Billions Wiped Out as Stock-Safety Trade on Wall Street Misfires
Reeling from a bear market last year, beaten-up investors decided to send more than $60 billion to exchange-traded funds focusing on dividends.
Eleven months later, the trade is misfiring.
Rather than give shelter in a stormy season, the largest dividend ETFs have been left behind by a tech-obsessed market whose biggest proxies have surged 15% or more. At the bottom of the leader board is the $18 billion iShares Select Dividend ETF (ticker DVY), down 5.4% on a total return basis after all-in bets on utilities and financial stocks fizzled.
It’s the latest lesson on the dangers of market timing. Investors wanted exposure to companies with a history of paying out profits as a precaution amid the Federal Reserve’s most aggressive tightening cycle in 40 years. Instead they were saddled with underperforming companies that proved especially vulnerable when yields shot higher.