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Russia Leads 'BRIC' Fund Performance

Stocks in this article: EWZ RSX TNE

The ING Russia Fund (LETRX) followed in second place, at 15.7%.

The Russia trade is not without risk. If the price of oil slides, earnings of Russian oil companies would suffer as foreign currency reserves are eroded.

India's year-over-year GDP was still growing at an annual pace of 7.6% in the third quarter, better than the 6.2% reading for Russia. Two India funds also made the top 10 list. The EM Capital India Gateway Fund (EMINX) returned 5.5%, while the Nomura Partners India Fund (NPIAX) earned 5.3%.

Best-Performing BRIC and Other Emerging Markets Funds for Week Ended Feb. 12
Fund (Ticker) Rating
Fund Type
1 Week Total Return
Market Vectors - Russia ETF (RSX) E-
Country Fund-Russia
ING Russia Fund (LETRX) E-
Country Fund-Russia
JPMorgan Russia Fund (JRUAX) U
Country Fund-Russia
World Funds Inc - Third Millennium Russia Fund (TMRFX) E-
Country Fund-Russia
T Rowe Price Intl Emerging Europe & Mediterranean Fund (TREMX) E-
Emerging Market-Equity
Metzler/Payden European Emerging Markets Fund (MPYMX) E 
Emerging Market-Equity
Templeton Russia and East European Fund (TRF) D
Country Fund-Russia
EM Capital India Gateway Fund (EMINX) U
Country Fund-India
Nomura Partners India Fund (NPIAX) U
Country Fund-India
Fidelity Emerging Europe Middle East Africa EMEA Fund (FMEAX) U
Emerging Market-Equity
Source: Bloomberg & Ratings

Topping the worst-performer list, down 5.5% for the five-day period, was the Emerging Markets Telecommunications Fund (ETF). Don't be misled by the ticker symbol, ETF, this is a closed-end fund, not an exchange traded fund.

So, while phone-company holdings, such as three Brazilian telecoms, Tele Norte Leste Participacoes SA (TNE), Vivo Participacoes SA (VIV) and Brasil Telecom Participacoes SA (BRP) rose 16.3%, 5.6%, and 3.5%, respectively, the fund fell. The net asset value (NAV) rose fractionally as its discount to NAV increased to 12.3% from 6.6%. One of the declining holdings, at minus 9.2% for the week, Telefonos de Mexico SA (TMX), reported its fifth consecutive quarter of shrinking profit as customers abandon fixed-line phones in favor of mobile phones and new regulations constrict access fees earned by Telmex for use of its network by other telecoms.

Half of the funds on the worst-performing list target Chinese companies. Until demand picks up in the U.S., Chinese companies exporting products to our shores will continue to be under pressure.

At a loss of 3.9% last week, the Claymore/AlphaShares China Real Estate ETF (TAO) slipped, with its holdings of 87% in Hong Kong and 12% in mainland China real estate operating and development companies.

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