The new year is still young, but even with Friday’s declines, Russia exchange traded funds, among the most battered ETFs in 2014, are off to a decent start in 2015.

For example, the Market Vectors Russia ETF (NYSEArca: RSX), one of last year’s worst performing non-leveraged ETFs, entered Friday with a 2015 gain of nearly 8%. Among non-leveraged ETFs, only the Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF (NYSEArca: GDXJ) has been better. Short covering could be and likely is one catalyst lifting Russian stocks.

“The deep hammer candle in mid-December was a sign of panic and likely offered some fuel to the recent rally,” reports Andrew Nyquist for See It Market. “Note that it also posted a near 20 RSI on the weekly chart below which highlights this deep stress. The breakdown occurred from around the $20 per share area – although that may be a stretch near-term, it does highlight how much room RSX has to rally if it sees follow through buying (and/or short covering) over the coming weeks.”

Chart Courtesy: Andrew Nyquist, See It Market