One more role ETFs can play is in the tax loss area. ETFs can help you do some fast, quick, easy moves to and a little easier on the taxes. Here is one example say you feel that Ebay is a strong solid stock with great long-term potential. Say your sitting currently on a loss as of right now, but you still really like the stock. So, this is what could do to make it look more attractive on paper. So, say you sell your stock at a loss just for the tax write-off, but in return you still really want the stock of Ebay. So you think or don't want to miss out on anything from Ebay, but remember the rule of the IRS 31 days "wash sale". This is where the role and great way of playing ETFs.
Here is the plan:
You currently own a bio tech at a loss, so you sell the stock for tax purpos only, turn around or even the same day you could purchase a bio ETF with that same stock that you were or had owned, wait 31 days...sell the ETF...buy back the stock.