As hints of spring have hit parts of the country in recent days while other metropolitan areas struggle with the bitterness of winter and in some cases blizzard conditions, a growing “niche” within ETFs that is undoubtedly tied to weather is that of “Agribusiness.”

The Agribusiness sector really did not exist, not in compact investable form at least, until MOO (Market Vectors Agribusiness, Expense Ratio 0.53%) debuted back in the summer of 2007.

The fund has since grown to nearly $6 billion in size in terms of assets under management, and it averages more than 350,000 shares traded daily. Tracking the DAXglobal Agribusiness Index, top holdings in the fund are names such as Monsanto (8.26%), Syngenta AG (7.37%), and Potash Corp. (6.84%).

Three other ETFs exist within this space, albeit all are much smaller in terms of assets under management at the moment (but all of them are also significantly “newer” to the ETF marketplace).

While MOO undoubtedly has a mega/large cap slant in terms of its portfolio composition (80.61% of the underlying holdings are classified as mega/large cap), PAGG (PowerShares Global Agriculture, Expense Ratio 0.75%), CROP (IndexIQ Global Agribusiness Small Cap, Expense Ratio 0.75%), and VEGI (iShares MSCI Global Agriculture Producers, Expense Ratio 0.39%) are newer alternatives in the Agribusiness space.

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