Market Overview

Take A Bite Out Of Apple With These Obscure ETFs

If financial markets operated in the same fashion as a high school popularity contest, it could be said that Apple (Nasdaq: APPL) might be an $800 stock, not a $400 stock. The latter is the current neighborhood in which the iPad maker resides and despite a topsy-turvy for the Nasdaq, Apple has operated in its own vacuum, surging over 20% year-to-date.

But at $400, the stock is still untouchable for many retail investors and betting on Apple with options can prove costly if you have bad luck and consistently buy the wrong calls. Fortunately, ETFs can ameliorate both situations and since Apple is the second-largest U.S. company by market, there's no shortage of ETFs holding the tech darling.

That said, investors hunting for Apple exposure via ETFs might want to examine funds beyond the known entities like the PowerShares QQQ (Nasdaq: QQQ) and the Technology Select Sector SPDR (NYSE: XLK), though those are fine options in their own right.

Here are some ETFs to consider as Apple plays.

Global X Nasdaq 500 ETF (Nasdaq: QQQV): This newly minted ETF is off to a very nice start. QQQV made its debut on December 5th and has already raked in more than $2.4 million in assets under management. While QQQV isn't a pure tech play, the sector does account for more than 60% of the fund's weight and Apple is the ETF's top holding with an allocation of over 11%.

iShares Morningstar Large Growth Index Fund (NYSE: JKE): The iShares Morningstar Large Growth Index Fund isn't a pure tech play either and we're not sure when Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO), the ETF's third-largest holding, became a growth stock, but we're not going to argue with the fact that Apple is the ETF's top holding with a weight of over 12%. Plus, JKE is actually slightly higher year-to-date. A lot of growth ETFs can't say that. Get real-time trading ideas here.

ProShares Ultra Technology (NYSE: ROM): The ProShares Ultra Technology is a leveraged ETF and we've been highlighting the risks associated with such fare. However, ROM makes for a decent short-term play on Apple as the stock accounted for 17% of the ETF's as of Wednesday's close.

iShares Russell Top 200 Growth Index Fund (NYSE: IWY): OK, we'll admit the iShares Russell Top 200 Growth Index Fund doesn't fit the bill as obscure. Having over $394 million in assets under management does that to an ETF. And when looking at ETF's top-10 holdings, it's not the growth-iest ETF out there as five Dow stocks are found among IWY's 10 largest allocations. Still, Apple leads the way with a weight of over 8%. Have a look at IWY above $31.


ACTION ITEMS:

Bullish:
Traders who believe that Apple is on the rise might want to consider the following trades:
  • Long QQQ. It's still the ETF with the biggest Apple allocation.
  • Save up $4,000 and buy 10 shares of the stock.
  • Long out of the money Apple LEAPs.
Bearish:
Traders who believe that Apple is going to fall may consider alternative positions:
  • Long the ProShares UltraShort Nasdaq (NYSE: QID). If QQQ falls, QID will pop. Short-term trade only.
  • Neither Benzinga nor its staff recommend that you buy, sell, or hold any security. We do not offer investment advice, personalized or otherwise. Benzinga recommends that you conduct your own due diligence and consult a certified financial professional for personalized advice about your financial situation.
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