SPDR S&P 500 (SPY) Up on Solid Day for American, Emerging Market Stocks

Joel Anderson |

Global markets appeared to enjoy a universally positive day on Tuesday, with major indices up in America and abroad, pulling up some of the most-actively traded ETFs in the process.

DJIA, S&P 500, Nasdaq Have Big Days, Boosting American Equities ETFs

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up over 0.5 percent by mid-day, with the S&P 500 approaching 0.9 percent gains and the Nasdaq up almost 1.5 percent in the same time frame.

This, in turn, meant the SPDR S&P 500 ETF ($SPY) was up about 0.9 percent, and the SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF ($DIA) gained over 0.5 percent. The PowerShares QQQ Trust ($QQQ) saw gains exceeding 1.75 percent, the Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF (VTI) jumped almost 1 percent, and the iShares Russell 1000 Value Index Fund ($IWD) was up about 0.75 percent. Small-cap companies weren’t left out of the party, with

Driving the gains were positive data on retail sales for December. December saw retail sales increase 0.7 percent excluding automobiles, gasoline, building materials, and food services.

“Christmas was not as bad as everyone thought,” said Chris Gaffney, senior market strategist with EverBank. “The markets were set up for a poor reading.”

It also showed resiliency for this market, with gains coming the day after the DJIA slumped some 179 points, or 1.1 percent.

"The retail sales are painting a better economic backdrop than payrolls did, and investors are using recent weakness as an opportunity to buy," said Mike Gibbs, co-head of the equity advisory group at Raymond James.

Emerging Markets ETFs Also Rising on China Stocks Bounce

Emerging market equities also saw gains, with the iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index ETF (EEM) showing gains approaching 1 percent by mid-day. It was a return to strength after two rough weeks that had EEM down over 4 percent in 2014.

Much of this decline had been driven by plunging Chinese equities, with the Shanghai Shenzen 300 off 5.5 percent since the start of the year to yesterday and the Shanghai Composite Index falling 4.7 percent to 2,009.56 at the end of yesterday’s trading.

Tuesday, though, brought a rebound, possibly driven by investors seeing a market at its lowest since the start of August and searching out value-buys. The Shenzen 300 and Shanghai composite bounced almost 0.9 percent.

“With the market approaching the 2,000 level, some investors are bottom-fishing,” said Jingxi Investment Management Co.’s chief investment officer Wang Zheng. “Concern over IPO sales is still the biggest factor that is weighing on the sentiment as some of these companies are selling at very high prices.”

Major China ETFs were on the rise as a result, with both the iShares FTSE China 25 Index ETF (FXI) and the iShares MSCI China Index Fund ($MCHI) jumping just over 1 percent.

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