TSC Ratings provides exclusive stock, ETF and mutual fund ratings and commentary based on award-winning, proprietary tools. Its "safety first" approach to investing aims to reduce risk while seeking solid outperformance on a total return basis.
ProShares Short Oil & Gas
is an exchange traded fund that received one of TheStreet.com Ratings' highest marks in an initial ranking. Forty-one ETFs that accrued a sufficient track record of risk and performance data by the end of June got ratings for the first time.
The ProShares energy fund, which rose 24% in the 12 months through June, attempts to track the inverse of the daily performance of the Dow Jones U.S. Energy Sector Index, whose members have fallen over the past year.
At this time last year, the spot price of Light Louisiana Sweet Crude Oil was peaking at around $150 a barrel, stoking the bullish sentiment of oil-patch stocks. Since then,
has declined 83%,
has more than halved,
has dropped 23% and
has decreased 14%.
University of Calgary professor Philip K. Verleger Jr., who runs PKVerleger LLC, said last week that oil could drop to $20 a barrel if growing stockpiles aren't dealt with soon. PKVerleger is an economic consultant on energy and commodity markets.
Still, crude oil rose for a fourth day today on speculation demand will increase as global economies recover. Oil has gained 44% this year.
Two other newly rated ETFs are
iShares FTSE China Hong Kong Listed Index Fund
iPath DJ UBS Sugar Total Return Sub-Index ETN
TheStreet.com Ratings condenses the available fund performance and risk data into a single composite opinion of each fund's risk-adjusted performance. This allows the unbiased identification of those funds that have historically done well and those that have underperformed the market. The ratings provide a solid framework for making informed investment decisions.
Funds rated A or B are considered "buy" based on a track record of higher-than-average risk-adjusted performance. Funds at the C level are rated as "hold," while underperformers at D and E are "sell."
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Kevin Baker became the senior financial analyst for TSC Ratings upon the August 2006 acquisition of Weiss Ratings by TheStreet.com, covering mutual funds. He joined the Weiss Group in 1997 as a banking and brokerage analyst. In 1999, he created the Weiss Group's first ratings to gauge the level of risk in U.S. equities. Baker received a B.S. degree in management from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and an M.B.A. with a finance specialization from Nova Southeastern University.