The 10 Best And Worst Alternative ETFs Of 2017

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Includes: DYLS, FTLS, GAA, MATH, QLS, SVXY, TVIX, TVIZ, UVXY, VIIX, VIIZ, VIXM, VIXY, VMAX, VMIN, VXX, VXZ, XIV, XIVH, ZIV
by: Jeff Malec

We can't believe 2017 is almost over. That means it's time to look at the winners and losers of the past year. Since we specialize in most things deemed "alternative" in the investment space, here's a look at the top 10 "Alternative ETFs" via ETF.com. As a disclaimer, we will say that most things labeled alternative are alternative in name only and don't truly find returns unique to the rest of your portfolio.

Top 10 Alternative ETFs of 2017
(Disclaimer: Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results)
Source: ETF.com

We knew VIX ETFs were all the rage in 2017; five of the 10 Top Alternative ETFs are short VIX products! The first place non-VIX product (and long-short equity ETF which we really don't consider as an alternative) made 20% on the year, a successful year by just about anyone's definition. But when you consider a short VIX ETF made almost 10x times the best non-VIX product, it's easy to see why people continue to flood into the VIX market.

Now, for the worst Alternative ETFs of 2017.

Bottom 10 Alternative ETFs
(Disclaimer: Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results)
Source: ETF.com

…and all 10 of the worst Alternative ETFs are long VIX products and short-term products. Granted, in their descriptions, most say these products are not meant to be long-term investments. Seeing a spread between -47% to -93% of long VIX products shows just how important it is to understand how these strategies are packaged.

What about Managed Futures products only? There is only a handful of Managed Futures ETFs out there, so we decided to look at the top and bottom performers of Managed Futures Mutual Funds based on Morningstar's category. Here's the top 10:

Top Managed Futures Mutual Funds
(Disclaimer: Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. We filtered this list to only list one fund per manager.)
Source: Morningstar

And the bottom Managed Futures Mutual Funds:

Bottom Managed Futures Mutual Funds (Disclaimer: Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. We filtered this list to only list one fund per manager.)

And the top 10 and bottom 10 ETFs regardless of classification - (Homebuilders and the China Internet Index are winners!)


(Disclaimer: Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results)
Source: ETF.com

And the bottom 10 (Long VIX and Gold Bugs are losers):

(Disclaimer: Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results)
Source: ETF.com

P.S. - if you're looking to learn more about the alternative investment space, check out our whitepaper, "Why Alternatives."

Disclaimer
The performance data displayed herein is compiled from various sources, including BarclayHedge, RCM's own estimates of performance based on account managed by advisors on its books, and reports directly from the advisors. These performance figures should not be relied on independent of the individual advisor's disclosure document, which has important information regarding the method of calculation used, whether or not the performance includes proprietary results, and other important footnotes on the advisor's track record.

Benchmark index performance is for the constituents of that index only, and does not represent the entire universe of possible investments within that asset class. And further, that there can be limitations and biases to indices such as survivorship, self reporting, and instant history.

Managed futures accounts can subject to substantial charges for management and advisory fees. The numbers within this website include all such fees, but it may be necessary for those accounts that are subject to these charges to make substantial trading profits in the future to avoid depletion or exhaustion of their assets.

Investors interested in investing with a managed futures program (excepting those programs which are offered exclusively to qualified eligible persons as that term is defined by CFTC regulation 4.7) will be required to receive and sign off on a disclosure document in compliance with certain CFT rules The disclosure documents contains a complete description of the principal risk factors and each fee to be charged to your account by the CTA, as well as the composite performance of accounts under the CTA's management over at least the most recent five years. Investor interested in investing in any of the programs on this website are urged to carefully read these disclosure documents, including, but not limited to the performance information, before investing in any such programs.

Those investors who are qualified eligible persons as that term is defined by CFTC regulation 4.7 and interested in investing in a program exempt from having to provide a disclosure document and considered by the regulations to be sophisticated enough to understand the risks and be able to interpret the accuracy and completeness of any performance information on their own.

RCM receives a portion of the commodity brokerage commissions you pay in connection with your futures trading and/or a portion of the interest income (if any) earned on an account's assets. The listed manager may also pay RCM a portion of the fees they receive from accounts introduced to them by RCM.

See the full terms of use and risk disclaimer here.

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