In just the first six months of 2020, the S&P 500 has gone from up 5% to down 31%, and is now back to essentially break-even on the year. There have been segments of the stock market that have outperformed - tech and consumer discretionary, in particular, have done fairly well - but gains on the equity side have been harder to come by this year.
That doesn't mean there haven't been gains to be had. In fact, some stock ETFs have knocked it out of the park in 2020.
Many of the funds that have done especially well this year were positioned to benefit from the COVID-19 outbreak. Companies that helped individuals and businesses transition to the "work from home" culture, searched for the vaccines and therapies that would cure the coronavirus or helped us do all of our shopping online have been the biggest winners of 2020.
Let's take a look at 5 ETFs that have delivered gains of more than 30% year-to-date.
WisdomTree Cloud Computing ETF (WCLD)
WCLD is a relative infant in the ETF world - it's still less than one year old - but it's gotten off to a roaring start by posting a 36% gain so far in 2020.
With so many people working remotely today, cloud technology has become vitally important for businesses with employees working from potentially hundreds of different locations. WCLD's focus on workplace technology, cybersecurity and e-commerce has hit the sweet spot of the new COVID economy.
Top holdings include Zoom, Shopify, Docusign and Crowdstrike Holdings.
ARK Genomic Revolution ETF (ARKG)
It would be easy to see the word "genomic" in the fund's name and assume that it's ridden the wave of vaccine development. That's no doubt helped, but it would be doing a disservice to the ARK Funds, who has seen several of its funds deliver incredible returns for years.
ARKG does focus on innovation and advancements in the world of therapeutics, bioinformatics and molecular biology. It has heavy exposure to the biotech sector, which has been another solid performer this year, and has gained 34% this year.
Top holdings include CRISPR Therapeutics, Illumina and Invitae.
Amplify Online Retail ETF (IBUY)
It probably goes without saying that the online shopping industry has seen a huge increase in demand as the economy shut down and brick-and-mortar businesses were forced to shut their doors. Even though the retail sector as a whole continues to struggle, online retail has soared.
IBUY targets companies that derive most of their revenue from online and virtual retail. With the online channel still only accounting for about 12% of all retail sales, this remains an ideal growth play.
Top holdings include Stitch Fix, Lyft, TripAdvisor and Booking Holdings.
O'Shares Global Internet Giants ETF (OGIG)
If you're a fan of Shark Tank, you'll probably recognize the name behind the O'Shares Funds. Mr. Wonderful himself, Kevin O'Leary, manages the company that runs four ETFs with more than $750 million in assets.
The best-performing fund of the group this year has been OGIG, which invests in quality growth companies with a heavy emphasis on e-commerce. As the name suggests, it focuses on the biggest and the best, a strategy that has benefited from large-cap leadership.
Top holdings include Amazon, Alibaba, Microsoft and Alphabet.
ARK Next Generation Internet ETF (ARKW)
I told you the ARK Funds were good. ARKW targets all of the hottest tech trends in the economy today - e-commerce, blockchain, big data, cybersecurity, cloud computing and mobile technology. ARK has become well-known for its huge position in Tesla, accounting for nearly 10% of this fund's holdings, but it's a bet that's paid off in 2020.
Other top holdings include Square, Zillow, Splunk and Xilinx.
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