More than likely, it is just a unique coincidence, but some
with memorable tickers are performing quite well this year. By
"memorable," we mean those ETFs that use tickers that are actual
While there is no empirical evidence to suggest
easy-to-remember ETF tickers result in long-term outperformance
for the underlying funds, tickers are an
integral part of ETF marketing, particularly with
Indeed, what is being seen with select ETFs that sport
memorable tickers this year is probably just a collection of
coincidences. However, there is no getting around the fact that
some of these funds are outpacing comparable rivals in noticeable
Just look at these examples.
PowerShares DWA Emerging Markets Technical Leaders Portfolio
) It can be argued that the PowerShares DWA Emerging Markets
Technical Leaders Portfolio has the best ticker of any ETF out
there, though the "grabbing a slice of PIE" jokes wear thin after
a while. Still, PIE has stood tall in what has been a
dismal year for many diversified emerging markets
The reality is the ticker is not the secret to PIE's success.
The relative strength component to the Dorsey Wright Emerging
Markets Technical Leaders Index is. While rival ETFs have been
dragged down by their exposure to the BRIC countries, South
Africa and South Korea, PIE's relative strength methodology has
kept investors involved with the strongest emerging markets.
Translation: Indonesia, Thailand, Turkey and the Philippines
combine for about 47 percent of PIE's weight. The ETF is up
nearly 11 percent this year compared to a 5.7 percent decline for
the iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index Fund (NYSE:
WisdomTree MidCap Dividend Fund (NYSE:
) Investors can have some with the WisdomTree MidCap Dividend
Fund by referring to it as "The DON" or "DON Corleone." Or they
can simply enjoy the fact that DON provides perhaps the most
credible option among U.S.-focused ETFs for income investors
that want mid-cap exposure
DON, which has $578.2 million in assets under management,
devotes a quarter of its weight to financials. Utilities,
discretionary and industrial names combine for another 47 percent
of the ETF's weight.
More importantly, DON has outperformed the SPDR S&P MidCap
400 ETF (NYSE:
) by 310 basis points this year while being 200 basis points less
PIMCO Total Return ETF (NYSE:
) How another ETF issuer did not get their hands on BOND as a
ticker before PIMCO did is baffling. The memorable ticker is
merely another feather in the BOND's cap and one the ETF does not
need, particularly when it is often referred to as the
Bill Gross ETF
BOND is not yet 14 months old, but in the past year the ETF
has hauled in more than $5 billion in assets to become the
largest actively managed ETF and has returned 10.7 percent. None
of that has to do with the ticker, but hey, it is a good
Failures To be fair, there is ample evidence that memorable
tickers do not always help ETFs and ETNs in terms of returns.
This year, it is commodities ETFs and ETNs that support that
assertion. Agriculture commodities funds are among the most
egregious offenders. The Market Vectors Agribusiness ETF (NYSE:
) is sporting a small year-to-date loss, but the iPath DJ-UBS
Livestock TR Sub-Index ETN (NYSE:
) and the Teucrium Corn Fund (NYSE:
) are both lower by 10 percent.
Stretching to call this one "nugget," the Direxion Daily Gold
Miners Bull 3X Shares (NYSE:
) has been locked in a death spiral that shows no signs of
abating. NUGT's April 2 reverse split . Today, NUGT languishes
For more on ETFs, click .
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment
advice. All rights reserved.
Profit with More New & Research
. Gain access to a streaming platform with all the information
you need to invest better today.
Click here to start your 14 Day Trial of Benzinga