Exchange-traded funds tracking basic materials were among the top performers of Wednesday's session, thanks to a nearly 2% gain in
Before the opening bell, Bear Stearns downgraded
to peer perform from outperform. Last month, Alcoa made a $27 billion bid for Alcan, and Bear Stearns said it was doubtful that Alcan would receive a rivaling bid.
Ultra Basic Materials ProShares
ETF was recently adding $1.88, or 2.2%, to $87.16. The
Materials Select Sector SPDR
was gaining 56 cents, or 1.4%, to $40.12. The
iShares Dow Jones U.S. Basic Materials
ETF was higher by 87 cents, or 1.3%, to $69.48.
Energy-related ETFs were also among the winners Wednesday, as the latest read on crude and gasoline stocks had oil and gas prices moving higher.
The Energy Department's weekly inventory report showed a meager gain of 100,000 barrels in crude inventories. Gasoline stocks were unchanged from last week, and distillate stocks rose by only 300,000 barrels. The front-month July crude contract was up 33 cents to $65.68 a barrel, and gasoline was adding 2 cents at $2.14 a gallon.
SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Equipment & Services
ETF was adding 87 cents, or 2.4%, to $36.15. The
Oil Services HOLDRs
was higher by $3.44, or 2.1%, to $170.56. The
iShares Dow Jones U.S. Oil Equipment Index
ETF was recently up $1.12, or 1.9%, to $56.06. The
PowerShares Dynamic Oil & Gas Services
was rising 51 cents, or 2.1%, to $25.04.
B2B Internet HOLDRs
ETF was also among the gainers of the day as holding
added 2.1%. The ETF was recently higher by 4 cents, or 2.7%, to $2.29.
On the losing side, the
iShares Dow Jones U.S. Healthcare Provider
ETF was among the few decliners, down 0.5%. The ETF suffered from losses in holdings
The iShares Dow Jones U.S. Healthcare Provider was down 36 cents to $59.40.
Internet Infrastructure HOLDRs
ETF was also losing ground, due to declines of 1.2% or more in holdings
. The ETF was recently lower by 3 cents, or 0.6%, to $5.39.