Before the session began, Altair held a successful demonstration of its all-electric vehicle in Norway. Shares surged 43% on the news, and the ETF jumped 41 cents, or 2.3%, to $18.23.
Bundled securities tracking gold and silver futures were also among the winners. After starting the day lower, gold prices were up $4.50 to $739.70 an ounce and silver rallied 29 cents to $13.59 an ounce.
The iShares Silver Trust (SLV) was higher by $1.70, or 1.3%, to $133.58. The Market Vectors Gold Miners (GDX) ETF was up 69 cents, or 1.6%, to $45.31. The SDPR S&P Metals & Mining (XME) rose $1.46, or 2.3%, to $65.56. The PowerShares DB Silver (DBS) was gaining 35 cents, or 1.3%, to $26.40.Oil-related ETFs also gained ground, as crude oil jumped above the $80 level again. Recently, the November crude contract was up $1.84 to $80.86 a barrel. The Ultra Oil & Gas ProShares (DIG) added $3.24, or 3%, to $112.93. The iPath S&P GSCI Crude Oil Index (OIL) was up $1.08, or 2.4%, to $45.84. The United States Oil (USO) ETF was gaining $1.11, or 1.8%, to $61.87. On the other hand, ETFs tracking the chip sector were under pressure. Among individual names, KLA-Tencor (KLAC), Applied Materials (AMAT), Xilinx (XLNX) and Linear Technology (LLTC) all were sliding. The SPDR S&P Semiconductor (XSD) was down $1, or 1.8%, to $54.43. The Ultra Semiconductor ProShares (USD) was off $1.99, or 2.2%, to $87.40. The PowerShares Dynamic Semiconductors (PSI) shed 24 cents, or 1.3%, to $18.75. Telecom and wireless ETFs were also losing ground after Sprint Nextel (S) said late Monday that CEO Gary Forsee will step down immediately. Shares of Sprint were losing 2.5% to $18.03. The Broadband HOLDRs (BDH) slipped 7 cents, or 0.4%, to $16.01. The Wireless HOLDRs (WMH) was down 43 cents, or 0.6%, to $77.17.