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Top 10 Agricultural Commodity ETFs

Stocks in this article: DBA JJG JJA CORN SGG BAL RJA

#6: iPath Cotton ETN (BAL)


BAL follows the Dow Jones-UBS Cotton Subindex Total Return Index which is a single commodity consisting of rolling over one cotton futures contract. The fund was launched in June 2008. The expense ratio is .75%. AUM equal $45 million and average daily trading volume is 51K shares. As of mid-December 2011 the YTD return was -24.05%.

Holdings consist of a rollover of cotton futures contracts.

#7: Elements Rogers International Agriculture ETN (RJA)


RJA follows the Rogers International Commodity Index-Agricultures Total Return which is an index of 20 agricultural commodity futures contracts and is a sub-index of the Rogers International Commodity Index. The fund was launched in October 2007. The expense ratio is .75%. AUM equal $45 million and average trading volume is less than 400K shares. As of mid-December 2011 the YTD return was -21%.


#8: iPath Coffee ETN (JO)

JO follows the Dow Jones-UBS Coffee Subindex Total Return which is another single commodity product investing in a single coffee futures contract which is continuously rolled-over. The fund was launched in June 2008. The expense ratio is .75%. AUM equal $26 million and average daily trading volume is less than 20K shares. As of mid-December 2011 the YTD return was -11.70%.

Holdings consist of rolling over coffee futures contracts.

#9: iPath Livestock ETN (COW)

COW follows the Dow Jones-UBS Livestock Subindex Total return which is currently composed of two livestock commodities--lean hogs and live cattle--which are traded and rolled over on U.S. exchanges. The fund was launched in October 2007. The expense ratio is .75%. AUM equal $110 million and average daily trading volume is 70K shares. As of mid-August 2011 the YTD return -5.00%.

#10: UBS Bloomberg Food ETN (FUD)


FUD follows the UBS Bloomberg CMCI Food Index Total Return Index which provides direct exposure to a basket of 11 futures contracts from agricultural and livestock sectors. The fund was launched in April 2008. The expense ratio is .65%. AUM equal $40 million and average daily trading volume is less than 10K shares. As of mid-August 2011 the YTD return was -13%.

More from ETF Digest:

Direct commodity related ETPs (ETFs & ETNs) are a good add to most portfolios contrary to conventional wisdom perhaps and a poor image. The key to this belief is that they're non-correlated generally to most conventional stock and bond portfolio allocations. For most investors it is probably best they consider an overall commodity tracking ETP which is representative of the entire complex. 

It's also important to remember that ETF sponsors have their own competitive business interests when issuing products which may not necessarily align with your investment needs. New ETFs from highly regarded and substantial new providers are also being issued. These may include Charles Schwab's ETFs and Scottrade's Focus Shares which both are issuing new ETFs with low expense ratios and commission free trading at their respective firms. These may also become popular as they become seasoned. 

For further information about portfolio structures using technical indicators like DeMark and other indicators, take a free 14-day trial at ETF Digest . Follow us on Twitter and Facebook as well and join our group conversations.

You may address any feedback to:   

The ETF Digest has no current positions in the featured ETFs.

(Source for data is from ETF sponsors and various ETF data providers)


This commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet guest contributor program. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of TheStreet or its management.

Dave Fry is founder and publisher of ETF Digest, Dave's Daily blog and the best-selling book author of Create Your Own ETF Hedge Fund, A DIY Strategy for Private Wealth Management, published by Wiley Finance in 2008. A detailed bio is here: Dave Fry.

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