Back to top

Image: Bigstock

4 Best ETF Areas of Q1

Read MoreHide Full Article

Wall Street is poised to conclude the first quarter with robust gains.The S&P 500 is on track its strongest first quarter since 2019 and the 12th best first quarter since 1945, having surged more than 9% thus far. Last week, the S&P 500 Index surpassed 5,200 in a historic move, reflecting optimism for the financial markets, spurred by the Fed's recent indication of interest rate cuts.

Meanwhile, the Dow Jones has risen by 4.4%, potentially marking its best first quarter since 2021, while the Nasdaq Composite Index is poised to lead with gains of 9.3%. Factors such as expectations of Fed rate cuts despite recently-released hot inflation numbers, robust earnings, and sustained growth in the AI sector are driving the stock market rally.

In the latest meeting, the Fed maintained its interest rates steady in a range of 5.25%-5.50% and signaled three rate cuts this year, citing expanding economic activity and easing but elevated inflation. Against this backdrop, below we highlight winning ETF areas of the first quarter.


Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC - Free Report) – Up 78.9%

ProShares Bitcoin & Ether Market Cap Weight Strategy ETF (BETH - Free Report) – Up 58%

In recent years, Bitcoin has undergone a tectonic shift in its reputation as an investment asset. Once infamous for its extreme price swings and high volatility, the cryptocurrency has shown signs of stability, with volatility subsiding over the past decade.

Since the launch of the first Bitcoin ETFs on January 11, the asset has surged more than 50%. The ETFs represent a landmark in Bitcoin’s journey, offering both retail and institutional investors a regulated and accessible means to invest in the cryptocurrency. As a result, crypto assets like bitcoin and ether jumped this year.


Roundhill Cannabis ETF (WEED - Free Report) – Up 36.2%

AdvisorShares Pure US Cannabis ETF (MSOS - Free Report) – Up 34%

The rescheduling of cannabis has almost become a centrality.  In a White House meeting, Vice President Kamala Harris recently urged the DEA to expedite the rescheduling of marijuana, criticizing its current Schedule 1 classification as "absurd" and "patently unfair." She put stress on the need for swift action and highlighted ongoing efforts toward rescheduling.

The presidential election is looming this year. President Biden has already canceled $5.8 billion in student debt for public service workers. Amidst such developments, Democrats' another agenda – the legalization of marijuana or cannabis – will now likely gain steam, according to market watchers (read: Is Rescheduling a Certainty for Cannabis? ETFs That Surge).


VanEck Semiconductor ETF (SMH - Free Report) – Up 28.7%

Semiconductor stocks have been in a solid shape due to the AI mania. In Nvidia’s GPU Technology Conference (GTC), CEO Jensen Huang unveiled the latest cutting-edge chips, which was held in person for the first time since 2019.

Also, at the conference, the company unveiled partnerships in the healthcare sector, representing a strategic move toward expanding its revenue streams beyond tech sectors. These partnerships include collaborations with Johnson & Johnson (JNJ - Free Report) for surgical applications and GE Healthcare to enhance medical imaging.  


Invesco S&P MidCap Momentum ETF (XMMO - Free Report) – Up 27.2%

There has been a shift toward a more inclusive approach to stock market investments. Somewhat ebbing AI mania and regulatory woes probably are leading Investors to look beyond last year’s super stocks – Magnificent Seven. Plus, an expected lower rate environment is upbeat for smaller-cap stocks (read: Buy 5 Top-Ranked ETFs to Play Broadening US Market Rally).


Published in