Thursday was just another day at the office for the Deutsche X-trackers Harvest CSI 300 China A-Shares Fund (NYSEArca: ASHR), the largest U.S.-listed exchange traded fund holding Chinese A-shares equities.
Well, sort of. ASHR hit another all-time high, something it and rival A-shares ETFs have recently been doing on a regular basis, but ASHR’s Thursday’s surge was breathtaking as the fund soared 8% on nearly six times the average daily volume. That 8% gain easily made ASHR’s Thursday’s top-performing non-leveraged ETF.
Several other A-shares ETFs also joined the new high club, including ASHR’s small-cap counterpart, the Deutsche X-trackers Harvest CSI 500 China A-Shares Small Cap Fund (NYSEArca: ASHS) and the KraneShares Bosera MSCI China A-Shares ETF (NYSEArca: KBA). Over the past month, ASHR and KBA are up 31.4% and 22.5%, respectively. The Market Vectors ChinaAMC A-Share ETF (NYSEArca: PEK), the oldest U.S.-listed A-shares ETF jumped nearly 5% Thursday to its highest levels in almost three and a half years on volume that was more than six times the daily average. [Another Big Day for A-Shares ETFs]
Over the past month stocks in Shanghai have outpaced the world’s 92 other major equity bourses. Recent performances by A-shares ETFs might imply that their rally is in the late innings, but looking at a chart of the Shanghai Composite indicates otherwise.
“To say that Chinese stocks are on a tear would be an understatement. The post-June rally gathered steam after breaking key down trendlines in July and October. More recently, the up-move accelerated further following the opening of the Shanghai market to foreign investment. At the moment, the Composite is showing its largest 6-day, 6-week and 6-month gains in roughly 5 years,” notes Dana Lyons of J. Lyons Fund Management.
What is important to the near-term fortunes of ETFs like ASHR is the Shanghai Composite is breaking out of a lengthy slumber and a security does that “it typically moves to a high-volatility extreme, eventually. In that regard, this move (in the Shanghai Composite) may just be getting started. Furthermore, the momentum behind the current move is not something that is easily and quickly negated,” adds Lyons.
For investors not yet familiar with the aforementioned ETFs, the emphasis on the Shanghai Composite here is critical because ASHR, KBA and friends hold stock that trade in Shanghai and Shenzhen. On the other hand, the iShares China Large-Cap ETF (NYSEArca: FXI), the largest U.S.-listed China ETF, holds Hong Kong- and U.S.-listed shares. That makes a significant difference as FXI is up “just” 5% in the past month. [A Rush to A-Shares ETFs]