And they have. Since FAZ launched in November 2008, the security has lost 93% of its value, falling from $71.41 per share last November 6 all the way down to $4.83 per share on Wednesday.
The numbers look more extreme if you measure from the ETF’s peak-to-trough. Using end-of-day closing prices, FAZ rallied in the 10 days after its launch from $71.41 to $165.48 per share. The fund peaked intraday above $200 per share, according to Yahoo Finance. Using those measures, the fund is off either 97% or 98% from its high point.
Such a view makes the success of the fund in attracting assets all that more intriguing. Investors keep pouring money into the fund despite the massive losses.
Or, perhaps I should say, traders are flocking to FAZ. Despite having just $1.6 billion in assets at the end of May, $43 billion worth of FAZ shares traded hands in May. That’s $2.2 billion per day, meaning the fund turned over its entire portfolio every single trading day of the month.