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Best and Worst Investments of 2012

By Ben Steverman - 2012-12-12T21:04:13Z

Photograph by Mary Altaffer/AP Photo

Company Symbol % Change
13 of 18

Worst Exchange-Traded Fund

ProShares VIX Short-Term Futures ETF


The ProShares VIX Short-Term Futures ETF (VIXY) holds future contracts that do well when the VIX index, a measure of the U.S. stock market's volatility, rises. Betting on volatility was a losing strategy in 2012, which was much more placid than some recent years.

Universe and criteria: The 1,064 U.S.-based exchange-traded funds (ETFs). Excluded are exchange-traded notes and ETFs that use leverage.