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Below are the 20 hottest ETFs (excluding leveraged funds) at the close of the year December 31st, based on the 6-month performance.
Data includes leveraged ETFs and the data source is FINVIZ.com. The unleveraged list is the second table. For real time tracking of this list, see the right hand side of the page here.

Real estate, emerging markets, and levered long ETFs are prominent themes.

Ticker Company INO Trend Analysis Performance (Quarter) Half Year Year 200-Day SMA
BDD PowerShares DB Base Metals Dble Long ETN Here 55.59% 110.99% 228.25% 64.48%
URE Ultra Real Estate ProShares Here 26.42% 110.06% 11.49% 47.00%
EDC Direxion Daily Emrg Mkts Bull 3X Shares Here 26.84% 102.76% 205.41% 49.46%
UYM Ultra Basic Materials ProShares Here 28.71% 94.16% 126.81% 41.19%
UPRO UltraPro S&P500 ProShares Here 25.86% 87.66%
21.51%
TYH Direxion Daily Technology Bull 3X Shares Here 25.15% 84.58% 189.62% 43.94%
TNA Direxion Daily Small Cap Bull 3X Shares Here 17.94% 83.51% 42.42% 39.80%
BRF Market Vectors Brazil Small-Cap ETF Here 27.35% 78.31%
32.68%
MWJ Direxion Daily Mid Cap Bull 3X Shares Here 9.23% 78.26%
31.02%
FAS Direxion Daily Financial Bull 3X Shares Here 2.11% 78.11% -41.46% 21.58%
UVU Ultra Russell MidCap Value ProShares Here 16.52% 71.59% 57.31% 34.27%
ROM Ultra Technology ProShares Here 29.38% 69.99% 146.39% 42.19%
USD Ultra Semiconductor ProShares Here 29.16% 68.21% 137.50% 41.50%
UXI Ultra Industrials ProShares Here 17.25% 67.82% 41.18% 31.18%
BGU Direxion Daily Large Cap Bull 3X Shares Here 11.49% 67.23% 45.82% 27.21%
RTG Rydex 2x S&P Select Sector Technology Here 28.63% 66.84% 120.99% 40.60%
FAA Claymore/NYSE Arca Airline Here 18.31% 66.36%
33.70%
UCC Ultra Consumer Services ProShares Here 17.10% 65.40% 64.67% 30.54%
EET Ultra MSCI Emerging Mkts ProShares Here 19.87% 65.26%
22.21%
QLD Ultra QQQ ProShares Here 23.92% 62.87% 121.20%
Ticker Company INO Trend Analysis Performance (Quarter) Half Year Year 200-Day SMA
BRF Market Vectors Brazil Small-Cap ETF Here 27.35% 78.31%
32.68%
FAA Claymore/NYSE Arca Airline Here 18.31% 66.36%
33.70%
KOL Market Vectors Coal ETF Here 24.85% 61.11% 144.72% 36.77%
FIO iShares FTSE NAREIT Industrl/Offc Cp Idx Here 12.84% 56.46% 30.54% 27.56%
ICF iShares Cohen & Steers Realty Majors Here 14.67% 54.65% 25.14% 27.55%
RWR SPDR Dow Jones REIT Here 14.28% 53.78% 28.15% 27.33%
FRI First Trust S&P REIT Here 14.01% 53.00% 28.51% 26.89%
RSX Market Vectors Russia ETF Here 15.22% 52.15% 139.19% 29.44%
SLX Market Vectors Steel ETF Here 24.46% 51.75% 112.87% 33.32%
PKOL PowerShares Global Coal
22.65% 51.65% 133.60% 31.69%
PSR PowerShares Active U.S. Real Estate
14.33% 51.44% 30.52% 27.66%
DNH WisdomTree Pacific ex-Japan Equity Inc
8.66% 50.60% 78.80% 25.97%
BDG PowerShares DB Base Metals Long ETN
24.04% 50.44% 88.84% 31.30%
IYR iShares Dow Jones US Real Estate
13.61% 49.87% 30.57% 25.85%
FTY iShares FTSE NAREIT Real Estate 50
14.52% 49.62% 26.92% 26.12%
REZ iShares FTSE NAREIT Resid Plus Cp Idx
15.22% 48.66% 20.75% 25.68%
IFNA iShares FTSE EPRA/NAREIT North America
12.85% 48.55% 35.73% 28.24%
RPV Rydex S&P 500 Pure Value
7.60% 47.72% 52.38% 23.75%
EWZ iShares MSCI Brazil Index
16.65% 47.57% 121.99% 28.83%
GML SPDR S&P Emerging Latin America
17.67% 47.52% 104.13% 28.88%

Author's disclosures: No position.

Source: 20 Top Performing ETFs for December