As markets re-open their doors on Halloween, investors will be scrambling to make up for lost time. But while today’s trading will be in a frenzy, we wanted to take Halloween day to look back on some of the more frightening commodity performances over the past few years. We found three of the worst commodity ETFs in the trailing five years to give you your share of terror on this holiday [for more commodity ETF news subscribe to our free newsletter].
JJN: Nickel Gets Hammered
Actually, we could have chosen from a wide variety of industrial metal-based funds, as these commodities have been nothing short of pathetic in recent years. The DJ-UBS Nickel Total Return Sub-Index ETN (JJN) has surrendered just over 54% in the trailing 5 years, as a weak economy has made it impossible for industrial metals to keep their heads above water.
USO: Crude Oil Struggles
The United States Oil Fund (USO) measures front-month WTI futures, and has had a rough couple of years. The trailing YTD, 1 year, 3 year, and 5 year performances are all negative for this fund. USO has lost approximately 55% in the last 5 years, which should come as no surprise given that oil prices were sky-high prior to the recession in 2008. 2012 hasn’t been much nicer to this product, as crude oil continues to struggle to put forth any kind of meaningful momentum [see also Can Oil Fix U.S. Unemployment?].
UNG: The Most Horrifying of All
If we really wanted to scare you, we would just post a chart of UNG since its inception, but we didn’t want to go overboard. Instead, we will simply tell you how abysmal this product has been. The last five years have seen UNG lose more than 93% and endure multiple reverse splits just to remain open. That 93%, by the way, was cut short by a 50% rally from UNG earlier in 2012, otherwise the numbers would have been much worse. Natural gas has been showing some signs of momentum in recent months, but it is still a very difficult commodity to trust, making UNG one of the most feared funds of the industry.
Disclosure: Photo courtesy of Matthew Gordon. No positions at time of writing.