NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The materials sector has underperformed the overall stock market year to date, but investors in Materials Select Sector SPDR (XLB) still had a gain of 6.1% through Christmas Eve vs. 13% for the S&P 500. Before we look at the daily and weekly charts for this exchange-traded fund, here's some background.
Former Dow component Alcoa (AA) set a multiyear intraday high at $17.75 on Nov. 21 vs. the previous high set at $18.47 in April 2011. After setting its 2014 high, the stock declined 19% to as low as $14.41 on Dec. 16. Even after this setback Alcoa has a 2014 year-to-date gain of 48%.
Here's the daily chart for the Materials Select Sector SPDR.
Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith
The daily chart for the materials sector ETF ($49.06) shows that the 200-day simple moving average (green line) provided buying opportunities in April 2013 when this average was $37.19 and in June 2013 when this average was $38.26.
The 200-day SMA is now at $48.72 and has been a magnet since Oct. 2. XLB traded as low as $44.09 on Oct.15 and rallied to its 2014 high at $51.01 on Nov.21.