Today left investors with little information to chew on going into the weekend. The past week has been dominated by European woes as well as speculation over the U.S. The Congress “Super Committee” has until Wednesday to pass an important budget deficit plan that will aim to trim $1.2 trillion. So far, it would seem that negotiations have gone nowhere and will likely go down to the wire. The last time negotiations nearly ran out of time equities saw harsh losses on multiple days as we endured one of the most volatile months in recent memory. Next week will feature a heavy focus on these important delegations despite the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday.
Markets finished relatively flat on the day. The Dow jumped by 25 points while the S&P lost just 0.04%. The Nasdaq did not fare quite as well as that index saw losses just over half a percent. Gold saw meager gains while oil saw yet another rough day with losses of 1.4%, finishing the fossil fuel’s week at around $97.4 per barrel, a long ways off from its weekly high of around $102 per barrel. Despite a relatively slow trading day, we outline two of the most notable ETF performances on the day.
One of the biggest ETF winners came from the DB Base Metals Fund (NYSEARCA:DBB) which saw gains of nearly 1.9%. This ETF tracks a rules-based index composed of futures contracts on some of the most liquid and widely used base metals: Aluminum, zinc and copper (grade A). After yesterday featured a rough day for base metals, today seemed like something of a correction as futures edged higher, attempting to recover from Thursday’s losses. DBB has lost over 22% on the year as commodities have seen a fair amount of pressure.
One of the biggest ETF losers on the day was the S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN (NYSEARCA:VXX). This volatility product tracks front month VIX futures contracts. Though today did not see equities make any major gains, the VIX suffered, dragging this fund down more than 3%. VXX will be an important product to watch in the coming days, however, as markets are poised for high volatility. For traders with strong opinions on where markets may be headed, this fund presents itself as a great speculation tool to turn a quick profit.
Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.
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