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Top-Performing ETFs of March

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Wall Street was moderately upbeat in March with the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones adding about 2.28% and 5.34%. On the other hand, the Nasdaq Composite has lost 2.4% and the Russell 2000 has retreated about 1.6% past month.

Value stocks gained an upper hand in the month over growth stocks due to rising rate worries. While Wall Street rejoiced the Biden administration’s $1.9-trillion stimulus, tax hike fears are also looming. Against this backdrop, below we highlight a few ETFs that gained at least 10% in March.

ETFs in Focus

Breakwave Dry Bulk Shipping ETF (BDRY - Free Report) ) – Up 29.8%

The shipping ETF tracks the Capesize 5TC Index, Panamax 4TC Index & Supramax 6TC Index measures rates for shipping dry bulk freight and was crowned the best ETF of the month. The pickup in global economic growth has supported the dry bulk shipping rates. Gradually rising demand across all vessel categories have mainly aided the area and the related fund (read: Top & Flop Zones of 2020 and Their ETFs).

Plus, the Suez Canal blockage by a massive ship worked wonders for shipping rates in late March as the incident has caused disruptions in shipping, pushing shipping rates higher (read: ETFs to Win/Lose on Suez Canal Blockage).

S&P Homebuilders SPDR (XHB - Free Report) – Up 13.9%

The housing sector is red hot and is entering the key spring selling season, which is considered the peak time for home sellers. Normally, the season starts in March and lasts through May-June thanks to warmer weather after a chilly winter and buyers’ tendency to move into a new house before the next school calendar starts.

Plus, demand is pretty high in the housing market currently that results in higher prices. Bubble fear is not in sight as lending standards are tighter, and buyers are putting down more cash. Mortgage rates have been subdued. Agreed, sales of existing and new homes were down slightly in February, but that was probably due to inclement weather (read: Can Housing ETFs Remain Red-Hot in 2021?).              

Pacer US Cash Cows 100 ETF (COWZ - Free Report) – Up 13.7%

Cash is a corporate strength amid the ongoing pandemic. The latest surge in virus cases probably led investors to bet on cash-rich stocks and ETFs. The underlying Pacer US Cash Cows 100 Index uses an objective, rules-based methodology to provide exposure to large and mid-capitalization U.S. companies with high free cash flow yields.     

Steel VanEck ETF (SLX - Free Report) – Up 13.0%

The underlying index tracks the overall performance of companies involved in the steel sector.Steel prices have risen massively in recent months as indicated in the manufacturing survey. This metal has been a direct beneficiary of the economic rebound (read: U.S. Manufacturing at 3-Year High: ETFs in Focus). 

Invesco S&P Smallcap Value With Momentum ETF (XSVM - Free Report) ) – Up 12.9%

Small-cap stocks put a great show in March as this spectrum is more domestically exposed. Biden’s massive stimulus and a rising greenback have favored small caps more than the large caps that have greater exposure to foreign shores.

S&P Retail SPDR (XRT - Free Report) ) – Up 12.0%

A dovish Fed, fiscal stimulus under the Biden administration, $1400-stimulus checks, still-low oil prices, moderate inflation, ebbing health as well as financial risks with accelerated COVID-19 vaccination helped the retail sector.Americans are growing optimistic about an economic recovery.This is especially true as the University of Michigan’s final sentiment index climbed to a pandemic high of 84.9 in late March from a preliminary reading of 83 (read: 5 Best-Performing Sector ETFs of Q1).

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