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Two Housing Index ETFs Shut Down

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- As investors digest Tuesday's data from the Case-Shiller housing indexes, they will have one less tool to work with.

On Monday, MacroShares shuttered two ETFs that allowed investors to make bullish and bearish bets on the Case-Shiller Composite-10 Home Price Index.

The Major Metro Housing Up (UMM) ETF and Major Metro Housing Down (DMM) ETF, is the third paired ETF group from MacroShares to close down. MacroShares has also shelved two sets of oil funds since 2008, as structural problems and oil volatility sunk the pairs.

While investors pay particular attention to the release of housing data, UMM and DMM failed to capture its intended audience. These two funds recently reached an early termination trigger when their assets on deposit fell under $50 million.

According to the latest Case-Shiller report, U.S. home prices fell at a slower annual rate in October. While housing declines in major metropolitan areas do not appear to be getting worse, the data show that the indexes are flat when compared with the previous month.

The goal of MacroShares' funds was to allow investors to bet on the direction of the Case-Shiller indexes and the prospects for major metropolitan housing. The paired funds were unable to attract enough investor assets to continue their investment strategy.

The fate of the MacroShares funds should be of particular concern to ETF investors, who face an increasingly broad range of choices when selecting strategies. The failure of the paired-fund approach continues to raise concerns about the future of non-traditional ETF strategies.
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