ETF Bracket Madness: Esteemed Eight

by on March 30, 2013

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].

Routine Victories

Starting with #1 (SPY, A) routing #16 (IJH, A-) 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.

ETF Bracket Madness


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!

Download the updated bracket.

Read the rules for the Bracket Challenge.

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Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.