Best/Worst Weekly ETF Returns: DXJ, DBJP Rise

February 01, 2013

Currency-hedged exposure to Japan continues to resonate with investors, while gold miner ETFs faded in the week ended Thursday, Jan. 31.

Both of the ETF market's currency-hedged Japan equities ETFs were among the best-performing funds in the past week, rising above the broad equity market as Japan continued to work on finding a way out of decades of deflation.

The WisdomTree Japan Hedged Equity ETF (NYSEArca: DXJ) and the db X-trackers MSCI Japan Hedged Equity ETF (NYSEArca: DBJP) rallied 4.6 percent and 4.5 percent, respectively, in the past five days. DXJ's performance was accompanied by hefty trading volume.

The gains came as the Dow Jones industrial average tagged on a mere 35 points in the week, or gains of 0.25 percent, to close Thursday at 13,860.58.

Japan's new government has made reviving the Japanese economy a priority through various stimulus measures that are designed to boost the country's exports and weaken the yen. The funds tapping into the third-largest economy in the world are also benefiting from a growing risk-on move toward Asian equities among many investors.

Indeed, investors have been embracing these strategies, pouring assets into them as they rise. DXJ attracted over $1 billion in January alone, and now boasts $2.45 billion in total assets.

Aside from Japan-focused funds, it's worth noting that the United States Gasoline Fund (NYSEArca: UGA) also had a stellar week in terms of performance, ranking among the week's top 10 funds.

UGA rallied 5.4 percent in five days, reflecting a soaring energy sector, which has so far in 2013 been the best-performing U.S. sector, as IndexUniverse ETF analyst Paul Baiocchi recently pointed out in a blog.

Gold Miners Lag

On the flip side, gold miner ETFs were some of the worst-performing funds of the week, mired by expectations of another "dismal" earnings season for gold miners, analyst Sumit Roy said.

"Profits for the miners just haven't kept up with the price of gold due to rising cost pressures, and that's likely to be evident again in the coming weeks as these companies report earnings," Roy said.

"The two heavyweights in the sector, Barrick Gold and Newmont Mining, are sitting near 52-week lows," he added.

The iShares MSCI Global Gold Miners Index Fund (NYSEArca: RING) and the $7.7 billion Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSEArca: GDX) bled 4.2 percent and 3.7 percent, respectively.

Still, one of the worst-performing ETFs this past week was the iShares MSCI Turkey Investable Market ETF (NYSEArca: TUR), which slipped 8.2 percent in a week when the U.S. stock market rose slightly.

Turkey is one of the most important economies in the Middle East and one that has been struggling to insulate itself from a spillover crisis from neighboring countries like Syria and Egypt.

TUR is the only ETF in the market today to serve up focused exposure to Turkish equities. The fund has $838 million in assets.


Top 10 Weekly Performers, Excluding Leverage/Inverse Funds and <1,000 Shares Traded

Ticker Name Weekly Performance Weekly Volume AUM ($, mm)
VIXY ProShares VIX Short-Term 5.97% 5,922,512 156.17
VNM Market Vectors Vietnam 5.94% 4,405,664 385.69
VIIX VelocityShares VIX Short Term ETN 5.93% 1,814,428 13.71
VXX iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN 5.93% 173,030,180 1,110.64
JJN iPath Dow Jones-UBS Nickel Total Return ETN 5.63% 11,165 6.43
UGA United States Gasoline 5.37% 224,248 70.09
DXJ WisdomTree Japan Hedged Equity 4.68% 11,960,356 2,452.91
DBJP db X-trackers MSCI Japan Hedged Equity 4.51% 51,495 5.62
PXE PowerShares Dynamic Energy Exploration & Production 4.09% 316,630 90.96
EWD iShares MSCI Sweden 4.04% 1,263,973 395.45

Bottom 10 Weekly Performers, Excluding Leverage/Inverse Funds and <1,000 Shares Traded

Ticker Name Weekly Performance Weekly Volume AUM ($, mm)
GRN iPath Global Carbon ETN -23.23% 8,301 0.49
TUR iShares MSCI Turkey Investable Market -8.18% 3,421,209 838.88
TAN Guggenheim Solar -4.57% 415,471 63.36
GAZ iPath Dow Jones-UBS Natural Gas Total Return ETN -4.40% 370,962 35.40
KWT Market Vectors Solar Energy -4.32% 29,228 12.46
RING iShares MSCI Global Gold Miners -4.21% 135,896 28.37
GDX Market Vectors Gold Miners -3.69% 102,703,310 7,700.84
UNG United States Natural Gas -3.34% 40,844,132 1,074.22
CHIM Global X China Materials -3.28% 29,408 2.75
PSAU PowerShares Global Gold and Precious Metals -3.25% 29,944 33.84

Disclaimer: All data as of 6 a.m. Eastern time the date the article is published. Data is believed to be accurate; however, transient market data is often subject to subsequent revision and correction by the exchanges.


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