Commodity ETF Flows Report: Agriculture Shines; Huge Investor Interest In The Agri ETF (MOO, IAU, SLV, AGQ, XLE, USO, GLD, UNG)

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June 6, 2011 10:36pm NYSE:AGQ NYSE:GLD

Sumit Roy:  Though overall commodity ETF flows were unspectacular last week, one fund continues to attract significant attention week after week.

Fears about a slowdown in the U.S. economy led investors to pull their capital out of commodity-related exchange-traded products last week—the fourth outflow in five weeks. Energy was the primary culprit, as the sector saw withdrawals totaling $779 million. Industrial metals and broad market (multicommodity) ETPs were hit with much more modest outflows, of $86 million and $79 million, respectively.

Investors had a fairly neutral view of precious metals last week, as the sector eked out $89 million in inflows. But the hot sector—agriculture—continued to shine, with $327 million in inflows, the fourth straight week of gains.

Importantly, one fund in particular has been responsible for this strong performance in the ag sector—the Market Vectors Agribusiness ETF (NYSE:MOO). MOO has topped the inflows leaderboard for four weeks and counting, while accumulating over $1.1 billion of investor capital—$361 million of which came just last week.

But while MOO took the top inflows spot last week with a solid showing, the rest of the funds on the top-five list was rather unimpressive. iShares Gold Trust (NYSE:IAU), iShares Silver Trust (NYSE:SLV), ProShares Ultra Silver (NYSE:AGQ) and iPath Dow Jones-UBS Commodity Subindex Total Return ETN (NYSE:DJP) rounded out said list with inflows of $72 million, $62 million, $29 million and $23 million, respectively.

The outflows for the week were driven almost entirely by energy ETPs.

Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund (NYSE:XLE), SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Exploration & Production ETF (NYSE:XOP) and United States Oil Fund (NYSE:USO) witnessed outflows of $298 million, $226 million and $111 million, respectively. Clearly, investors did not discriminate when it came to liquidating their energy ETP positions last week, as they sold both the equity-based XLE and XOP, and the futures-based USO.

Beyond energy, SPDR S&P Metals and Mining ETF (NYSE:XME) and SPDR Gold Trust (NYSE:GLD) took the Nos. 4 and 5 spots on the outflows leaderboard, with $102 million and $60 million, respectively, in redemptions.

Turning to price performance for the week, natural gas products dominated as the commodity rallied on inventory concerns. The United States Natural Gas Fund (NYSE:UNG), United States 12 Month Natural Gas Fund (NYSE:UNL) and the iPath Pure Beta Seasonal Natural Gas ETN (NYSE:DCNG) provided returns of 8.42 percent, 5.66 percent and 5.6 percent, respectively.

Also in the mix was the iPath Dow Jones-UBS Cotton Subindex Total Return ETN (NYSE:BAL) and the iPath Global Carbon ETN (NYSE:GRN), with gains of 6.26 percent and 5.55 percent, respectively.

The bottom price performers list was quite diverse. The Elements Credit Suisse Global Warming Index ETN (NYSE:GWO) and iPath Pure Beta Lead ETN (NYSE:LEDD) were neck and neck, with losses of 6.93 percent and 6.51 percent, respectively. Following closely behind were the iPath Dow Jones-UBS Tin Subindex Total Return ETN (NYSE Arca: JJT), PowerShares DB Silver Fund (NYSE:DBS) and the iShares Silver Trust (NYSE:SLV), which shed 4.67 percent, 4.5 percent and 4.42 percent, respectively.

While we don’t often comment on the volume side of things, this week is notable for the strong interest in tin and lumber (represented by NYSE:WOOD and NYSE:JJT), both which traded 3 times their monthly average volumes just in the last week.

Fund Flows Data: May 27 – June 2, 2011

Commodity Flows By Class

  Net Flows ($, mm) AUM ($, mm) % of AUM
Agriculture 327.51 13,263.41 2.47%
Broad Market -78.81 16,487.34 -0.48%
Energy -778.91 36,118.22 -2.16%
Industrial Metals -85.60 3,573.13 -2.40%
Precious Metals 89.49 96,269.96 0.09%
Total: -526.32 165,712.06 -0.32%


Top 5 Creations (All ETFs)

Ticker Name Net Flows ($,mm) AUM ($,mm) AUM % Change
MOO Market Vectors Agribusiness ETF 360.98 5,341.89 7.25%
IAU iShares Gold Trust 72.11 6,880.73 1.06%
SLV iShares Silver Trust 61.71 11,953.59 0.52%
AGQ ProShares Ultra Silver 29.49 1,071.77 2.83%
DJP iPath Dow Jones-UBS
Commodity Total Return ETN
22.89 3,210.90 0.72%


Top 5 Redemptions (All ETFs)

Ticker Name Net Flows ($,mm) AUM ($, mm) AUM % Change
XLE Energy Select SPDR Fund -298.47 9,313.51 -3.11%
XOP SPDR S&P Oil & Gas
Exploration & Production Fund
-225.91 828.17 -21.43%
USO United States Oil Fund -110.96 1,466.10 -7.04%
XME SPDR S&P Metals and Mining ETF -101.90 1,004.09 -9.21%
GLD SPDR Gold Trust -59.98 60,009.28 -0.10%


Top 5 Weekly Performers (excluding Leverage/Inverse >1,000 Shares Traded)

Ticker Name 1-Week Performance 1-Week Volume AUM ($, mm)
UNG United States Natural Gas Fund 8.42% 108,576,273 2,065.40
BAL iPath Dow Jones-UBS Cotton Total Return ETN 6.26% 467,008 74.20
UNL United States 12 Month Natural Gas Fund 5.66% 120,072 38.78
DCNG iPath Pure Beta Seasonal Natural Gas ETN 5.60% 16,502 4.97
GRN iPath Global Carbon ETN 5.55% 7,772 3.72


Bottom 5 Weekly Performers (Excluding Leverage/Inverse >1,000 Shares Traded)

Ticker Name 1-Week Performance 1-Week Volume AUM ($,mm)
GWO ELEMENTS Credit Suisse
Global Warming Index ETN
-6.93% 4,100 3.73
LEDD iPath Pure Beta Lead ETN -6.51% 1,380 5.39
JJT iPath Dow Jones-UBS Tin Total Return ETN -4.67% 1,854,610 64.34
DBS PowerShares DB Silver Fund -4.50% 702,425 190.32
SLV iShares Silver Trust -4.42% 263,304,285 11,953.59


Top 5 Volume Surprises (>$50mm AUM)

Ticker Name Average Volume (30 Day) 1-Week Volume % of Average
UCI UBS E-TRACS CMCI Total Return ETN 42,984 1,266,706 589.38%
WOOD iShares S&P Global Timber & Forestry
Index Fund
71,289 1,082,934 303.82%
JJT iPath Dow Jones-UBS Tin Total Return ETN 124,124 1,854,610 298.83%
CGW Guggenheim S&P Global Water Index ETF 63,719 619,891 194.57%
FIW First Trust ISE Water Index Fund 24,003 209,716 174.74%

Disclaimer: Data provided by IndexUniverse. All data as of 6 a.m. Eastern the date of publication. Data is believed to be accurate; however, transient market data is often subject to subsequent revision and correction by the exchanges.

Written by Sumit Roy From Hard Assets Investor (HAI) is a research-oriented Web site devoted to sharing ideas about hard assets investing. The site has been developed as an educational resource for both individual and institutional investors interested in learning more about commodity equities, commodity futures and gold (the three major components of the hard assets marketplace). The site will focus on hard assets investing without endorsing or recommending any particular investment product.    

HARDASSETSINVESTOR.comThis article is being distributed courtesy of Copyright All Rights Reserved.

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