Energy stocks have struggled mightily so far in 2012, as soft demand for petroleum products and progress toward alternative sources of energy have weighed on this sector. Despite the recent challenges, allocations to energy stocks remain a key component of many investing strategies, and this sector is well represented in the portfolios of both buy-and-hold investors and more active tactical traders [see Energy Bull ETFdb Portfolio].
For those seeking to overweight energy stocks, there are a number of ETFs that offer exposure to this sector. The Energy Equities ETFdb Category consists of nearly 30 exchange-traded products, including domestic and international funds, as well as products targeting narrow segments of this market such as exploration and production, natural gas, and coal.
Cheapest Energy Equity ETFs
There is a wide range of expenses in this ETFdb Category; some funds charge as little as 18 basis points while others have expense ratios over 0.80% annually.
Commission Free Energy Equity ETFs
There are three ETFs in the Energy Equity ETFdb Category that are eligible for commission free trading, including:
- Focus Morningstar Energy Index ETF (FEG): Scottrade
- Energy ETF (VDE): Vanguard
- China Energy ETF (NYSEARCA:CHIE): E*TRADE, Interactive Brokers
Most Heavily Traded Energy Equity ETF
On an average day, the ETFs in the Energy Equity ETFdb Category trade more than 27 million shares. The most heavily traded ETF in this category is the Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE), which has an average daily volume of about 15 million shares.
|Realtime Ratings: Energy ETFs|
|Liquidity||Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE)||A+|
|Expenses||Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE)||A+|
|Performance||Dynamic Energy (NASDAQ:PXI)||A+|
|Volatility||Focus Morningstar Energy Index ETF (FEG)||A+|
|Dividend||Market Vectors Oil Services ETF (NYSEARCA:OIH)||A+|
|Concentration||MSCI Global Energy Producers Fund (NYSEARCA:FILL)||A+|
Best Performing Energy Equity ETFs
The performance of energy equity ETFs is all over the board, especially during the last year. As of June 4, 2012, the best performing Energy Equity ETFs are as follows:
|1 Year||Dynamic Energy (PXI)||-14.51%|
|3 Years||Dynamic Energy (PXI)||+55.34%|
|5 Years||Dynamic Energy (PXI)||+5.17%|
|As of 6/4/2012|
Highest-Yielding Energy Equity ETFs
Energy Equity ETFs aren’t generally known for high dividend payouts, but some products in this ETFdb Category have meaningful dividend yields (as of June 4, 2012):
- Canadian Energy Income ETF (NYSEARCA:ENY): 3.90%
- MSCI ACWI ex US Energy Sector Index Fund (NYSEARCA:AXEN): 3.13%
Most Balanced Energy Equity ETFs
When comparing potential ETF investments, it is important to evaluate how deep and balanced the underlying portfolios are. Depth refers to how many individual securities comprise an ETF, while balance refers to how “top heavy” a product is–what percentage of assets are concentrated in the 10 largest individual positions.
- Deepest Energy Equity ETF: The MSCI Global Energy Producers Fund (FILL) has approximately 300 individual holdings. The Energy GEMS ETF (NYSEARCA:OGEM), Market Vectors Oil Services ETF (OIH), and S&P SmallCap Energy Portfolio (NASDAQ:PSCE) are the “shallowest” ETFs, with 25 individual holdings.
- Most Balanced Energy Equity ETF: The SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Explor & Product (NYSEARCA:XOP) has just 16.48% of its holdings in the top ten positions. At the other end of the spectrum, the Market Vectors Oil Services ETF (OIH) has over 70% of assets in the top ten stocks.
Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.
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