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4 Best-Performing Sector ETFs of Last Week

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Last week was a moderate one for Wall Street.The S&P 500, the Dow Jones and the Nasdaq Composite have lost about 0.6%, 0.03% and 0.6%, respectively, past week. Renewed hopes for a coronavirus vaccine and treatments lent support to the markets while slowing retail sales as well as rising unemployment claims made investors’ mood a little somber (read: Why Is This the Right Time to Invest in Low-Volatility ETFs?). 

Moreover, last week was busy with mergers and acquisitions in both tech and healthcare sectors. The Fed has also promised lower rates for longer. Against this backdrop, below we highlight a few sector ETFs that gained the most past week (read: No Rate Hike Until 2023: Here's How to Play With ETFs).

Healthcare

The healthcare sector topped the show last week the reason being the news of AstraZeneca’s (AZN - Free Report) resumption of its phase 3 trial. Drugmaker AstraZeneca said that it has resumed British clinical trials of its COVID-19 vaccine, one of the most-advanced in development, after receiving a nod from safety watchdogs.

Investors should note that doubts over a faster rollout of vaccines emerged in early September when nine drug companies pledged that they will not submit vaccine candidates for FDA review until their safety and efficacy is shown in large clinical trials. AstraZeneca, Moderna, Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, GlaxoSmithKline, Merck, Novavax, BioNTech and Sanofi are some of the companies that took the pledge. 

There have been news of mergers and acquisitions in the sector. Frankfurt-listed shares of Immunomedics (IMMU) gained more than 100% on the news that Gilead Sciences (GILD) will acquire the U.S. biopharmaceutical company for $21 billion (read: Biotech ETFs Soar on Gilead-Immunomedics Deal).

Also, biotech company Eli Lilly and Company (LLY) said its antibody therapy has been found to lower the SARS-CoV-2 viral load in newly infected patients as well as lessen hospitalisation risk.

Defiance Nasdaq Junior Biotechnology ETF (IBBJ - Free Report) (up 13.7%), Principal Healthcare Innovators Index ETF (BTEC - Free Report) (up 12.5%), Invesco DWA Healthcare Momentum ETF (PTH) (up 12.0%), Virtus LifeSci Biotech Clinical Trials ETF (BBC) (up 11.8%) and iShares Genomics Immunology and Healthcare ETF (IDNA) (up 11.6%) were among the top performers. Apart from these funds, several other ETFs in the biotech and healthcare sector outperformed last week.

Energy

Last week, oil prices had the best week since June as the de-facto OPEC leader Saudi Arabia defended the oil market recovery (per Bloombergquint) amid a dull demand outlook in the wake of coronavirus outbreak. Moreover, the shutting down of U.S. offshore production due to Hurricane Sally and a decline in the U.S. crude and gasoline inventory led to a jump in oil prices.

U.S. crude stocks declined 4.4 million barrels in the last to last week to 496 million barrels, marking their lowest since April, per the U.S. Energy Information Administration, compared with analysts’ expectations of a 1.3 million-barrel rise in a Reuters’ poll.

United States Gasoline Fund, LP(UGA) (up 11%), ProShares K-1 Free Crude Oil Strategy ETF (OILK) (up 7.9%) and United States Brent Oil Fund, LP (BNO) (up 7.5%) were the winners past week.

Materials

Clean energy investing has been riding high lately. As a result, the materials corner of this specific segment has also been benefiting. Among the clean energy segment, electric vehicles are catching investors’ attention greatly. This is why Global X Lithium Battery Tech ETF (LIT - Free Report) (up9.3%)and Amplify Advanced Battery Metals And Materials ETF (BATT) (up 7.5%) were the winners last week as most plug-in hybrids and all-electric vehicles use lithium-ion batteries.

E-Sports

The gaming industry has been booming this year buoyed by the pandemic as people are mostly stuck at home. As a result, spending on video games in the United States has skyrocketed to new heights in the past few months.

To add more allure to gaming investing, DraftKings (DKNG - Free Report) and Caesars (CZR - Free Report) recently announced a multi-year deal with ESPN that will feature their content on the network's digital and TV platforms. Per the deal, DraftKings will be the exclusive provider of daily fantasy sports and a co-exclusive partner for gambling link-outs from ESPN, the company said, as quoted on CNBC. The news boosted Roundhill Sports Betting & iGaming ETF (BETZ - Free Report) (up 7.8%) last week(read: ETFs to Win From the DraftKings- Caesars-ESPN Deal).

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