Equity ETF Indexes Advance; GAZ On Fire, VXX Sinks

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US stocks continued their advancement Monday, as modest homebuilder’s data indicated the sector’s gradual recovery ahead of other housing-related data this week.

The gains were supported by Apple’s hefty dividend announcement and $10 billion share buy-back program over the next three years. Tech stocks advanced the most though some of the heavyweights retreated. US 10-year notes tanked for the ninth consecutive day, as risk sentiments improved and investors dumped Treasuries for more risky assets.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) climbed 0.04 percent to 13,238.98. Technology, financials and energy stocks led the day’s gainers. The Dow reversed the day’s early losses after Wells Fargo and National Association of Home Builders said their builders’ sentiment index remained near their five-year high. 18 of the 30-component Dow advanced for the day.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX) rose 0.4 percent to 1409.75, a near four year high. Tech stocks gained the most, while only utilities retreated in the 10-sector index.

The tech-heavy NASDAQ Composite (COMP) inched up 0.8 percent to close at 3078.32; it’s highest since Nov. 2000.

US government debt continued to slip as yields on 10-year Treasury notes rose to near October highs on better risk sentiments. As economic indicators continue to improve, the central bank could hike interest rates sooner than later in 2014, observed Fed Bank of New York President Bill Dudley.

Another round of monetary easing is starting to look less probable with each passing day, analysts noted. 10-year yields rose 9 basis points on the day to close at 2.39 percent.

ETFs in news:

iPath Dow Jones UBS Natural Gas Subindex Total Return ETN (GAZ) soared 10 percent early on but pulled back later in the session as natural gas futures start to look up. It has been a spectacular day for the premium-laden ETN. The United States Natural Gas Fund (UNG) also advanced for the second straight day, consolidating Friday’s gains.

The SPDR S&P Metals & Mining ETF (XME) added 1.67 percent on the day as cyclical sectors continue to push higher over robust economic data.

Among the day’s losers, iPath S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures ETN (VXX) slipped 6.04 percent, the security’s third straight day of decline, as investors’ confidence on the economy’s recovery continues to improve.

The Global X China Consumers ETF (CHIQ) shed 2.30 percent as a report on China’s residential property market injected some uncertainty in this instrument and other China-linked ETFs.

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