Weekly ETF Returns: Japan Funds In Retreat

February 07, 2014

ETFs focused on Japan took it on the chin for the week ended Thursday, Feb. 6.

Returns on Japan-focused ETFs took a dive last week as a result of the appreciation of the yen against the dollar—now 3.2 percent this year, which is hampering the growth story in Japan in 2014.

The WisdomTree Japan Hedged SmallCap Equity (DXJS | C-44) led all Japan-focused ETFs, losing 8.3 percent last week, followed by the SPDR Russell/Nomura Small Cap Japan (JSC | D-91), which was down 7.8 percent and the Shares MSCI Japan Small-Cap (SCJ | B-100), down 7.7 percent.

After rising to 57 percent last year, the Nikkei index has dropped 11.2 percent year-to-date. Losses in Japan were fueled by signs of slower growth in China and the U.S. Also, the Federal Reserve’s plans to begin “tapering” its five years of quantitative easing have given markets pause, since so many investors and analysts consider the Fed’s bond-buying program to be at the center of the stock market’s powerful movement since the 2008 crash.

Amid all the market turmoil, volatility ETFs, including the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN (VXX | A-54) and the VelocityShares VIX Short Term ETN (VIIX | B-54) both climbed 15.8 percent.

The S&P 500 Index edged lower to 1773.43 from 1782.59 the previous week, based in part on investors’ worries over growth in the developed markets and continued troubles in the emerging markets. Sharp losses early in the period were retraced in Wednesday’s and Thursday’s sessions.

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

Ticker Name Weekly Performance Weekly Volume AUM ($, mm)
JO iPath Dow Jones-UBS Coffee Total Return ETN 23.97% 3,077,591 165.51
CAFE iPath Pure Beta Coffee ETN 22.18% 373,529 9.68
VXX iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN 15.75% 299,833,397 748.34
VIIX VelocityShares VIX Short Term ETN 15.75% 1,424,076 11.20
VIXY ProShares VIX Short-Term 15.70% 17,384,781 215.94
JJS iPath Dow Jones-UBS Softs Total Return ETN 11.88% 8,700 6.83
GRN iPath Global Carbon ETN 11.83% 39,690 1.50
SGG iPath Dow Jones-UBS Sugar Total Return ETN 9.75% 119,838 29.28
VIXM ProShares VIX Mid-term 9.67% 624,786 60.72
VIIZ VelocityShares VIX Mid Term ETN 9.65% 209,099 2.07

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

Ticker Name Weekly Performance Weekly Volume AUM ($, mm)
GAZ iPath Dow Jones-UBS Natural Gas Total Return ETN -9.80% 2,094,285 38.94
DXJS WisdomTree Japan Hedged SmallCap Equity -8.28% 235,178 66.22
UNG United States Natural Gas -7.98% 151,486,346 760.49
JSC SPDR Russell/Nomura Small Cap Japan -7.77% 26,570 77.86
SCJ iShares MSCI Japan Small-Cap -7.67% 152,672 127.20
DBJP db X-trackers MSCI Japan Hedged Equity -7.30% 878,258 415.17
DFJ WisdomTree Japan SmallCap Dividend -7.27% 215,742 272.27
DXJ WisdomTree Japan Hedged Equity -7.11% 55,245,719 11,451.69
JPP SPDR Russell/Nomura PRIME Japan -6.37% 154,876 126.87
EWJ iShares MSCI Japan -6.22% 236,987,226 12,935.13

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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