NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Energy ETFs such as Energy Select Sector SPDR ( XLE) and WisdomTree International Energy ( DKA) offer low valuations and solid yields after trailing the broader market for most of the past 18 months.The story of energy underperformance is perhaps best exemplified by the performance of Exxon Mobil ( XOM). In early July, shares of the oil giant fell below their 2009 lows, hurt by the stock market selloff and a sharp drop in oil prices in the preceding weeks. While other oil firms slid during this period, XOM underperformed other majors such as Chevron ( CVX) and ConocoPhillips ( COP). Even some of the companies involved in the BP disaster, most notably Anadarko Petroleum ( APC), did not fall below their 2009 lows. Earnings estimates for the current quarter have been trending up for Exxon, but the full year and next year estimates have been declining. CVX and COP have also seen a decline in estimates for next year's earnings, though their shares have performed much better. Investors appear to be pricing in a very negative outlook for these companies, with lower energy prices and very slow global economic growth, but oil prices are close to $80 a barrel and natural gas prices have rebounded from their lows, while growth in emerging markets remains robust and is offsetting the slow recovery in developed markets.