Press Room

February 23, 2016

New York, New York – February 22nd, 2016 - After steep declines to begin the year, the Technology Sector appears to be showing signs of life. Last week, the NASDAQ Composite Index rallied 5.5 percent, but is still down approximately 8.5 percent year-to-date. Data from Kensho, a market data analytics system, show that in the past 10 years the Nasdaq Index has jumped over 10.0 percent in a month 17 times and in those times chipmakers and Chinese tech companies have been some of the top performers.

February 19, 2016

New York, New York – February 19th, 2016 - The Tobacco Industry has benefitted from the volatility in the markets this year as investors have flocked to the Industry’s stable revenues and attractive dividends. The Big Three of Altria Group Inc., Philip Morris International Inc. and Reynolds American, Inc. are up an average of approximately 5.0 percent in 2016, compared to losses of 5.8 percent and 6.2 percent for the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 Index.

February 18, 2016

New York, New York – February 18th, 2016 - Apple chip suppliers have rallied in recent weeks after concerns of slowing iPhone sales caused chip suppliers to stumble out the gates in 2016. January has historically been a disappointing month for sales as consumers cut back spending after the holidays. Both the iShares PHLX Semiconductor ETF (NASDAQ: SOXX) and the Market Vectors Semiconductor ETF (NYSEARCA: SMH) have rallied approximately 5.0 percent in the past month.

February 17, 2016

New York, New York – February 17th, 2016 - Recent positive economic data from China has provided a lift for Chinese equities. On Monday, China’s currency, the Yuan, jumped 1.2 percent, the largest rally since July 2005. Additionally, numbers from the People’s Bank of China show that new loans issued by Chinese banks totaled 2.51 trillion Yuan ($385.5 billion) in January, more than quadruple the 597.8 billion Yuan lent out in December and above expectations of 1.8 trillion Yuan, according to analysts polled by Reuters.

February 12, 2016

New York, New York - February 12th, 2016 - Financials have been the worst performing sector out of the 10 in the S&P 500 Index in 2016. The Financial Select Sector SPDR Fund (NYSEARCA: XLF), which seeks to replicate the price and yield performance of the Financial Select Sector Index, has fallen approximately 17.5 percent year-to-date, compared to a 11.0 percent drop for the S&P 500. Bank stocks have been among the financial ETF’s biggest losers as Bank of America Corp. and Citigroup Inc.

February 11, 2016

New York, New York – February 11th, 2016 - The Biotech Industry has yet to recover from the sell-off triggered by a Hillary Clinton tweet about the “price gouging” of biotech drugs at the end of 2015. Biotechs have continued to falter in 2016 as growing concerns regarding the health of the global economy have weakened investors’ appetites for riskier investments. The iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF and the SPDR S&P Biotech ETF have posted declines of 25.0 percent and 33.0 percent, respectively, year-to-date.

February 10, 2016

New York, New York – February 10th, 2016 - Oil & Gas stocks were sent tumbling after the International Energy Agency (IEA) warned that oil prices could face further pressure as the supply glut worsens.  On Tuesday, the SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Exploration & Production ETF (NYSEARCA: XOP) dropped 3.91 percent, down nearly 20.0 percent year-to-date. Crude prices have plunged nearly 55.0 percent since November of 2014.

February 5, 2016

New York, New York – February 5th, 2016 - The S&P 500 Index eked out a small gain 0.15 percent Thursday as commodity producers rose on a weaker dollar, which helped offset disappointing results from consumer-discretionary stocks. Raw materials producers were the largest gainers with a 2.8 percent increase, while disappointing guidance and results from Kohl’s and Ralph Lauren saw consumer staples and discretionary stocks fall over 0.5 percent.

February 4, 2016

New York, New York – February 4th, 2016 -  As we approach the midpoint of the U.S. earnings season results from S&P 500 companies have failed to lift the Index despite topping expectations. As of February 1st, data from FactSet show that approximately 50 percent of companies have topped revenue projections for the fourth quarter, short of the 5-year average of 56.0 percent. The S&P 500 is on track to post negative sales for the fourth consecutive season.

February 3, 2016

New York, New York – February 3rd, 2016 - Fading hopes of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) lowering oil production sent oil prices tumbling below $30.00 a barrel Tuesday, erasing gains from the recent four-day rally. Goldman Sachs has stated that it is “highly unlikely” that OPEC would jointly agree on a production cut. The firm believes that oil could fall to new lows of below $26.00 a barrel. The iShares U.S.