With Wednesday’s rebound failing to hold amidst renewed uncertainty, Europe region-related exchange traded funds retreated, with major European benchmarks revisiting their two-year lows.
On Thursday, the Vanguard FTSE Europe ETF (NYSEArca: VGK) was down 1.7% and iShares MSCI EMU ETF (NYSEArca: EZU) was 1.3% lower, with both broad Europe ETFs trading near their lowest level March 2017. Year-to-date, VGK declined 15.7% and EZU decreased 17.4%.
On the other hand, bearish traders have been capitalizing on the weakness through inverse ETFs, such as the ProShares UltraShort FTSE Europe (NYSEArca: EPV), which tracks the -2x or -200% daily performance of the FTSE Developed Europe Index. EPV rose 3.6% on Thursday and jumped 34.2% year-to-date.
Additionally, the VellocityShares 1x Long VSTOXX Futures ETN (NYSEArca: EVIX), which tracks VSTOXX Short-term Futures, a widely observed measure of European equity market volatility, similar to what the VIX or CBOE Volatility Index does based on U.S. equity market volatility, surged 15.1% on Thursday.