Commodities have been down in the dumps this year as a strengthening U.S. dollar and slowing global economy weigh on demand. Consequently, exchange traded products linked to the raw materials have been among the worst performers of 2015.
For instance, a natural gas-related exchange traded note and exchange traded fund are at the bottom of the barrel this year. Year-to-date, the iPath Bloomberg Natural Gas Subindex Total Return ETN (NYSEArca: GAZ) plunged 60.7% and First Trust ISE-Revere Natural Gas Index Fund (NYSEArca: FCG) plummeted 59.9%. Natgas prices have been weakening, with gas futures recently touching a 16-year low, as a booming shale oil industry inundated the markets with rising supplies while an unusually warm winter diminished heating demand. However, colder temperatures ahead have bolstered natural gas prices over the past week.. GAZ tries to reflect the performance of natural gas futures. FCG tracks natural gas-related companies. [Natural Gas ETFs Blaze Ahead]
The ongoing global crude oil supply glut has dragged on energy-related sectors, including master limited partnerships that provide the basic infrastructure to transport oil around the U.S. For instance, the Yorkville High Income MLP ETF (NYSEArca: YMLP) decreased 58.2% year-to-date. Nevertheless, YMLP’s robust 21.29% 12-month yield may help offset some of the pullback. Additionally, among the worst ETP performers this year, the iPath S&P GSCI Crude Oil Total Return Index ETN (NYSEArca: OIL), which tracks West Texas Intermediate crude oil moves, also retreated 49.4% this year. [Hunting ETFs for More Income]
The First Trust Indxx Global Agriculture ETF (NasdaqGM: FTAG), which declined 56.2% this year, was also caught up in the weakness in agricultural commodities. FTAG tracks companies that are engaged in improving agricultural yields, and with depressed soft commodity prices, farmers are not willing to spend as much on improving yields.