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ETFs to Bet on Popular Investment Themes of 2021

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This year’s headlines were mostly dominated by pandemic-related updates, leaving investors in a continuous quest for good options for putting their money in. Amid the pandemic-related concerns, thematic investing continues to be a popular trend.

Meanwhile, the discovery of variants like Delta and Omicron made investors increasingly apprehensive about another round of lockdowns in 2021. Presently, market participants remain concerned about the uncertainty surrounding the pandemic and the Federal Reserve’s decision to speed up the tapering prices or hike the interest rates sooner.

Against this backdrop, let’s take a look at some of the themes that are trending in the investment world:

Blockchain and Cryptocurrency

Blockchain came into the limelight as the underlying technology for the most popular cryptocurrency — Bitcoin. An article on Investor’s Business Daily has defined blockchain technology as a shared public ledger, also known as a distributed database, which tracks and records transactions in a transparent and tamper-proof way.

The estimates for the uptake of this technology are mind-boggling. Deutsche Bank expects blockchain systems to record transactions for about 10% of worldwide GDP by 2027.

Cryptocurrency also ruled the headlines as investors kept on tracking the major movements in some digital coins like Bitcoins, Ethereum, Dogecoin and many others. Notable events ranging from the IPO of the biggest cryptocurrency trading platform, Coinbase Global, Inc. (COIN), to El Salvador accepting Bitcoin as legal tender to the launch of the first bitcoin futures ETF in the United States, all highlight the growing popularity of cryptocurrencies.

Here are some options for investors to consider to join the trend, one of them being the ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF (BITO - Free Report) . Those aiming to have an indirect exposure can consider ETFs with exposure to Coinbase. Coinbase has exposure to funds, including VanEck Digital Transformation ETF (DAPP - Free Report) and Simplify Volt Fintech Disruption ETF (VFIN). Blockchain ETFs like Amplify Transformational Data Sharing ETF (BLOK - Free Report) may also be tracked by investors (read: Should You Invest in Bitcoin ETFs Now?).

Meme Stock Frenzy

Meme stocks caught investor attention due to hype on social media and online forums like Reddit, WallStreetBets and Robinhood, instead of focus on the company fundamentals, leading to a surge in trading volumes and share price. Thus, these are considered speculative trades. Meme stocks are triggered by small traders who cause a short squeeze on the stock. Some popular meme names of 2021 are videogame retailer GameStop (GME), movie theater operator AMC Entertainment Holdings (AMC) and Blackberry (BB).

In order to ride the meme stocks frenzy, Tuttle Capital Management introduced The Fear of Missing Out ETF (FOMO - Free Report) in 2021 that could lower the risk of investing in a single stock. FOMO ETF offers investors a new tool for leveraging the retail trading boom by investing in all the buzziest “meme stocks” and funds.

Clean Energy ETFs

Alternative energy includes any energy source that acts as a replacement for conventional and non-renewable fossil fuels. This space has been in the spotlight of late for many reasons. Increasingly, large corporations are making or promising investments to gain a carbon-neutral status.

Favorable government initiatives and federal policies, including tax incentives to encourage installation, have continued to accelerate global market growth for clean energy in 2021. Moreover, despite turbulences stemming from the coronavirus pandemic, both solar and wind energies have been dominating the global renewable space.

President Joe Biden is expected to talk about climate emergencies on global platforms and ensure that the United States will achieve 100% clean energy economy and net-zero emissions, at least by 2050. Moreover, he pledged to reduce the U.S. greenhouse gas emissions to half by 2030, as stated in a Yahoo Finance article.

Thus, investors can consider the following ETFs, such as iShares Global Clean Energy ETF (ICLN - Free Report) , Invesco Solar ETF  (TAN - Free Report) ,  First Trust NASDAQ Clean Edge Green Energy Index Fund (QCLN) and ALPS Clean Energy ETF  (ACES) (read: Best ETFs for the Infrastructure Boom & Megatrends).

Digital Payment ETFs

The world is gradually moving toward digitization, increasing the dominance of technology in the financial sector. A Market Data Forecast (MDF) report also highlights the growing opportunities in the global financial technology market, which is expected to see a CAGR of 23.4% between 2021 and 2026. According to the report, the fintech space is expected to reach a market value of around $324 billion by 2026.

Along with an increased interest in online shopping, customers are resorting to digital payments to clear their bills. At the same time, merchants and utility providers are increasingly advocating the same.

In such a scenario, investors can check out ETFMG Prime Mobile Payments ETF  (IPAY - Free Report) ,  Ecofin Digital Payments Infrastructure Fund  and  Global X FinTech ETF  (FINX) (read:  A Comprehensive Guide to Fintech ETFs).

AI, Robotics & Cyber Security ETFs

AI is fast changing the business landscape by expanding opportunities, driving revenues and enhancing efficiencies. It helps enhance almost everything, including advertising, healthcare, robotics, retail, video streaming, gaming and urban development.

We live in an era largely dominated by AI applications and technological advancements. Amid the coronavirus crisis, demand for online services increased, which led to the dominance of AI. Globally, the AI market is estimated to see a CAGR of 29%, rising from $42.8 billion in 2019 to $152.9 billion in 2023, according to an Analytics Insight article.

The robotics market is flooded with opportunities as robots are being used for jobs, such as sanitizing hospitals, homes and workplaces, along with monitoring, surveying, handling, and delivering food and medicines.

However, the increasing adoption of these technologies is exposing businesses, governments and organizations to cyber risks. Given the severity of the situation, Cybersecurity Ventures expects the worldwide expenditure on cybersecurity to surpass $1 trillion cumulatively from 2017 through 2021.

Per a Grand View Research report, the global cybersecurity market is expected to reach $241.1 billion, witnessing a CAGR of 11% from 2019 to 2025. Accordingly, our investors can consider  Global X Robotics & Artificial Intelligence ETF  (BOTZ - Free Report) ,  First Trust Nasdaq Artificial Intelligence and Robotics ETF  (ROBT - Free Report) ,  ROBO Global Robotics & Automation ETF  (ROBO),  iShares Robotics and Artificial Intelligence Multisector ETF  (IRBO),  First Trust Nasdaq Cybersecurity ETF (CIBR - Free Report) and  ETFMG Prime Cyber Security ETF  (HACK).

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