Updated from 2:26 p.m. EDT with new stock prices
Exchange-traded funds tracking commodity prices were among the best performers Thursday, as crude, gold and silver futures were on the rise.
The December front-month crude contract surged to $90.46 a barrel, gold futures were up to $767.30 an ounce and silver was at $13.84 an ounce.
The iShares Silver Trust (SLV) was gaining $3.21, or 2.38%, to $137.97. The PowerShares DB Oil (DBO) was higher by $1.04, or 3.32%, to $32.39. The iShares Comex Gold Trust (IAU) tacked on 47 cents, or 0.62%, to $76.16.Bundled securities tracking financials also were rebounding a day after Merrill Lynch's (MER) greater-than-expected $7.9 billion writedown. While Merrill still traded lower Thursday, shares of Fannie Mae (FNM), CME Group (CME) and Charles Schwab (SCHW) were all slightly higher. The Ultra Financials ProShares (UYG) jumped $2.35, or 4.70%, to $52.35. The Internet Infrastructure HOLDRs (IIH) was also among the winners of the day thanks to a 12.62% jump in shares of Akamai Technologies (AKAM). After Wednesday's close, Akamai said that third-quarter earnings soared 73% from a year ago. Recently, the Internet Infrastructure HOLDRs was rising by 14 cents, or 2.50%, to $5.73. On the other hand, chip-related ETFs were suffering again, saddled by a 3.78% decline in Applied Materials (AMAT). Earlier, RBC Capital Markets downgraded the chipmaker to sector perform from outperform, citing slowing demand. Additionally, Altera (ALTR) and Broadcom (BRCM) continued to slide in the wake of their earnings reports released after Tuesday's close. The Ultra Semiconductor ProShares (USD) was losing $3.50, or 4.26%, to $78.61. The PowerShares Dynamic Semiconductors (PSI) shed 67 cents, or 3.65%, to $17.68. The iShares S&P GTSI Semiconductor (IGW) sank by $2.15, or 3.30%, to $63.01.