It is hard to believe that 2016 is already half over. I thought it would be a good time to look at the top performing ETFs so far this year. I took the ETFs with the highest YTD returns and eliminated any with daily volume under 250K. See below. 

Top Performing ETFs:

Name

YTD Return %

Volume

DirexionDaily JrGldMnrsBull 3X ETF (JNUG)

885.57

994,044

VelocityShares3x Long Silver ETN (USLV)

179.71

808,418

VanEckVectors Junior Gold Miners ETF (GDXJ)

158.88

11,688,703

ALPSSprottJunior Gold Miners ETF (SGDJ)

141.09

17,203

iShares MSCI Global Gold Miners (RING)

137.37

243,225

VanEckVectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX)

123.03

72,598,757

VelocityShares3x Long Gold ETN (UGLD)

95.79

507,040

SPDR® S&P Metals and Mining ETF (XME)

80.15

4,907,342

iShares MSCI Brazil Capped (EWZ)

49.46

20,371,381

iShares Silver Trust (SLV)

46.32

7,639,553

SPDR S&P® North American Natural Res ETF (NANR)

38.40

266,309

DirexionDaily Russia Bull 3X ETF (RUSL)

37.33

377,645

ProSharesUltraShortNasdaq Biotech (BIS)

29.99

629,755

UBS ETRACS MthlyPy2xLvgMortgREIT ETN (MORL)

28.82

239,900

DirexionDaily Energy Bull 3X ETF (ERX)

28.34

3,947,191

iShares Gold Trust (IAU)

27.76

6,841,807

SPDR® Gold Shares (GLD)

27.43

9,100,173

iShares Latin America 40 (ILF)

26.30

893,310

iShares MSCIGlblMetals & MiningPrdcrs(PICK)

26.28

253,766

First Trust NorthAmerEngyInfrasETF(EMLP)

24.11

428,282


What you should have noticed is a majority of the ETFs on the list are gold or silver related. Typically, this list of top ETFs is a mix from various asset classes and sectors. 

Be aware that some of these are 2X and 3X leveraged. However even some of the non-leveraged ETFs have performed well. Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX) is up 123%, iShares MSCI Brazil Index (EWZ) is up 49% and iShares Silver Trust (SLV) is up 46%. Now let’s compare these results to the major indexes as of last Friday. 

Index

YTD Return %

DJIA

4.14%

S&P 500

4.21%

NASDAQ

-1.01%

Russell 2000

3.44%

 

 

 

As you can see, the major indexes have had very little overall price movement compared to the top performing ETFs. All ETFs, stocks and sectors go through price cycles. Prior to 2016, you may have been shorting the same ETFs that are now the best performers. While the overall markets are moving sideways, there are sectors that are performing well. Do not box yourself in by only looking at one part of the markets. You need to have an open mind and look to the ETFs, stocks, sectors and indexes that are performing the best.  

I hope this was helpful. 

Simpler is Better, 

Tucker 

Check out Tucker's Simpler Trend Trading System for ETFs HERE