Top-Rated ETFs Invest in Foreign Stocks

The funds with the best ratings from TheStreet.com target international stocks and commodities.
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NEW YORK (

TheStreet

) -- The best bets in exchange traded funds invest in commodities and international stocks, according to TheStreet.com Ratings.

Of the 10 top-rated funds, six invest in stocks outside the U.S. and three target precious metals or coal. All the funds have "buy" recommendations, but three have earned our top grade of A-plus.

The

PowerShares Global Progressive Transportation Portfolio

(PTRP)

, the best-rated fund, has gained 17% in the past year. The fund advanced as shares of

Maxwell Technologies

(MXWL) - Get Report

and

Westport Innovations

(WPRT) - Get Report

doubled.

The second-best rated ETF,

First Trust Health Care AlphaDEX Fund

(FXH) - Get Report

, which has climbed 12% in the past year, is positioned to benefit as

health care reforms

bring the company new customers. More than half of the fund focuses on health care products and services, while 36% is invested in drugmakers and biotechnology. Hot holdings include

Tenet Healthcare

(THC) - Get Report

,

Community Health Systems

(CYH) - Get Report

and

Intuitive Surgical

(ISRG) - Get Report

, which have risen by more than 40%.

Despite all the hype surrounding alternative energy, coal remains a popular energy source. The

PowerShares Global Coal Portfolio

(PKOL)

has increased 22%. Industry leaders

Massey Energy

(MEE)

and

Patriot Coal

(PCX)

have doubled in value this year. An economic rebound would boost demand for energy, making this an attractive ETF.

The

best-performing ETFs

in the third quarter held shares of small- and mid-cap airlines and Brazilian companies.

The

worst-performing ETFs

bet on higher volatility, a rising U.S. dollar and the natural gas.

To find the best rated open-end equity funds, check out our

Top Rated Mutual Funds

page.

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.