15 Most Read ETF Articles of the Week (August 15-19)

The markets have grown overly complacent, with the CBOE Volatility Index and related exchange traded funds slipping to lower levels this year, as stocks continue on their eight-year bull run toward new record highs.

The CBOE Volatility Index, or VIX, is hovering around 11.8, its lowest level so far this year.

For instance, with volatility dissipating and stocks moving higher, the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures ETN (NYSEArca: VXX)and ProShares VIX Short-Term Futures ETF (NYSEArca: VIXY) have declined 54.0% year-to-date.

9. What the ETF Industry Has Done Since the Mini Flash Crash

As the market approaches the one-year anniversary of the August 24 sell-off, exchange traded fund providers and market exchanges have come together to outline new rules for more orderly early morning trades to avoid another mini flash crash.

10. Gold ETFs to Hedge Against a Fed Surprise

Gold prices inched higher Tuesday, despite conflicting views from Federal Reserve officials. As the U.S. waits for the Fed announcement, traders may consider a bearish or inverse gold exchange traded funds to hedge against a more hawkish outlook.

On Tuesday, the SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEArca: GLD), iShares Gold Trust (NYSEArca: IAU) and ETFS Physical Swiss Gold Shares (NYSEArca: SGOL) were up about 0.7% while Comex gold futures were 0.5% higher to $1,354.8 per ounce.

11. Making the Case for Emerging Markets

We had been cautious about investing in emerging markets for the last few years and had avoided significant emerging markets exposure, as risks remained elevated.

Pressure stemming from falling commodity prices, slowing growth in China, sharp decreases in capital flows, and a strengthening dollar left risks to these economies relatively high despite their overall attractive valuations. However, we believe the risks have stabilized and investors should reconsider emerging markets, as they are now more attractive on a risk/reward basis than they have been for some time.

12. Smart-Beta Energy ETF Jumps Out as Crude Oil Turns Bullish

After just a couple of weeks past a bear market fall off, crude oil futures moved backed into bullish territory Thursday. Meanwhile, some larger traders jumped into a smart-beta, energy sector exchange traded fund on the suddenly rosier outlook in the oil market.

13. China A-Shares ETFs Climb on Anticipated Shenzhen-Link

Mainland Chinese markets and related China A-shares exchange traded funds rallied Monday on hopes of a formal announcement to a Shenzhen-Hong Kong trading link.

Leading the market surge on Monday, theVanEck Vectors ChinaAMC SME-ChiNextETF (NYSEArca: PEK) rose 4.2%, VanEck Vectors ChinaAMC CSI 300 ETF (NYSEArca: CNXT) gained 3.8% and db X-trackers Harvest CSI 300 China A-Shares Fund (NYSEArca: ASHR) increased 4.0%. Both PEK and ASHR are trading back above their long-term, 200-day simple moving averages.

14. Record Investment Demand for Gold ETFs

Global central bankers’ ever-looser monetary policies and increased uncertainties helped drive investment demand for gold bullion and related exchange traded funds to record highs for the first six months of the year.

15. An Outperforming International Smart-Beta ETF Strategy

The Gavekal Knowledge Leaders Developed World ETF (NYSEArca: KLDW), the first exchange traded fund based on the so-called Knowledge Effect, has been an outperforming international play.

Since its inception as of July 31, 2016, KLDW has outpaced the MSCI World Index by over 5.5 percentage points. Over the past year, KLDW increased 7.4% while the iShares MSCI World Index Fund (NYSEArca: URTH)rose 2.5%. Year-to-date, KLDW increased 10.1%, compared to the 6.3% advance for URTH.