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ETF Areas That Make Good Investment Choices for April

Sweta Jaiswal, FRM

The coronavirus outbreak continues to spread with more than 1.34 million confirmed cases and above 74,000 casualties globally, per Johns Hopkins University data. The United States remains on top of the chart with the highest number of coronavirus-infected cases. It recorded in excess of 368,000 cases, with a death toll of more than 10,000. In order to combat the outbreak, President Trump has extended the lockdown until Apr 30. Notably, around 80% of Americans have been put under lockdown as coronavirus cases continue to spike in the United States.

Cloud Computing to the Rescue

In the current scenario, people have to maintain social distancing and work remotely. Resultantly, cloud computing is emerging as a key technology in the fight against coronavirus. Cloud computing and storage have empowered video conferencing, gaming, e-commerce shopping, remote project collaboration, online classes, editing, etc. It is supporting organizations in remotely processing a lot of information, developing and running key applications and services, and also helping employees across the world collaborate while working.

Before the lockdown, companies were already discarding their own data centers to rent computing from Amazon AMZN, Microsoft MSFT and Google GOOGL. However, this shift is expected to speed up now, as millions of employees are working remotely from home. Investors can look at the following ETFs that can gain from the current trend -- First Trust Cloud Computing ETF SKYY, Global X Cloud Computing ETF CLOU and WisdomTree Cloud Computing ETF WCLD (read: ETFs to Gain on Cloud Computing Growth Amid Coronavirus Crisis).

Streaming Services & Social Media Trending Now

As increasing number of people are spending time at home, in line with social-distancing guidelines due to the coronavirus pandemic, they are resorting to streaming for in-house entertainment. In this regard, Ted Sarandos, chief content officer at Netflix NFLX, has commented that the company is seeing an increase in online viewership. Other streaming platforms like Prime Video, Hulu, or Disney+ DIS are also witnessing increased viewership.

Facebook FB is also seeing a significant rise in usage of its services, including Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp. Against this backdrop, let’s take a look at some ETFs that can gain like Vanguard Communication Services ETF VOX, Fidelity MSCI Communication Services Index ETF FCOM, Invesco NASDAQ Internet ETF PNQI, MicroSectors FANG+ ETN FNGS, Invesco Dynamic Media ETF PBS and iShares Evolved U.S. Media and Entertainment ETF IEME (read: Should You Buy Facebook ETFs as Coronavirus Boosts Traffic?).

Robots See Rising Demand

The robotics market is flooded with opportunities as robots are being used for jobs such as sanitizing hospitals, homes and workplaces along with monitoring, surveying, handling and delivering food and medicines. In this context, Dr Susanne Bieller, General Secretary of the International Federation of Robotics, has said that “robots have a great potential of supporting us in the current severe corona pandemic." Against this background, we have shortlisted the following ETFs for our investors to consider: Global X Robotics & Artificial Intelligence ETF BOTZ, ROBO Global Robotics & Automation ETF ROBO, First Trust Nasdaq Artificial Intelligence and Robotics ETF ROBT and iShares Robotics and Artificial Intelligence Multisector ETF IRBO.

ESG Investing Shows Resilience

Environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) investing has been gaining investor attention since the pre-outbreak period. Net inflows to ESG ETFs in the first three months of 2020 came in at around 6.7 billion. At the end of March, total assets of ESG ETFs were $19.1 billion, down from the peak of $20.8 billion in February but still higher than any point in 2019, noted Bloomberg. The numbers mostly indicate brighter prospects for ESG ETFs (read: ESG ETFs Appear Unscathed by the Coronavirus Carnage).

Thus, investors can take a look at the following ETFs like Xtrackers MSCI USA ESG Leaders Equity ETF USSG, Vanguard ESG U.S. Stock ETF ESGV, iShares ESG MSCI USA ETF ESGU and Nuveen ESG Large-Cap Growth ETF NULG.

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