Yes, ETFs Sometimes Monkey With Stock Prices

May 16, 2012


Strange behavior in the individual stock price of Vestin Realty Mortgage II (NasdaqGS: VRTB) may have been influenced by an unusually large burst of ETF trading, according to a blog by Brendan Conway of Barron’s.

VRTB moved 101,000 shares on May 7, when the stock—on average—trades a few thousand shares a day. That volume coincided with trading volume of 2.5 million shares of the SPDR Dow Jones Total Stock Market ETF (NYSEArca: TMW) during the same time span, said Barron’s.

TMW may have contributed close to 74 percent of VRTB’s volume that day, the blog said, citing research by ETF analyst Neil Leeson of Ned David Research.

That day, the stock topped at $1.73, but closed at $1.59 per share. Yesterday, VRTB shares held steady at $1.51. The influx in trading and price seems to be linked to a new Nevada 529 plan launched by State Street Global Advisors, of which TMW is a part, according to the article.

The following funds were outlined by Leeson, as they may be affected in the near future by large ETF creations or redemptions:

  • Liberty Global (NasdaqGS: LBTYB), by the Fidelity Nasdaq Composite Index Tracking Stock (NYSEArca: ONEQ)
  • Myrexis Inc. (NasdaqGM: MYRX), by the Guggenheim Spin-Off ETF (NYSEArca: CSD)
  • United Security Bancshares (Nasdaq: USBI), by the iShares Russell Microcap Index Fund (NYSEArca: IWC)
  • Perma-Fix Environmental Services (NasdaqGM: PESI), by the Market Vectors Environmental Services Fund (NYSEArca: EVX)


To read Conway’s full perspective, go to

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