Exchange-traded funds tracking Asian markets were among the best performers Thursday, as indices in Japan, China, Hong Kong and Indonesia rose overnight.
Japan's Nikkei 225 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng both soared 2.4% overnight, China's CSI 300 Index gained 1.2%, and Indonesia's Jakarta Index added 0.8%.
PowerShares Golden Dragon Halter USX China
rose 63 cents, or 1.9%, to $33.42. The
iShares FTSE/Xinhua China 25 Index
was higher by $3.03, or 1.7%, to $179.09. The
iShares MSCI Japan Index
was up 23 cents, or 1.6%, to $14.26. The
SPDR S&P China
was adding $1.56, or 1.7%, to $93.85.
Bundled securities following the financial sector were also higher, as enthusiasm for
carried over from the previous session. Last time out, Bear Stearns fueled a rally in financials after rumors swirled that billionaire investor Warren Buffett was interested in buying a stake in the investment bank.
WisdomTree International Financial
was gaining 57 cents, or 2%, to $28.98. The
iShares Dow Jones U.S. Broker-Dealers
was up 38 cents, or 0.7%, to $52.06. The
Ultra Financials ProShares
was rising 12 cents, or 0.2%, to $57.09. The
KBW Regional Banking
added 7 cents, or 0.2%, to $44.50.
Once again, the
United States Natural Gas
ETF was the worst decliner of the session, as natural gas futures declined after a bearish report on natural gas inventories. Natural gas fell 21 cents to $6.83 per million British thermal units. The ETF was lower by $1.33, or 3.4%, to $37.95.
Biotech-related ETFs were also among the worst performers. Shares of
Human Genome Sciences
all were sliding.
PowerShares Dynamic Biotech & Genome
was off 35 cents, or 1.8%, to $19.40. The
First Trust Amex Biotechnology Index
lost 28 cents, or 1.1%, to $25.57. The
SPDR S&P Biotech
was down 32 cents, or 0.6%, to $58.05.