Nadig.

“It effectively turns [the investment]into a mid-cap fund,” he said. “When we see these big, large-cap momentum names like Google, Amazon, Facebook … inevitably fall out of bed, the mid-caps tend to be what come up and pick up the slack.”

Other experts, like Astoria Portfolio Advisors founder and Chief Investment Officer John Davi, believe these stocks are too cumbersome or have simply lost their luster and should be avoided at this point.

“I think you want to shy away from FANG and cyclical and growth stocks,” he said. “I think you want to lean more on stocks that have strong earnings, high-quality stocks. That’s the premise that we’ve been riding in our portfolios all year and I think that makes a lot of sense.”

Finally, for investors wishing they could make a more leveraged downside bet on the group of technology stocks without selling them all individually, there is an ETF for that: the MicroSectors FANG+ Index -3X Inverse Leveraged ETN (FNGD). The ETN offers investors the total return of the NYSE FANG plus Index on a daily compounded -3x inverse leveraged basis, before taking into account fees.

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