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NEW YORK (
) -- The best-performing exchange traded funds in August targeted the recovering
market and banks that have become property owners through foreclosure.
Topping the list are two triple-leveraged funds. The
Direxion Daily Real Estate Bull 3x Shares
jumped 41% in its first full calendar month of trading. The more established
Direxion Daily Financial Bull 3X Shares
The four largest holders of repossessed real estate as of June 30 were
with $4.9 billion in property,
with $2.5 billion,
Bank of America
with $1.8 billion, and
with $1.7 billion. These ETFs made leveraged bets on these banks and other financial stocks.
The best-performing, non-leveraged fund in August was the
iPath Dow Jones-UBS Sugar Subindex Total Return ETN
, which returned a sweet 31% in one month. This exchange traded note tracks an index of futures contracts tied to sugar prices called World Sugar No. 11, which trades on the New York Board of Trade's ICE Futures U.S. Softs exchange. One contract for 112,000 pounds of raw cane sugar is now worth $27,316.80, up 31% in a month and a huge jump from the $13,227 it was worth at year-end.
-- Reported by Kevin Baker in Jupiter, Fla
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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.