Whereas funds like SKYY, SOCL, and even FDN are best used in small doses, the PowerShares QQQ (QQQ) is a product I have traditionally felt comfortable using more liberally.
On a number of occasions, I have turned to this product when constructing the core portion of client portfolios. Designed to track the iconic Nasdaq index, the Qs offer expansive exposure to top names in the technology sector. The fund is not solely dedicated to companies like Microsoft (MSFT), Oracle (ORCL) and Intel (INTC), however. Rather, it spreads its assets into all market corners, making it an attractive broad market play for technology enthusiasts.
QQQ could have a problem in the future. As top holding Apple has ballooned in size, it has dominated an increasingly overwhelming slice of the fund's index. Currently, the Cupertino-based consumer giant accounts for 17.5% of its total assets. Apple may have some fuel left in its tank with talk of the iPad 3 beginning to build. However, given this type of top-heavy exposure, if a serious shakeup were to occur in the weeks and months ahead, I may be forced to reconsider the fund's appropriateness as a major portfolio holding.2012 will likely hold a number of exciting developments for the technology industry. With proper planning and plenty of patience, it is possible for retail investors to take advantage of major events down the road. -- Written by Don Dion in Williamstown, Mass.