The holiday season is in a full swing with almost everyone on a digital shopping spree. Innovative products such as wearables, VR headsets, drones and virtual reality devices are fast becoming technology staples for savvy Americans.
In fact, 2016 seems to be the strongest holiday spending year for the tech sector. According to the Consumer Technology Association, total spending is expected to reach $36.05 billion; up 3.1% from last year, as about 68% of the consumers (around 170 million people) are expected to buy technology gifts this holiday season, up 6% year-over-year. Most of the sales are expected to be generated online with a 45.2% surge expected from online shopping through mobile devices (read: ETFs & Stocks to Roar Higher on Record Online Spending).
While traditional products like televisions, iPhones, headphones and consoles continue to excite consumers, emerging technologies are seeing increased interest this year. In particular, wearables are expected to top the list with 27% of the consumers planning to buy followed by smart home devices (24% plan to buy), connected or digital toys (11%), VR headsets (10%) and drones (9%).
Given the bullish holiday outlook, tech stocks have nicely rebounded from the post-election slump with the ultra-popular Select Sector SPDR Technology ETF (XLK) gaining 3.6% since Nov. 8. In fact, a few exchange-traded funds have been investors’ darling this holiday season and are easily crushing the broad market fund (read: Technology ETFs Rebound: Can the Surge Continue?).
With just a few days left for Christmas, these five technology ETFs are excellent bets for a last-minute investment.
Five Technology ETFs to Buy Before Christmas
First Trust Nasdaq Semiconductor ETF (FTXL)
The First Trust Nasdaq Semiconductor ETF (NASDAQ:FTXL) fund offers exposure to the 30 most-liquid U.S. semiconductor securities based on volatility, value and growth by tracking the Nasdaq U.S. Smart Semiconductor Index. Holding 29 stocks in its basket, it is well spread across components with none holding more than 8.72% of assets. FTXL debuted in the space three months ago and has already accumulated $8.1 million. Average trading volume is light at around 10,000 shares and its expense ratio comes in at 0.60%. The fund gained 13.7% since the presidential election.
PowerShares S&P SmallCap Information Technology Portfolio (PSCT)
The PowerShares S&P SmallCap Information Technology Portfolio (NASDAQ:PSCT) tracks the S&P SmallCap 600 Capped Information Technology Index. It has managed $556.8 million in its asset base and trades in light average daily volume of about 56,000 shares.
The ETF charges 29 bps in fees per year from investors. Holding 91 securities in its basket, the product is well spread across securities with none holding more than 3.8% share. From an industry look, about one-fourth of the portfolio is allocated toward electronic equipment, followed by semiconductors (20.6%) and software (18.7%). The ETF gained 13.1% in the same timeframe and has a Zacks ETF Rank of 3 or ‘Hold’ rating.
FactorShares PureFunds Drone Economy Strategy ETF (IFLY)
The FactorShares PureFunds Drone Economy Strategy ETF (NYSEARCA:IFLY) fund offers exposure to the emerging commercial drone market by tracking the Reality Shares Drone Index. It holds 44 securities in its basket with double-digit allocation to the top two firms while other firms account for no more than 4.34% of assets. The ETF has amassed $8.1 million in its asset base and it trades in a paltry volume of 4,000 shares per day on average. It charges 75 bps in annual fees and delivered a solid return of 7.7% in the same timeframe (read: Will The Drone ETF Fly After New FAA Rules?).
Global X Internet of Things Thematic ETF (SNSR)
The Global X Internet of Things Thematic ETF (NASDAQ:SNSR) fund follows the Indxx Global Internet of Things Thematic Index and provides exposure to the companies that stand to benefit from the broader adoption of the Internet of Things. Holding 44 stocks, it is moderately concentrated across components with each holding less than 8.8% of assets.
The ETF has accumulated $6.3 million in AUM since its debut three months ago and sees average daily volume of around 12,000 shares. Furthermore, the expense ratio for this ETF comes in at 0.68%. SNSR is up 5.4% in the same time frame (read: Invest in the Internet of Things with This ETF).
The WEAR ETF (WEAR)
The WEAR ETF (BATS:WEAR) offers exposure to the companies that focus on wearable technology devices and/or components of such devices by tracking the EQM Wearables Index. It charges 0.85% in fees per year and sees paltry volume of 2,000 shares. Having debuted last week, WEAR has been seeing solid gains, having added 0.7% in its initial days (read: Wearable Technology ETF Launched).
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