NEW YORK (
) -- Recession or not, the holidays are approaching, and cost-conscious investors will hit Internet sites like
to ferret out the best price on popular goods.
Rather than trying to pick a retail fund for recession holiday shopping, consider the
First Trust Dow Jones Internet Index Fund
, an ETF that is in the right place at the right time.
FDN tracks 41 companies that generate at least 50% of their annual sales from the Internet. This group is selected using a modified-market cap methodology that picks from companies that have a stock price of greater than $10 and a market cap of at least $100 million. FDN is rebalanced quarterly, with a net expense ratio of 0.60%.
FDN has advanced 23% in the past three months and is up more than 70% year to date.
The largest two sectors represented in FDN's portfolio are consumer discretionary and information technology, with 18.48% and 70.36% allocations respectively. FDN's top 10 holdings comprise 51% of the funds assets.
FDN's top holding --
-- stands at the nexus of the Internet shopping experience. GOOG's solid quarterly earnings suggest that this Internet giant has weathered the economic malaise effectively. Google Shopping, a key component of the roster, helps to centralize merchants and provide easier "checkout" for consumers seeking to compare the same item on different sites.
, FDN's second largest component, has seen solid growth overseas even as consumer spending has been curtailed back home. Long considered a one-stop-shop for many holiday investors, AMZN is a hub for merchants and consumers alike. This shopper-conscious center will wrap and ship holiday purchases for the home shopper.
FDN's third and fourth largest holdings,
make up 12% of the portfolio and also represent shopping opportunities.
Like GOOG, YHOO has developed innovative shopping technology that allows consumers to compare similar products at different retailers. eBay has the potential to attract low-cost shoppers looking to bag presents for the season.
Also included in FDN's lineup are discount travel dealers
. Travelers looking for last minute tickets will frequent these sites as the holidays draw closer, trying to get the best deal on flights and hotels.
FDN is a solid play for the holiday season and subsequent returns. While it may be difficult to determine which retailer will win out with frugal shoppers, one thing is for sure: People will want to find the best price, now more than ever. Bargin hunters should benefit from this portfolio.
-- Written by Don Dion in Williamstown, Mass.
At the time of publication, Dion did not hold positions in any equities mentioned.
Don Dion is president and founder of
, a fee-based investment advisory firm to affluent individuals, families and nonprofit organizations, where he is responsible for setting investment policy, creating custom portfolios and overseeing the performance of client accounts. Founded in 1996 and based in Williamstown, Mass., Dion Money Management manages assets for clients in 49 states and 11 countries. Dion is a licensed attorney in Massachusetts and Maine and has more than 25 years' experience working in the financial markets, having founded and run two publicly traded companies before establishing Dion Money Management.
Dion also is publisher of the Fidelity Independent Adviser family of newsletters, which provides to a broad range of investors his commentary on the financial markets, with a specific emphasis on mutual funds and exchange-traded funds. With more than 100,000 subscribers in the U.S. and 29 other countries, Fidelity Independent Adviser publishes six monthly newsletters and three weekly newsletters. Its flagship publication, Fidelity Independent Adviser, has been published monthly for 11 years and reaches 40,000 subscribers.