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40+ ETF Winners That Posted Outstanding Performances In May

Published 06/01/2021, 09:37 AM
Updated 09/02/2020, 02:05 AM

Last month brought new highs to both the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500. However, the tech-heavy NASDAQ 100 index could not go past its all-time high registered in late April. Meanwhile, inflationary expectations have kept the U.S. 10-year Treasury volatile during the month.

Today, we review exchange-traded funds (ETFs) that were clear winners in May. This is not a comprehensive list, which also does not include leveraged and inverse ETFs.

Several of the ETFs mentioned are likely to inspire readers to put together long-term diversified portfolios within their risk/return parameters.

ETFs Following The 3 Major Indices

Before we move on to best performers, let’s take a look at funds that give exposure to the three most followed U.S. indices. These three ETFs deserve our attention:

SPDR® Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF Trust (NYSE:DIA), which tracks the Down Jones Industrial Average—up 1.5% in May (covered here).

DIA Weekly Chart.

SPDR® S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY), which tracks the S&P 500 index—up 0.5% in May (covered here).

SPY Weekly Chart.

Invesco QQQ Trust (NASDAQ:QQQ), which tracks the NASDAQ 100 index—down 2.1% YTD (covered here). The past month has seen a decrease in appetite for tech shares and, thus, the tech-heavy ETF QQQ.

QQQ Weekly Chart.

40 Other Winners In May

Global X Silver Miners ETF (NYSE:SIL) — up 14.9% in May (covered here);

VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSE:GDX) — up 13.4% (covered here);

iPath® Bloomberg Coffee Subindex Total Return(SM) ETN (NYSE:JO) — up 13.1%;

iShares MSCI Poland ETF (NYSE:EPOL) — up 10.9%;

Barclays iPath Bloomberg Tin Subindex Total Return (NYSE:JJT) — up 10.7%;

Invesco Dynamic Energy Exploration & Production ETF (NYSE:PXE) — up 9.6%;

KraneShares SSE STAR Market 50 Index ETF (NYSE:KSTR) — up 8.3%;

iShares MSCI Brazil Small-Cap ETF (NASDAQ:EWZS) — up 8.0%;

iShares MSCI India ETF (NYSE:INDA) — up 7.7% (covered here);

iShares MSCI Russia ETF (NYSE:ERUS) — up 7.5% (covered here);

SPDR® Gold Shares (NYSE:GLD) — up 7.2% (covered here);

United States Copper Index Fund (NYSE:CPER) — up 4.7% (covered here);

Materials Select Sector SPDR® Fund (NYSE:XLB) — up 4.6% (covered here);

iPath® Series B Bloomberg Livestock Subindex Total Return (NYSE:COW) — up 4.6% (covered here);

iShares Global Financials ETF (NYSE:IXG) — up 4.4% (covered here);

iShares MSCI Italy ETF (NYSE:EWI) — up 4.2% (covered here);

SPDR® EURO STOXX 50 ETF (NYSE:FEZ) — up 4.1% (covered here);

Invesco S&P 500® Pure Value ETF (NYSE:RPV) — up 4.0% (covered here);

Invesco KBW Bank ETF (NASDAQ:KBWB) — up 3.9% (covered here);

iShares MSCI South Africa ETF (NYSE:EZA) — up 3.9%;

iShares MSCI Frontier and Select EM ETF (NYSE:FM) — up 3.7% (covered here);

SPDR® S&P Global Natural Resources ETF (NYSE:GNR) — up 3.5%;

ALPS International Sector Dividend Dogs ETF (NYSE:IDOG) — up 3.1%;

iShares MSCI Mexico ETF (NYSE:EWW) — up 3.0% (covered here);

Energy Select Sector SPDR® Fund (NYSE:XLE) — up 3.0% (covered here);

Global X MSCI China Industrials ETF (NYSE:CHII) — up 2.9%

VanEck Vectors Rare Earth/Strategic Metals ETF (NYSE:REMX) — up 2.9% (covered here);

Legg Mason International Low Volatility High Dividend ETF (NYSE:LVHI) — up 2.8%;

Vanguard FTSE Developed Markets Index Fund ETF Shares (NYSE:VEA) — up 2.9% (covered here);

iShares Global Healthcare ETF (NYSE:IXJ) — up 2.1%;

Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets Index Fund ETF Shares (NYSE:VWO) — up 2.0% (covered here);

SPDR® Portfolio S&P 500 Value ETF (NYSE:SPYV) — up 1.8% (covered here);

Xtrackers Japan JPX-Nikkei 400 Equity ETF (NYSE:JPN) — up 1.7%;

iShares Residential and Multisector Real Estate ETF (NYSE:REZ) — up 1.6% (covered here);

First Trust Dow 30 Equal Weight ETF (NYSE:EDOW) — up 1.6%;

iShares Transportation Average ETF (NYSE:IYT) — up 1.5% (covered here);

ProShares Global Listed Private Equity ETF (NYSE:PEX) — up 1.4% (covered here);

ETFMG Travel Tech ETF (NYSE:AWAY) — up 1.4% (covered here);

Health Care Select Sector SPDR® Fund (NYSE:XLV) — up 1.3% (covered here);

VanEck Vectors Morningstar Wide Moat ETF (NYSE:MOAT) — up 1.1% (covered here).

Bottom Line

In May, one of the most important takeaways for investors was the strong rise in commodity prices across the board. Silver, gold and miners have been especially glittering.

Increases in metals, materials and real estate pointed to a more solid base in the “real economy.” The optimism for economic reopening worldwide has also led to gains in copper, oil, transportation and travel shares.

We’ve also seen a move into non-U.S. equity markets, mainly in Europe, Japan and in frontier and emerging markets, including China, which, for the most part, has been a laggard in 2021. Global investors have been brushing off U.S. data, pointing out to a quickening inflation.

Market participants have also been searching for yield as evidenced by the preference for high-dividend shares worldwide. Health care, which has come under pressure in April, could also be stabilizing at this point.

Finally, rotational forces have set back the U.S. tech darlings, possibly as a result of high valuations and profit-taking.

Overall, the results in May point to the importance of having a diversified portfolio for retail investors. In June, inflation is likely to get further attention as analysts debate whether it will prove to be a passing phase. Potentially, mixed economic data could also mean choppy stock trading. The first week of June is likely to see light trading during this shortened week.

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Excellent article! Thanks!
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