One week officially in the books and the Super Sixteen is no more. Some of the matchups ended as many expected, but there were a handful of ETF upsets that surely shook up everyone’s brackets. Below, we breakdown some of the games and certain funds prospered while others fell flat. If you need it, get a refresher on the rules of the competition [for more ETF news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
Starting with #1 (SPY, A) routing #16 (IJH, B+) 4-1, our ETF bracket held the tradition of no #16 ever beating a #1 with IJH only besting SPY when it comes to three-year performance. #8 (VTI, A+) narrowly edged out #9 (LQD, A), as its higher asset base pushed it over the top to make it to the next round. #5 (EFA, A) took down #12 (BND, A) despite being a more expensive product. It should come as no surprise to see #6 (IVV, A-) coast to a victory after SPY did the same with virtually the same exposure.
Perhaps the most interesting matchup was that between #7 (QQQ, B+) and #10 (TIP, A). Both funds charge 20 basis points for investment, allowing each to garner three points for the round. QQQ took the match in overtime with a stronger one-year return than its fixed income competitor.
Of course, it would not be a successful bracket challenge if there weren’t some upsets to dash the hopes of some and reward the risks of others. #13 (IWF, A-) was able to top the emerging market juggernaut, #4 (EEM, A-) as it featured a lower volatility than its larger counterpart. #14 (VNQ, A+) shocked by demolishing the largest emerging market fund, #3 (VWO, A). In fact, the only thing that VWO held over its competitor was the fact that it had more assets.
The final upset ensured that no teen-ranked seed suffered a loss in the opening round, as #15 (IWD, A-) narrowly took out #2 (GLD, A-). Though GLD has the second-largest asset base of any fund, its lack of a dividend forced it into a crushing first-round upset that few saw coming.
The Esteemed Eight
Below is a download of the updated bracket including the scores of the previous round; be sure to let us know how you did before we get down to the Fanatic Four!
Read the rules for the Bracket Challenge.
Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.