Best/Worst Weekly ETF Returns: URA, NLR Lead

August 17, 2012

Uranium-focused ETFs shine through with sizable gains in a week when sluggish market action landed the Dow only marginally higher.

A pair of uranium-focused ETFs were among the best-performing funds for the week ended Thursday, Aug. 16, as global nuclear energy demand seems poised to grow despite Japan’s nuclear disaster a year a half ago, all while supplies are tightening.

The $152 million Global X Uranium ETF (NYSEArca: URA) raked in 8.4 percent in gains in the past week, topping performance charts at a time when the Dow Jones industrial average struggled to post a 0.6 gain amid lackluster market action.

The Market Vectors Uranium + Nuclear Energy ETF (NYSEArca: NLR) was also a top performer, with gains of 4.5 percent in the week. NLR has $82 million in assets.

On another front, the iShares MSCI Spain Index Fund (NYSEArca: EWP) was again among the week’s best-performing funds, tagging on gains of nearly 6 percent, as the market continued to look for a positive resolution to the ongoing eurozone crisis.

The fund has now rallied nearly 15 percent in the past month alone, as the market grows confident European policymakers will do everything in their power to protect the euro and help troubled economies such as Spain's and Italy's.

Bottom Dwellers

On the flip side, natural gas strategies and U.S. Treasury funds were among the worst-performing ETFs in the Thursday-to-Thursday period.

Cooler weather forecasts for much of the U.S. pressured natural gas prices in the past week, as milder temperatures lower demand for natural-gas-powered cooling systems. The fall in prices helped push the United States Natural Gas Fund (NYSEArca: UNG) lower by 6.6 percent in a five-day period. Meanwhile, the Teucrium Natural Gas Fund (NYSEArca: NAGS) dropped 5.2 percent.

U.S. Treasurys saw yields hit a three-month high after prices dropped for five consecutive days. Yield moves inversely to prices. In the 10-year notes, yields hit 1.80 percent midweek—its highest level since mid-May.

The Vanguard Extended Duration Treasury ETF (NYSEArca: EDV) lost nearly 5 percent of its value in the period, while the Pimco 25+ Year Zero Coupon U.S. Treasury ETF (NYSEArca: ZROZ) gave back 6.3 percent in gains.


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

Ticker Name Weekly Performance Weekly Volume AUM ($, mm)
URA Global X Uranium 8.44% 704,381 152.28
TDV db-X 2040 Target Date 6.10% 5,953 30.87
EWP iShares MSCI Spain 5.99% 2,527,492 180.48
GRN iPath Global Carbon ETN 5.83% 15,350 1.31
CHEP QuantShares U.S. Market Neutral Value 5.14% 1,222 7.33
GREK Global X FTSE Greece 20 4.76% 39,130 8.20
SNDS Sustainable North American Oil Sands 4.75% 32,665 2.29
NLR Market Vectors Uranium + Nuclear Energy 4.52% 98,986 82.39
XTL SPDR S&P Telecom 4.32% 2,637 4.41
NASI Pax MSCI North American ESG 4.31% 5,469 10.33

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

Ticker Name Weekly Performance Weekly Volume AUM ($, mm)
CVOL C-Tracks Exchange-Traded Notes on the Citi Volatility -6.64% 93,176 5.66
UNG United States Natural Gas -6.59% 50,610,943 1,091.74
ZROZ PIMCO 25+ Year Zero Coupon U.S. Treasury -6.33% 460,888 117.34
JO iPath Dow Jones-UBS Coffee Total Return ETN -5.71% 107,038 24.64
NAGS Teucrium Natural Gas Fund -5.24% 40,107 3.42
EIPO ETRACS Next Generation Internet ETN -5.15% 114,622 5.45
CAFE iPath Pure Beta Coffee ETN -5.10% 14,146 1.22
EDV Vanguard Extended Duration Treasury -4.97% 249,739 206.33
JJS iPath Dow Jones-UBS Softs Total Return ETN -4.85% 86,682 12.55
UNL United States 12 Month Natural Gas -4.81% 105,341 45.44

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.

Find your next ETF

Reset All