Best/Worst Weekly ETF Returns: Solar Glows

February 15, 2013

Clean energy ETFs dominated in the week ended Thursday, Feb. 14, after Obama's call for an increase in green energy.

Solar energy ETFs rose sharply in the past week, after President Obama used part of his State of the Union address on Tuesday to call for heightened clean energy development and use.

Both the Guggenheim Solar ETF (NYSEArca: TAN) and the Market Vectors Solar Energy ETF (NYSEArca: KWT) shot up over 10 percent—10.75 and 10.21 percent, respectively—landing them in the Nos. 1 and 2 spots on IndexUniverse's top-performers' list.

The PowerShares WilderHill Clean Energy (NYSEArca: PBW) and the First Trust Nasdaq Clean Edge Green Energy (NYSEArca: QCLN) also landed on the top 10 list, climbing 4.66 and 4.59 percent, respectively.

The solid performance in the green energy ETF market came during a week the S&P 500 Index rose a bit less than 1 percent. The index is near five-year highs on widening views—based on largely encouraging economic data—that the U.S. economy is slowly normalizing after the 2008 collapse.

While performance of clean energy funds generally tracks developments in crude markets, the fact that they rose despite a decline in crude prices suggests the market was responding to the Obama speech. It's not clear that anything tangible will come from the president's call, but it's entirely possible. Brent crude oil prices fell 1.73 percent, while West Texas Intermediate crude eased 0.26 percent.

Another notable trend of the week was a bearish sentiment toward gold, as the Global X Explorers (NYSEArca: GLDX) shrank 5.48 percent and the Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners (NYSEArca: GDXJ) decreased 4.25 percent as prices fell to six-month lows.

Top 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 27.04% 7,147 0.79
TAN Guggenheim Solar 10.75% 1,167,071 74.50
KWT Market Vectors Solar Energy 10.12% 56,494 13.81
XSD SPDR S&P Semiconductor 4.69% 831,989 70.60
PBW PowerShares WilderHill Clean Energy 4.66% 2,971,772 144.10
PXJ PowerShares Dynamic Oil & Gas Services 4.66% 767,650 138.54
QCLN First Trust Nasdaq Clean Edge Green Energy 4.59% 24,560 16.28
IEZ iShares Dow Jones U.S. Oil Equipment & Services 4.29% 677,236 393.39
XES SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Equipment & Services 4.26% 520,677 339.08
KOL Market Vectors Coal 4.22% 777,979 256.14

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

Ticker Name Weekly Performance Weekly Volume AUM ($, mm)
VXX iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN -5.48% 152,713,395 1,100.57
VIIX VelocityShares VIX Short Term ETN -5.48% 2,454,847 12.29
GLDX Global X Gold Explorers -5.48% 808,120 37.45
VIXY ProShares VIX Short-Term -5.46% 6,323,902 163.39
SCIN EGShares India Small Cap -5.20% 36,292 23.55
INXX EGShares India Infrastructure -5.05% 38,415 56.53
SCIF Market Vectors India Small-Cap -4.95% 913,093 110.99
GAZ iPath Dow Jones-UBS Natural Gas Total Return ETN -4.59% 492,887 32.96
SMIN iShares MSCI India Small Cap -4.46% 4,699 4.79
GDXJ Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners -4.25% 14,612,855 2,405.27

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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