The SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSE: SPY) fell half a percent this week as mixed economic data and a slow start to summer trading eroded recent gains. SPY is now seated firmly near its 50-day moving average, which has been a guiding support zone all year long.
Despite the relatively tepid action in domestic stocks, several international markets experienced big moves. Greek stocks rallied strongly on the hope of a deal prior to June 30, while the China Shanghai Composite fell precipitously for the second week in a row.
The following ETFs represent a sample of the best- and worst-performing funds over the last five trading sessions.
BEST: Wheat and Grain Prices
While the gains in Greek stocks looked healthy this week, wheat prices were the unexpected winners in the commodity space. The Teucrium Wheat Fund (NYSE: WEAT) gained over 12 percent since last Friday.
WEAT is designed to track the daily price fluctuations of an unleveraged basket of wheat futures contracts. The fund currently has just $27 million in total assets and allows investors to play a niche area of the commodity market without delving directly into a futures account.
This ETF is now trading back above its 200-day moving average for the first time in 2015 and its recent move off the lows has been one of the sharpest moves this year. Other grain funds that were impacted by this jump include the iPath Bloomberg Grains Total Return ETN (NYSE: JJG) and Elements MLCX Grains Total Return ETN (NYSE: GRU).
WORST: China A-Shares
Sellers took control of China A-share stocks for the second week in a row and forced both the Market Vectors ChinaAMC SME-ChiNext ETF (NYSE: CNXT) and db X-trackers Harvest CSI 500 China-A Shares Small Cap Fund (NYSE: ASHS) down over 16 percent.
China A-share stocks have been red-hot in 2015 and smaller market cap indexes have been the strongest leaders. While the recent drop has been swift and steep, these two funds are still holding the top spots for year-to-date gains of all U.S.-listed ETFs.
Traders will likely be asking themselves whether this dip will be short-lived or if the momentum is finally turning against the Chinese stock market.
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