NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The information technology sector has quickly become the early-year rally's darling.With companies like Apple ( AAPL) ascending to breathtaking heights, talk of Facebook's anticipated IPO still finding its way into the discussion, and growing confidence driving individuals into market-correlated sectors, it is no wonder that stock traders, market commentators, and analysts can't get enough of this market region. Evidence of tech's popularity and success has shown through in recent days with the Nasdaq index breaking to 3,000. This move, which follows close on the heels of the Dow Jones Industrial Average's ascension to the 13,000 level, marks the first time this point has been breached since the turn of the new millennium.
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. 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.