Turkey ETF Breaking Out


Shares of the iShares MSCI Turkey Investable Market Index Fund (NYSE:TUR) are up nearly two percent Tuesday on volume that looks poised to easily eclipse the daily average. The strong move in one of 2012's top-performing emerging markets ETFs has carried the fund not only to a new 52-week high, but also past critical resistance in the $63 area.

TUR, which has nearly $665 million in assets under management, last traded above $63 in June 2011. Buyers are stepping into the ETF even as tensions between Turkey and Syria escalate. On Tuesday, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) agreed to send Patriot air-defense systems to Turkey's shared border with Syria.

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Last month, Fitch Ratings upgradedTurkey's long-term foreign currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) to BBB- from BB+ and the Long-term local currency IDR to BBB from BB. The outlooks on those ratings are stable.

Those headlines marked Turkey's first taste of an investment grade credit rating in 18 years. TUR has soared 5.4 percent since the Fitch announcement was made. Investors have poured nearly $38 million in new capital into the ETF since Fitch moved Turkey to investment-grade status.

Year-to-date, TUR is up 55.1 percent, a gain that is roughly five times better than the returns offered by the Vanguard MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (NYSE:VWO), the largest emerging markets ETF.

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