Inverse ETF Overview

Inverse ETFs are powerful and complex trading instruments. They allow traders to benefit from price declines in major ETFs. For example, if the SPDR S&P 500 fund (SPY) goes down 1% on one day, you should expect that the price of ProShares Short S&P 500 ETF (SH) goes up 1% the same day. Inverse ETFs can use leverage as well to magnify their returns. Thus, these inverse-leveraged ETFs need to be handled with care.

Keep in mind that inverse ETFs deliver the desired returns over prespecified periods only—usually one day. Thus, the stated multiple (e.g., - 2x) of the fund's underlying index only attempts to do so over one-day holding periods. Consequently, inverse ETFs can be inappropriate investment vehicles to hold if you have a significantly longer holding period in mind.

With 117 ETFs traded in the U.S. markets, Inverse ETFs gather total assets under management of $11.79B. The average expense ratio is 1.01%. Inverse ETFs can be found in the following asset classes:

  • Equity
  • Commodities
  • Alternatives
  • Fixed Income

The largest Inverse ETF is the ProShares Short S&P500 SH with $1.81B in assets. In the last trailing year, the best performing Inverse ETF was the SVXY at 353.87%. The most-recent ETF launched in the Inverse space was the ProShares UltraPro Short Communication Services Select Sector ETF SCOM in 01/15/19.


EXIV VelocityShares 1X Daily Inverse VSTOXX Futures ETN 22.87%
GASX Direxion Daily Natural Gas Related Bear 3x Shares 15.80%
DRIP Direxion Daily S&P Oil & Gas Exp. & Prod. Bear 3X Shares 12.79%
ZIV VelocityShares Daily Inverse VIX Medium-Term ETN 12.50%
SVXY ProShares Short VIX Short-Term Futures ETF 9.94%


SOXS Direxion Daily Semiconductor Bear 3x Shares -33.07%
DRV Direxion Daily MSCI Real Estate Bear 3x Shares -25.22%
WDRW Direxion Daily Regional Banks Bear 3X Shares -22.95%
TECS Direxion Daily Technology Bear 3X Shares -22.83%
BOM DB Base Metals Double Short ETN -20.42%


SQQQ ProShares UltraPro Short QQQ 494.04
SH ProShares Short S&P500 474.92
SDS ProShares UltraShort S&P500 174.73
SPXU ProShares UltraPro Short S&P500 129.60
SOXS Direxion Daily Semiconductor Bear 3x Shares 104.01


DGAZ VelocityShares 3X Inverse Natural Gas ETN -79.63
TBT ProShares UltraShort 20+ Year Treasury -75.03
CHAD Direxion Daily CSI 300 China A Share Bear 1X Shares -31.64
TBF ProShares Short 20+ Year Treasury -22.58
SCO ProShares UltraShort Bloomberg Crude Oil -16.54


SOXS Direxion Daily Semiconductor Bear 3x Shares 107.21%
GASX Direxion Daily Natural Gas Related Bear 3x Shares 66.19%
DSLV VelocityShares 3X Inverse Silver ETN 64.11%
JDST Direxion Daily Junior Gold Miners Index Bear 3X Shares 51.46%
ZBIO ProShares UltraPro Short Nasdaq Biotechnology 36.67%


CHAD Direxion Daily CSI 300 China A Share Bear 1X Shares -65.96%
LACK Direxion Daily Consumer Staples Bear 3X Shares -55.08%
PASS Direxion Daily Consumer Discretionary Bear 3X Shares -54.65%
SPDN Direxion Daily S&P 500 Bear 1X Shares -38.76%
DGAZ VelocityShares 3X Inverse Natural Gas ETN -35.66%

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