By the time the closing bell sounded on Friday, it would not have been surprising to have heard some traders and investors say “What the heck happened to January?”

The first month of year is usually one of the best for stocks and while some argue the utility of the January Effect is overstated, what is not for up debate is the dismal performances turned in by the major U.S. indices last month. Soft economic data, coupled with troubles in the emerging markets, triggered a global sell-off in the last week of the month. [January ETF Performance Report]

Still, as at least one famous personality likes to say, there is always a bull market somewhere and that was the case in January as the 10-best non-leveraged ETFs posted some impressive gains.

First, some notes about this list. The rankings were pulled from as of January 30. Second, ETNs were excluded, but it should be noted the iPath Dow Jones-UBS Natural Gas Total Return Sub-Index ETN (NYSEArca: GAZ) was January’s best performer among ETNs and ETFs.

The list is in ascending order starting with the…

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