Mainland China's benchmark equity index is down 9.1% over the past month and nearly 18% over the past three.
Instead of being worried, investors can take advantage of the selloff with exchange traded funds that bet against the Chinese market, also known as "bear" funds.
As we noted last month, the Direxion Daily CSI 300 China A Share Bear 1X Shares (CHAD) - Get Direxion Daily CSI 300 China A Share Bear 1X Shares Report is an ideal option for investors who expect further declines in Chinese A shares, the stocks trading on the mainland in Shanghai and Shenzhen.
The Direxion Daily CSI 300 China A Share Bear 1X Shares ETF is designed to deliver the daily inverse performance of China's blue-chip CSI 300 Index. So when the CSI 300 falls by 1%, the CHAD ETF should rise 1%. Investors looking for a U.S.-listed ETF with a similar bent just need to look to the Deutsche X-trackers Harvest CSI 300 China A-Shares ETF (ASHR) - Get Xtrackers Harvest CSI 300 China A-Shares ETF Report , which also tracks the CSI 300 Index.
Signs suggest that traders are anticipating further downside for A shares. For example, it was reported on Monday that the cost to borrow shares of the Deutsche X-trackers Harvest CSI 300 China A-Shares ETF to sell short is so high that short sellers would need the fund to fall another 40% just to break even.
Yet last week, bearish put options on the fund cost nearly twice as much as calls. And earlier this month, nearly 20% of ASHR's shares outstanding were sold short, according to Bloomberg.
The CHAD ETF is benefiting. The fund has surged 24.1% since coming to market on its way to amassing $232.5 million in assets under management, a jaw-dropping sum for an ETF that is just six weeks old.
Declines on China's mainland have trickled down to stocks trading in Hong Kong. Over the past 90 days, the Hong Kong benchmark Hang Seng Index is lower by 13.4%.
That has sent the iShares China Large-Cap ETF (FXI) - Get iShares China Large-Cap ETF Report tumbling by nearly 24% over the same period. The largest China ETF trading in the U.S., the iShares China Large-Cap ETF holds large-cap Chinese equities that trade on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
One way to play ongoing weakness in Hong Kong-listed stocks is with the ProShares Short FTSE China 50 (YXI) - Get ProShares Short FTSE China 50 Report . Like the CHAD ETF, the ProShares Short FTSE China 50 is an inverse -- though not leveraged -- fund. When the FTSE China 50 Index falls 1%, the ProShares Short FTSE China 50 should rise 1%. That index is also tracked by FXI. The ProShares Short FTSE China 50 has done an admirable job of closely tracking the inverse performance of that index, rising 24.1% over the past 90 days.
As is the case with the Shanghai Composite, there are some signs that indicate traders are prepping for more downside in Hong Kong. Look at the Direxion Daily FTSE China Bear 3X Shares (YANG) - Get Direxion Daily FTSE China Bear 3X Shares Report . That fund is designed to return three times the daily inverse performance of the FTSE China 50 Index, so if the index falls 1%, YINN should rise 3%.
This month traders have added $29.4 million to YANG, nearly the same amount that was added to the fund through the entire second quarter.
This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held no position in the stocks mentioned.