A number of signals indicating that a trader's market is about to unfold came to the surface last week. The market showed signs of cracking temporarily after comments from Ben Bernanke gave little hope to the notion that the Fed is set to take additional action to prop up a slow-moving U.S. economy.
Despite a strong run in the broader equity markets since the start the year, not everyone is convinced of the sustainability. Our research is telling us that a market decline could last for quite some time once such a downward trend develops.
ETFs will maintain their popularity as short term sector plays continue to be the norm and buy-and-hold strategies become more and more obsolete. Here are four funds for traders to monitor for potential trades this week.
Across the Pond
This week, Greece's private debt creditors are set to render a decision as to whether or not they will approve a $140 billion sovereign debt restructuring deal. Uncertainty surrounding the situation has been unsettling to the entire European Union.
European stocks have still been able to grind out gains as the Vanguard MSCI Europe ETF (VGK) has gained 11.2% since the beginning of the year. A resolution to the crisis in Greece could take an added weight off the shoulders of European equities. However, if a solution is not reached soon, this fund could be headed lower as the 50-day moving average of this fund will have difficulty in running down the 200-day moving average.
The PowerShares DB U.S. Dollar Index Bullish Fund (UUP) was trending higher in the second-half of last week as the dollar rose to a nine month high against the yen. Bernanke's comments were also a positive development for traders betting on the dollar. Shares of UUP rose 1.4% last week and this ETF is likely going to hang tough as long as issues in Greece remain in the headlines.
Commodity traders will be monitoring the progress of the Guggenheim Timber ETF (CUT) this week. The fund rose 4.4% last month as demand for lumber from China picked up and hopes of a housing recovery in the U.S. continued to linger. Lumber was one of the best performing commodities last month as it approached a 10-month high. The 50-day moving average has almost eclipsed the 200-day moving average on this ETF which is a very bullish prospect.
One other ETF for traders to keep an eye on this week is the United States Oil Fund (USO). The Energy Department will release its inventory report on Wednesday morning. Last week, the department noted that oil inventories rose by 4.16 million barrels. Shares of USO are up 7.0% year-to-date and have put together a nice tape ever since the 50-day moving average cut above the 200-day moving average at the onset of 2012.
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