Thu, Sep. 8, 2:01 AM
- Ireland's government won strong backing from parliament for its appeal against a €13B back tax bill the European Commission ordered it to collect from Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), following 12 hours of debate on Wednesday.
- Lawmakers said a failure to challenge the judgment would threaten future investment in Ireland by U.S. companies looking to sell in Europe, a central pillar of the country's decades-old growth strategy.
- ETFs: EIRL, IRL
Tue, May 17, 2:24 AM
- The ECB limited its sovereign debt buys of Portuguese and Irish bonds last month due to concerns about hitting purchase caps - a move that could mean those countries stand to benefit less from the scheme.
- With almost a year left of its QE program, the central bank is already nearing a self-imposed limit of holding a third of the countries' debt.
- Purchases for most nations have increased by 50%, but only by 16% in Portugal and 33% in Ireland.
- ETFs: EIRL, IRL, PGAL
Fri, Feb. 26, 3:08 AM
- Voting is underway in Ireland, with locals heading to the polls to elect 157 new members of parliament as a stellar recovery hangs in the balance.
- Iranians are also hitting the ballot boxes in the country's first elections since last summer's landmark nuclear accord.
- As part of a wider parliamentary election, voters will additionally decide on representatives for the Experts Assembly, a clerical body that appoints the supreme leader.
- ETFs: IRL, KSA, GULF, EIRL, MES
Fri, Jan. 8, 12:01 PM
- European stocks can't hold early gains and close the week with a thud, the Stoxx 50 (NYSEARCA:FEZ) shedding 1.7% today and about 8% for the year's first week. Germany (NYSEARCA:EWG) was hit hardest, falling 1.4% today and nearly 12% for the week. The U.K. (NYSEARCA:EWU) fell just 0.7% today, but 5.3% for the week.
- For perspective, the S&P 500 is flat on the session and down 4.8% for the week.
- ETFs: VGK, EWG, FEZ, HEDJ, EWP, EWI, IEV, EWU, EPV, EZU, GF, EWQ, EIRL, DAX, IRL, FEU, DXGE, HEWG, DBGR, EEA, EURL, EWGS, FEP, UPV, DBEU, ADRU, HEZU, FEEU, EWUS, IEUR, FGM, DXPS, FKU, QDEU, FIEU, QESP, DBEZ, QGBR, DBUK, FEUZ, SBEU, HEWI, DBIT, HEWU, HEWP, DBSP, HGEU, UK, HEGE, HFEZ
Oct. 5, 2015, 3:00 PM
- Just 10% of ETFs are posting positive returns year-to-date, down from 66% one year ago, reports Bloomberg. Just seven ETFs have returns above 10% YTD versus 114 at this time last year.
- The five best performers are niche funds with combined assets of just $260M. The #1 spot goes to the QuantShares U.S. Market Neutral Momentum Fund (NYSEARCA:MOM), with a 21% return. Number two is the Market Vectors China AMC SME - ChiNext ETF (NYSEARCA:CNXT) with a 17.8% return even after tumbling 45% since June 1.
- Talk about niche - rounding out the top three is the WisdomTree Japan Hedged Health Care Fund (NYSEARCA:DXJH), up 16%, though down 18% since mid-August.
- In spots four and five are two single-country European ETFs bucking the selloff in markets across the pond. The iShares MSCI Denmark Capped ETF (BATS:EDEN) and the iShares MSCI Ireland Capper ETF (NYSEARCA:EIRL) have each returned 14%.
Sep. 17, 2015, 4:49 AM
- Link (.pdf)
- ETFs: FXE, RSX, VGK, EUO, EWG, GREK, FEZ, HEDJ, RUSL, EWP, RUSS, EWI, ERO, DFE, IEV, ERUS, RSXJ, EWU, EU, EWL, EPV, EZU, SWZ, NORW, GF, EWD, EWQ, RBL, EPOL, DRR, PLND, DAX, EIRL, EWO, CEE, TRF, IRL, FEU, DXGE, HEWG, DBGR, GXF, EWN, GUR, EWK, EEA, EUFX, EURL, EWGS, FDD, ULE, PGAL, ESR, FEP, UPV, EDEN, DBEU
Apr. 7, 2015, 4:19 AM
- The eurozone services PMI rose to 54.2 (flash 54.3) in March from 53.7 in February.
- Composite PMI increased to an 11-month high of 54 (flash 54.1) from 53.3. (PR)
- German services PMI grew to 55.4 from 54.7; composite PMI 55.4 vs 53.8. (PR)
- French services PMI slowed to 52.4 from 53.4 and composite PMI to 51.5 from 52.2. (PR)
- "Ireland and Spain continued to lead the charge, backed up by a fast-improving German economy," says Markit, but "rates of expansion in Italy and France were modest in comparison."
- While "the PMIs are indicating somewhat sluggish GDP growth of 0.3% for the first quarter," says Markit, "the pace of expansion looks set to gather pace in coming months."
- However, "an ongoing recovery is no one-way bet," Markit warns, "with the Greek crisis remaining a critical threat to stability in the region."
- The euro takes a dive and is -0.1% at $1.0906.
- ETFs: VGK, EWG, FEZ, GREK, EWP, EWI, IEV, HEDJ, EU, EPV, EUFN, EZU, EWQ, EIRL, FEU, EWN, GUR, FEP, EWGS, ESR, UPV, EURL, DBGR, DAX, ADRU, FEEU, DXGE, FGM, DBEU, QDEU, IEUR, FIEU, HEWG, QESP, HEZU, ESTX, DBEZ, SBEU, FEUZ
Mar. 20, 2015, 8:30 AM
- Now up 17% YTD, the Stoxx Europe 600 this week had its highest close since 2000, and is just 1% shy of its all-time high hit in March 2000.
- The big move has early-year bulls like Goldman Sachs and Citigroup scrambling to lift their year-end targets.
- "There’s something much more sustainable here,” says a strategist in London. “Sentiment was bearish in the eurozone for a long, long time. It’s just starting to change.” Indeed. Recent BAML fund manager surveys show bullishness on European stocks has reached uncharted territory.
- Previously: BAML survey: Fund managers move out of U.S. stocks (March 17)
- ETFs: VGK, EWG, FEZ, EWP, EWI, IEV, HEDJ, EPV, EZU, EWD, NORW, EWQ, EIRL, EWO, GXF, FEU, EWN, EWK, EDEN, FEP, EWGS, UPV, PGAL, EURL, DBGR, DAX, ENOR, ADRU, FEEU, DXGE, EFNL, FGM, DBEU, QDEU, IEUR, FIEU, HEWG, QESP, HEZU, ESTX, SBEU, FEUZ, DBEZ
Feb. 19, 2015, 8:40 AM
- "The eurozone rescue architecture is more robust than during the last Grexit scare in 2012," says S&P's Moritz Kraemer, noting the introduction of the European Stability Mechanism which could support teetering sovereigns.
- Banks' gross exposure to Greek financial institutions is just $77B, according to the BIS, down from more than $250B five years ago, and $126B at the end of 2011.
- Kraemer also notes the wide spread between the sovereign yields of Greece with those of the rest of the periphery, suggesting investors believe the redenomination risk for the rest of the PIIGS is rather low (and markets never get this sort of thing wrong!).
- ETFs of interest: EWP, EWI, EIRL, PGAL, QESP
Dec. 31, 2014, 11:34 AM
- Nearly all the ETFs involved are single-country funds, with 22 seeing reduced fees, and 19 increases. First up is the list of funds seeing cuts and the number of basis points:
- EWA 3 basis points, EWO 3 bps, EWC 3 bps, EWQ 3 bps, EWG 3 bps, EWH 3 bps, EWM 3 bps, EWS 3 bps, EWP 3 bps, EWD 3 bps, EWL 3 bps, ENZL 3 bps, EWU 3 bps, EWK 2 bps, EZU 2 bps, EWI 2 bps, EWJ 2 bps, SCJ 2 bps, EWW 2 bps, EWN 2 bps, EIRL 2 bps.
- Next are the funds with increases; all are by one basis point: EWZ, BKF, ECH, EEM, EIS, EZA, EWY, EWT, THD, TUR, ERUS, EPU, EWZS, MCHI, ECNS, INDA, EIDO, EPHE, EPOL.
- Previously: Vanguard lowers fees on 12 ETFs
Dec. 5, 2014, 12:58 PM
Nov. 21, 2014, 7:27 AM
- "We will do what we must to raise inflation and inflation expectations as fast as possible," Mario Draghi told a banking conference, promising faster asset purchases as needed.
- The Stoxx 50 (NYSEARCA:FEZ) is higher by 2.2%, led by a 2.4% gain in Spain (NYSEARCA:EWP) and a 2.3% advance in Italy (NYSEARCA:EWI). Germany (NYSEARCA:EWG) and France (NYSEARCA:EWQ) are up 2%, and the U.K. by 1%.
- The euro (NYSEARCA:FXE) is down 0.9% and buying $1.2432.
- ETFs: VGK, FEZ, EWP, DFE, IEV, HEDJ, EWL, EPV, EZU, EWD, NORW, EIRL, EWO, FEU, EWN, EWK, EDEN, FEP, EWGS, UPV, EURL, ENOR, ADRU, FEEU, EFNL, GERJ, DBEU, EURZ, FSZ, IEUR, FIEU, QESP, SMEZ, ESTX, HEZU, FEUZ
Aug. 14, 2014, 6:46 AM
- Euro-Zone GDP failed to grow in the second quarter following 12 months of weak growth, causing European equity markets to fall and increasing pressure on the ECB to do more to boost growth and inflation.
- Data released this morning by the European Union's statistics office translates into 0.2% growth in annualized terms, down from the first quarter's 0.8% pace.
- The euro zone's three largest economies, which account for two-thirds of the region's €9.6T ($12.8T) GDP, all did not post any growth. German GDP shrank 0.2% from the first quarter and Italy's output fell at a similar pace. The French economy, the bloc's second largest behind Germany, stagnated for a second straight quarter.
- The region's next largest economies, Spain and the Netherlands, posted some growth but not enough to offset their larger peers.
- ETFs: FXE, RSX, VGK, EUO, EWG, FEZ, GREK, EWP, EWI, DFE, RUSL, ERO, RSXJ, IEV, ERUS, RUSS, EWL, HEDJ, EU, EWU, EPV, EUFN, EZU, EWD, NORW, EWQ, EPOL, EIRL, PLND, RBL, EWO, DRR, GXF, FEU, EWN, GUR, EWK, EDEN, FDD, EWGS, FEP, ESR, UPV, EUFX, PGAL, ULE, IFEU, DBGR, ENOR, ADRU, EWUS, EUDG, DXGE, FEEU, GERJ, URR, FGM, EFNL, EURL, FKU, FSZ, DXPS, RUDR, EURZ, DBEU, QDEU, IEUR, FIEU, EUMV, HEWG, SMEZ, QESP, DBUK, QGBR
Jul. 28, 2014, 5:11 AM
- Ireland, one of the largest hubs for funds in Europe, will now allow hedge funds based in the country to lend to companies and even extend loans internationally.
- The new legislation drawn up by the Irish central bank reflects the growing "access to credit" problem in Europe, stirred by reduced European bank lending due to the financial crisis.
- ETFs: EIRL
Jun. 10, 2014, 7:29 AM
- “As I have written many times this year, this is not an investment strategy, but a job preservation strategy," writes Marc Ostwald of Monument Securities of the extraordinary move lower in EU periphery bond yields. "If these guys resist and bemoan poor credit quality, they will underperform their peers ... In the long run this is the road to the next crisis and ruination.”
- While the sovereign 10-year yields of Ireland and Spain have fallen below that of the U.S. (and Italy is close), they're still well above the 1.33% of Germany, so European fund managers can goose performance by continuing to buy the PIGS. Dancing while the music plays is ICAP's Phil Tyson: “I think that the bond market could go higher in the short term as the search for yield continues in an environment where ECB rate expectations are anchored with forward guidance having been strengthened."
- ETFs of interest: EWP, EWI, EIRL, GREK
Jun. 6, 2014, 2:28 PM
- Upgrading Ireland's sovereign debt rating to A- fro BBB+, S&P writes: "The upgrade reflects our view of the brightening prospects for Ireland's domestic economy, which we expect to underpin further improvements in the government's financial profile, capital markets access, and financial system asset quality."
- The agency gives a one-in-three chance of another upgrade in the next two years.
- Bond markets long ago upgraded Ireland, and the yield on its 10-year paper at 2.45% trades below that of the U.S. Interesting times.
- ETFs: EIRL
- CEFs: IRL