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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 15 December 2017

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Dec 15, 2017

In the final ETFS Weekly Market Monitor for 2017 we look back at the best and worst performers for the year-to-date. Non-Japan Asia was the standout segment within equity markets, with UBP, IKO and IAA all returning in excess of 30% so far this year. The poorest performers included a range of bearish products (BBUS and BBOZ), which underperformed in a strong risk-on environment. Within the domestic equity space, small- and mid-cap funds outperformed, with MVE and SSO being the top performers, while HVST was the poorest performer. High yield plays provided the best returns in the fixed income arena, with IHEB returning 9.9%, followed by IHYY, which returned 6.4%. Within currency funds, euro (EEU) has been the best performer in 2017 returning 5.1%, while US dollar (USD and ZUSD) lagged, down over 5%. Palladium was the top commodity performer, with ETPMPD returning 43.3%. Agriculture was the poorest performing sector, with QAG declining 13.4%. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$95m and outflows of A$27m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. The largest inflows were into ETFS EURO STOXX 50 ETF (ESTX), while the largest outflows were from BetaShares Australian Dividend Harvester Funds (HVST).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 8 September 2017

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Dec 08, 2017

The risk-off theme continued into last week with uncertainty around the US government debt ceiling negotiations, Hurricane Irma and North Korea. The S&P/ASX 200 declined by 0.9% last week, the S&P 500 lost 0.6% and the Nikkei 225 dropped 2.1%, while the EURO STOXX 50 posted a modest gain. Domestic resource sector ETFs (MVR and QRE) were the top performing equity funds for the week. The US dollar weakened against most major currencies, with US Treasury yields registering their lowest levels for the year-to-date. The Australian dollar gained over 1%, ending the week at US80.6c. The euro gained 1.5% and the yen jumped 2.2% against the US dollar. Precious metals made strong gains last week, with gold up 1.6% and silver up 1.4%. ETFS Physical Silver (ETPMAG) was the top performing fund for the week, returning 2.9%. WTI Crude posted its first positive week since July, while Iron ore declined by 5.8%. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$71m and outflows of A$12m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. Inflows were mainly into cash and fixed income funds (AAA and QPON), while outflows were from BetaShares Australian Dividend Harvester Fund (HVST).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 7 July 2017

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Dec 07, 2017

Global equities performance was mixed. The S&P/ASX 200 declined 0.3%. The S&P 500 rose 0.1%, while the EURO STOXX 50 rose 0.6%. Agricultural and Resources ETFs (QAG and YANK) were the top performing equity funds for the week, while gold miners (GDX and MNRS) were amongst the poorest performers. The Australian dollar was down against other major currencies, weakened to US 76c after RBA kept interest rates unchanged and did not signal for a rate hike. The euro slightly dropped 0.2% against the US dollar. Global bonds yields climbed after a better-than-expected US jobs report offered support to the Federal Reserve's plan to raise interest rates, US 10 year Treasury yields up 0.08%. Australian 10 year government bond yields up 0.13%. Broad sell-off in commodities. Gold price fell 2.1% to US$1,216 an ounce on the propsect of another rate rise in the US. WTI crude price dropped 3.9% on the increased US production, iron ore price slipped 3.3%. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$171m and outflows of A$18m from domestically domiciled ETFs.

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 6 October 2017

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Dec 06, 2017

Most major markets advanced last week as a risk-on tone returned. The S&P/ASX 200 ended the week up 0.5%, the S&P 500 gained 1.2%, the EURO STOXX 50 gained 0.2% and the Nikkei 225 added 1.6%. Asia and emerging markets returned to favour with four ETFs (IZZ, IBK, UBP and IAA) amongst the top performers for the week. The US dollar strengthened against most major currencies last week. The Australian dollar dropped below US 78c for the first time since July. The euro declined by 0.7%, while pound sterling fell by 2.5% as Brexit concerns and political uncertainty intensified. Precious metals were mixed last week, with gold declining 0.2% despite a rally towards the end of the week. WTI crude dropped back below US$50/bbl, while iron ore stabilised following sharp declines in September. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$52m and outflows of A$11m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. The largest inflows were into iShares S&P/ASX 200 ETF (IOZ) and a range of international equity funds (NDQ, ESTX, BNKS and ROBO).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 4 August 2017

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Dec 04, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 added 0.4% last week. VanEck Vectors Australian Resources ETF (MVR) and ETFS S&P/ASX High Yield Plus ETF (ZYAU) were the top performing domestic equity funds for the week. Following Friday's better than expected US employment figures, the S&P 500 gained 0.2%, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 1.2%, topping 22,000 for the first time. The EURO STOXX 50 gained 1.1% for the week on strong GDP and inflation readings. ETFS EURO STOXX 50 ETF (ESTX) returned 2.4% in local currency terms. The Australian dollar lost ground last week dropping 0.8% against the US dollar, 0.9% against the euro and 0.7% against the yen. Gold declined 0.6%, while platinum rallied 4.1%. ETFS Physical Platinum (ETPMPT) was the top performing fund for the week. Iron ore jumped 7.8%, while WTI crude was down 0.3%, consolidating last week's big gain. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$433m and outflows of A$270m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. Inflows were across a range of asset classes, while outflows were mainly from SPDR S&P/ASX 200 Fund (STW).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 3 November 2017

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Dec 03, 2017

Equity markets received positive news last week with tax reform moving ahead in the US and eurozone GDP surprising to the upside. The S&P/ASX 200 added 1.0%, the S&P 500 gained 0.3%, the EURO STOXX 50 gained 1.0% and the Nikkei 225 added 2.4%. iShares MSCI South Korea Capped ETF (IKO) was the top performing ETF for the week, returning 4.5%, while Australian resource sector ETFs (MVE, QRE and OZR) all returned in excess of 3.8%. The US dollar continued to strengthen, with the Fed signalling 0.75% of rate hikes in 2018. The Australian dollar and the Japanese yen both declined by 0.4%. Pound sterling also declined 0.4% despite the BoE's first rate rise in a decade. WTI crude gained 3.2%, climbing above US$55/bbl for the first time since mid-2015. Gold pulled-back 0.3%, while Palladium continued to rally, gaining 3.0% for the week. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$156m and outflows of just A$4m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. The largest inflows were into cash/ fixed income funds (AAA and PLUS) and domestic equity funds (QOZ, IOZ, MVW).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 1 December 2017

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Dec 01, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 had a mixed week, ending 0.1% higher with Utilities and Energy sectors performing strongly, while Industrials and Materials lagged. The S&P 500 gained 1.5% as the US Senate passed the tax reform bill. Technology stocks sold off as investors rotated into defensive sectors in the US. US-focused ETFs with more defensive sector exposures performed strongly; QUS, MOAT and ZYUS were amongst the top performers for the week. Asia and emerging markets sold off, with UBP, IBK, IAA and IZZ all declining by more than 3.7%. The Australian dollar was relatively flat for the week. The euro and yen declined against the US dollar, while the pound sterling jumped over 1%, reaching a 2 month high.  Precious metals mostly declined; gold dropped 0.6% and silver fell 3.6%, while WTI crude dipped 1% and iron ore gained 3.2%. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$587m and outflows of A$36m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. Inflows were largely into S&P/ASX 200 trackers (IZO and STW).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 1 September 2017

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Dec 01, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 declined by 0.3% last week, dragged down by the financials and real estate sectors. ETFs in those sectors (MVB, QFN and OZF) were amongst the poorest performers for the week. Offshore, the S&P 500 added 1.4%, the Nikkei 225 gained 1.2% and the EURO STOXX 50 also posted a modest gain. The Australian dollar continued to range trade, ending the week 0.5% higher at US 79.75c. It has now traded almost exclusively within a US78-80c range for the past 7 weeks. The euro lost 0.5% against the US dollar, only its second weekly decline since June, while the yen also lost 0.8%. Precious metals made strong gains last week, with gold up 2.6% and silver up 3.9%. Gold and gold mining ETFs (GDX, MNRS and QAU) were amongst the top performers for the week. WTI Crude declined for a fifth consecutive week. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$65m and outflows of A$21m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. Inflows were into broad-based equity funds (IOZ and SFY) and cash/fixed-income products (PLUS, QPON and FLOT). Outflows were primarily from BetaShares Australian High Interest Cash ETF (AAA).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 24 November 2017

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Nov 24, 2017

Equity markets rebounded last week with the S&P/ASX 200 up 0.4% and the S&P 500 gaining 0.9% and hitting a new record high. Europe and Asia also posted strong gains, with the EURO STOXX 50 up 1.0% and Hong Kong's Hang Seng up 2.3%. ETFS ROBO Global Robotics and Automation ETF (ROBO) was the top performing equity ETF last week, returning 2.6% for the week and 9.0% for the month as investor interest in the robotics, automation and AI theme continues to grow both in Australia and offshore. Australian resource sector ETFs also performed strongly with QRE, OZR and MVR all returning over 2%. The Australian dollar gained 0.7% last week, rising back above US 76c, while the euro gained 1.2% and the Japanese yen gained 0.5% against the US dollar. Precious metals mostly declined as risk-on sentiment returned; gold dropped 0.3% and silver fell 1.5%. WTI crude added 4.2%, ending the week above US$58/bbl for the first time in over 2 years. Iron Ore posted its third consecutive weekly gain, adding 8.5%. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$106m and outflows of A$107m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. Inflows were into a range of domestic equity ETFs (QRE, QOZ and EX20), QPON and ROBO. ROBO has seen cumulative inflows of over A$26m since inception in mid-September.

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 17 November 2017

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Nov 17, 2017

S&P/ASX 200 posted its worst weekly performance since June, declining 1.2% and falling back below 6,000 as risk assets sold off globally early last week, before recovering. The S&P 500 rebounded on tax reform progress and a strong CPI reading, ending the week down 0.1%. The EURO STOXX 50 and Nikkei 225 both declined by 1.3%. US small cap stocks performed strongly. iShares Core S&P SmallCap 600 ETF (IRJ) was the top performing ETF, returning 3% for the week. Non-Japan Asia also performed well with IKO and UBP amongst the top performing funds. The Australian dollar declined 1.3% to 0.7564, while the euro gained 1.1% against the US dollar and the Japanese yen gained 1.3%. BetaShares Euro ETF (EEU) was amongst the top performing ETFs for the week, returning 2.7%. Precious metals advanced last week, with gold up 1.4% and silver up 2.5%. WTI crude retreated modestly ahead of this month's OPEC meeting. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$134m and outflows of just A$2m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. Inflows were into a range of equity and fixed income funds including STW, IOZ, PLUS and QPON.

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Europe Playing Catch Up

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Oct 30, 2017

Europe Playing Catch Up ETFS Trade idea – ETFS EURO STOXX 50® ETF (ESTX) The European Central Bank’s (ECB) proactive approach is helping aid Europe’s economic recovery Lending growth is on the up The ECB wants a weaker euro which will support many of the multi-nationals in the EURO STOXX 50, who generate a majority of their revenue offshore ETFS EURO STOXX 50 ETF (ESTX) provides low cost access to European stocks without any UK exposure. This ETF was rated Recommended by Lonsec Whilst we focus on what Trump will tweet next, what new high the Dow will hit, or how long the Australian market can continue moving sideways, Europe has quietly been going about its business, continuing its recovery phase. This recovery has been aided by the ECB’s proactive approach and a stabilising geo-political environment. What should investors be looking at in Europe? What are the ECB doing? Last week on Thursday the ECB met market expectations for tapering its bond purchase program. Globally markets responded positively. For the day at close of markets on Thursday 26th October: o EURO STOXX 50 Index was up 1.3% o DAX was up 1.4% o Positive news from the ECB had a spill-over effect on the S&P 500 which was up 0.2% Show me the money Analysing Eurozone M3 data for September, lending growth is extending: o Lending to corporates rose to 2.5% y/y o Mortgage lending rose to 2.4% y/y o Consumer credit growth steady at 6.7% M1 (good indicator of transactions demand for money) in September rose to 9.7% y/y from 9.5% y/y in August Recent European reporting season Whilst the Australian reporting season was somewhat uneventful, the recent European season showed that the region is recovering strongly: Is Europe over or undervalued? The EURO STOXX 50 is still cheap when looking at valuations against other broad indexes Europe earnings also show that it has much greater catch-up potential The ECB wants a weaker euro The ECB’s concern about a rising euro will see it continue to adopt a dovish stance, as seen in last week’s policy announcement The ETFS Research team believe that any spikes higher in the euro are temporary and that the market has largely priced in tapering of the ECB’s bond purchasing program A weaker euro will support many of the multi-nationals in the EURO STOXX 50 that generate a majority of their revenue offshore Below chart shows a breakdown of the geographic revenue exposure of the EURO STOXX 50 and the S&P 500 Given the continued revival of Europe, the ETFS EURO STOXX 50 ETF (ESTX) is well positioned for investors for the following reasons: no inclusion of UK companies means fallout from Brexit negotiations is reduced the proportion of revenue generated offshore is close to 50% meaning a weaker euro could be a positive scenario for many of the constituent companies ESTX is the lowest cost Europe-focused ETF on the ASX with an MER of 0.35% p.a ESTX is domiciled in Australia so there are no W8-BEN tax forms for investors to complete and US Estate Tax is not applicable Recommended by Lonsec

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 27 October 2017

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Oct 27, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 ended last week flat after giving up earlier gains following the High Court's ruling on eligibility of MPs. The S&P 500 advanced 0.2%, with strong advances in the technology sector. The EURO STOXX 50 added 1.3% as the ECB announced an extension of its bond-buying programme, while in Japan the Nikkei 225 gained 2.6% following Abe's conclusive election victory. Japan-focused ETFs (IJP and UBJ) were amongst the top performers for the week returning over 4%. The Australian dollar dropped to its lowest levels since July, declining 1.8% to below US 77c. The euro dropped 1.5% on lower rate expectations. WTI crude gained 4.7% on concerns of OPEC supply cuts. Precious metals declined for the week in-line with US dollar strength, though gold ended the week strongly in response to political tensions in Spain. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$75m and outflows of A$126m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. The largest inflows were into cash and fixed income funds (AAA, QPON and PLUS), while the majority of outflows were from SPDR S&P/ASX 200 Fund (STW).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 20 October 2017

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Oct 20, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 gained 1.6% last week, trading above 5,900 for the first time since May. The S&P 500 added 0.9%, while the Nikkei 225 gained 1.4% ahead of Shinzo Abe's convincing election victory. ETFS Morningstar Global Technology ETF (TECH) was the top performing unleveraged ETF for the week, returning 2.5%. VanEck Vectors S&P/ASX MidCap ETF (MVE) was the top performing unleveraged domestic equity fund, returning 2.1%. The US dollar gained against most major currencies last week. The Australian dollar declined 0.9% to end the week at US 78.17c. The euro dropped 0.3% and the Japanese yen lost 1.5%. Commodities pulled back last week with gold down 1.8% and silver down 2.2%. Palladium declined 1.6%, but ETFS Physical Palladium (ETPMPD) continues to be the best performing fund on both a year-to-date and 12-month basis. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$72m and outflows of A$6m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. The largest inflows were into a range of cash and fixed income funds (AAA, IAF, PLUS, BILL and QPON).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 13 October 2017

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Oct 13, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 advanced strongly last week, adding 1.8%. Eurozone industrial production continued to exceed expectations, pushing the EURO STOXX 50 marginally higher despite some uncertainty from the Catalonian independence claim. The S&P 500 gained 0.2%, while the Nikkei 225 added 2.2% ahead of this week's election. The US dollar pulled back against most major currencies last week after the Fed Reserve's September minutes showed some divided opinions on monetary policy over the coming months. The Australian dollar climbed 1.8% to end the week at US 78.87c. The euro added by 0.8% and the Japanese yen gained 0.7%. Commodities also performed strongly last week with WTI crude up 4.4% and all four precious metals advancing. Palladium was the big mover gaining 7.4% for the week. BetaShares Crude Oil ETF (OOO) and ETFS Physical Palladium (ETPMPD) were the two best performing ETFs last week. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$147m and outflows of A$38m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. The largest inflows were into SPDR S&P/ASX 200 Fund (STW), a range of cash and fixed income funds (AAA, QPON, FLOT, PLUS, IHHY and IHCB) and ETFS Physical Gold (GOLD).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 22 September 2017

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Sep 22, 2017

Monetary policy was in the spotlight last week, with the US Fed announcing plans to begin winding down it's balance sheet. The S&P 500 dropped on the news, but finished the week slightly up. Elsewhere, the EURO STOXX 50 added 0.7% on strong PMI figures in the lead up to the weekend's German election. The Nikkei 225 gained 1.9%. Domestically, the S&P/ASX 200 declined by 0.2%. Global sector plays (BNKS, FUEL and IXP) and US small caps (IJR and IRU) were the top performing ETFs for the week. The US dollar strengthened against most major currencies. The Australian dollar pulled back 0.5% to below US 80c. Precious metals retreated further, with gold down 1.7% and silver down 3.4%. Iron ore dropped by 11.9% on Chinese demand concerns. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$99m and outflows of A$13m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. The largest inflows were into ETFS Physical Gold (GOLD) and iShares S&P/ASX 200 ETF (IOZ) as well as cash and floating rate income funds (AAA, QPON and FLOT). ETF Securities launched ETFS Global Core Infrastructure ETF (CORE).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 15 September 2017

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Sep 15, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 added 0.4% last week as mining and resource stocks dragged on the local market. Offshore, global stocks hit new highs with the S&P 500 up 1.6%, the EURO STOXX 50 adding 2.0% and the Nikkei 225 up by 3.3% despite continued North Korean aggression. BetaShares WisdomTree Japan ETF (HJPN) was the top performing equity ETF for the week, returning 3.9%. The US dollar strengthened against most major currencies and US Treasury yields rose sharply. The Australian dollar pulled back 0.7% to US 80c, while the euro declined by a similar amount. The Japanese yen dropped 2.8% against the US dollar. Pound sterling gained 3.0% against the US dollar. Precious metals retreated last week, with gold down 2.0% and silver down 2.1%. WTI Crude added 5.1%, trading above US$50/bbl for the first time since July. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$76m and outflows of A$10m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. The largest inflows were into cash and fixed income funds (PLUS and BILL) with a range of equity funds also attracting inflows. ETF Securities launched ETFS ROBO Global Robotics and Automation ETF (ROBO), Australia's first specialist robotics, automation and AI ETF.

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Unhappy With Your Dividends Fund's Performance?

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Aug 22, 2017

ETFS S&P/ASX 300 High Yield Plus ETF (ZYAU) In this week’s ETF Securities trade idea we look at dividend yield strategies and how they can be used in different ways depending on the investor's goals. Dividend strategies can be implemented in different ways to achieve different goals, which have their own pros and cons. Beware of dividend traps, chasing yield may lead to poor investment choices. Capital growth versus income generation – don’t sacrifice one for the other.

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 18 August 2017

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Aug 18, 2017

Tensions between the US and North Korea eased last week, proving positive for risk assets. The S&P/ASX 200 gained 1.0% and the EURO STOXX 50 added 1.2%. The S&P 500 declined by 0.7% as Fed minutes showed a divided outlook for inflation. The top performing equity ETFs for the week were Australian property funds with MVA and VAP returning 2.7% and 2.3% respectively. The Australian dollar strengthened above US 79c, trading as high as US 79.63c on Thursday. The euro strengthened by over 1% against the US dollar as the ECB expressed concern over the strength of the currency. Gold and silver declined as safe haven assets gave up some of the previous week's gains. Palladium posted a new 16-year high on rising demand from the auto sector and supply concerns. ETFS Physical Palladium (ETPMPD) was the top performing fund for the week returning 3.3%. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$110m and outflows of A$32m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. Inflows were mainly across defensive assets such as US dollar cash (USD), gold (GOLD) and fixed income (PLUS, IAF and AAA). Outflows were mainly from domestic equity funds (ZOZI and HVST).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 11 August 2017

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Aug 11, 2017

Global equities sold off and safe-haven assets rallied last week as tensions between the US and North Korea escalated. The S&P/ASX 200 fell by 0.5%, the S&P 500 dropped 1.4% and the EURO STOXX 50 lost 2.9%. The top performing equity ETFs for the week were both from the gold mining sector (GDX and MNRS), often seen as a leveraged play on the price of gold. The VIX reached its highest levels for 2017 to-date. The Australian dollar fell back below US 79c, trading as low as US 78.39c on Friday. Safe-haven currencies performed strongly, with the Swiss franc up 1.2% against the US dollar and the Japanese yen climbing 1.4%. US 10 year Treasury yields fell by 7 basis points. Gold jumped by 2.4% and silver by 5.2%, with other precious metals following suit. WTI crude declined by 1.5%.

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Is AUD/USD Risk On The Downside?

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Aug 09, 2017

Is AUD/USD risk on the downside? ETFS S&P 500 High Yield Low Volatility ETF (ZYUS) Key Teakeaways: The AUD/USD exchange rate is currently close to 2 year highs, at just below US 80c. US rate expectations pulled back in July as political developments have cast uncertainty over the pace of US reforms and growth. Investors with a view that the USD is undervalued or the AUD is overvalued can play a reversal via ZUSD, which is the most cost effective way to access direct US dollar exposure with an ETF. A declining USD has been the key theme in foreign exchange markets this year. The AUD has gained more than 8% from its mid-May lows, while the US Dollar Index (DXY), a measure of the value of the USD against a collection of major world currencies, has dropped nearly 7% over the same period. As shown in Figure 1 the recent appreciation of the AUD has been particularly steep, with the currency peaking at US 80.66c in late July, while the DXY has been in a downward trend for most of 2017, falling over 10% from its peak in the final days of 2016. Chaotic administration weighing on the US dollar. With the Russia investigation, continual changes in key personnel and failures to negotiate Congress, the Trump administration is failing to meet the lofty expectations set by the market last November. Whilst the Fed is now considered likely to raise rates only once more this year, the US economy is generally in good health. US 10 year treasury yields have fallen by just over 10 basis points since the start of July, suggesting that the long-term monetary policy outlook is relatively unchanged. With temporary factors and uncertainty being the main drivers of the lower dollar, a swift reversal is a possible scenario if confidence is restored. Last Friday’s US employment numbers, which exceeded analyst expectations, were an example, with the DXY jumping 0.75% almost immediately. RBA talking AUD down. The strength of the AUD has in part been a result of a shift in the expected direction of the RBA’s next rate move. However, the RBA last week noted that the higher currency is a concern for growth and cut its estimates for 2017 GDP growth by 0.5%. Further validation of a slowdown could quickly shift AUD sentiment to a bearish stance. What does this mean for investors? Investors wishing to express a bullish USD/bearish AUD view may consider the ETFS Physical US Dollar ETF (ZUSD) . ZUSD offers exposure to an appreciation of the USD against the AUD with a management fee of 0.30% per annum, making it the most cost effective ETF offering this exposure in Australia.

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 28 July 2017

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Jul 28, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 declined by 0.4% and the S&P 500 ended the week flat, while the EURO STOXX 50 gained 0.4% for the week. iShares Global Telecom ETF (IXP) was the top performing equity fund for the week. The US dollar continued to decline, with the Australian dollar gaining 0.9% to trade above US 80c for the first time in 25 months. The euro gained 0.8%, while the yen added 0.4%. Commodities posted a strong week with gold up 1.3%, silver up 0.8% and palladium gaining 2.7%. WTI Crude jumped 8.6% to approach the US$ 50/bbl mark. BetaShares Crude Oil Index ETF (OOO), BetaShares Commodities Basket ETF (QCB) and ETFS Physical Palladium (ETPMPD) were all amongst the top performing funds for the week. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$58m and outflows of A$14m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week.

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 21 July 2017

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Jul 21, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 declined by 0.7% as more hawkish statements from RBA saw the market dip on Tuesday. The S&P 500 gained 0.5%, also led by shifting rate expectations. The EURO STOXX 50 lost 2.1% for the week. BetaShares Global Gold Miners ETF (MNRS) was the top performing equity fund for the week as the market continued to turn positive for precious metals. The Australian dollar gained another 1.1% against the US dollar last week. The euro gained 1.7% and the yen also gained 1.2% as the US dollar fell on lower interest rate expectations and potential delays to Trump's policy agenda. Commodities posted a strong week with gold up 1.5% and silver jumping 4.6%. ETFS Physical Silver (ETPMAG) was the top performing fund for the week. Iron ore also rallied on higher than expected Chinese growth. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$196m and outflows of A$141m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week. The largest flows for the week were in the cash sector with inflows into BILL and QPON and outflows from AAA.

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 14 July 2017

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Jul 14, 2017

Global equities rallied last week following Janet Yellen's comments suggesting that the pace of rate normalisation will be more gradual than some had anticipated. The S&P/ASX 200 added 1.1%, the S&P 500 rose 1.4%, the EURO STOXX 50 gained 1.8%, while the MSCI Emerging Markets Index jumped 4.5%. iShares MSCI BRIC ETF (IBK) was the top performing unleveraged equity ETF for the week, returning 2.3% in Australian dollar terms. The Australian dollar gained over 3% on general US dollar weakness and higher commodity prices. The euro gained 0.6% and the pound added 1.6% against the US dollar. The Japanese yen also strengthened by 1.2%. Global bonds yields climbed after a better-than-expected US jobs report offered support to the Federal Reserve's plan to raise interest rates, US 10 year Treasury yields up 0.08%. Australian 10 year government bond yields up 0.13%. Commodities rebounded with WTI crude oil up 5.2% and iron ore up 4.7%. Lower rate expectations also provided positive news for precious metals with gold rising by 1.2% for the week, its best weekly performance in two months. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$84m and outflows of A$67m from domestically domiciled ETFs last week.

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European monetary policy in the spotlight

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Jul 06, 2017

European monetary policy in the spotlight ETFS EURO STOXX 50® ETF (ESTX) Key Takeaway: Despite Draghi’s hawkish statements, Europe’s economic indicators still point to a strong continuing recovery with levels over and above Australia, the US and the UK. In this week’s ETF Securities trade idea we look at key economic indicators released in June across the eurozone as well as looking ahead to the potential end of monetary stimulus, as hinted by the European Central Bank last week, and what that means. Manufacturing in the Eurozone - In June manufacturing in the eurozone continued to expand at pace, with Markit’s eurozone manufacturing PMI indicator of factory activity moving to its highest level since April 2011, pointing to a significant increase in GDP growth in Q2. Germany led the way, but even Greece showed signs of expansion during the month. Composite PMI, combining manufacturing and services, dipped, but remained strong, as shown in Figure 1. Eurozone GDP Growth for Q1 2017 was at 0.6% for the quarter, well above the levels seen in the UK at 0.2%, the US at 0.45% and Australia at 0.3%. In an annual basis, as shown in Figure 2, the eurozone had gained significant ground in recent years. Unemployment held firm at 9.3% in May. While the headline rate is still historically high, it has decreased by a full percentage point in just 15 months and is down from a peak of 12.1% less than four years ago, as shown in Figure 3. Inflation figures released at the end of last week disappointed and clouded the picture somewhat. Headline CPI fell back to 1.3% in June, having peaked at 2.0% in February, as shown in Figure 4. Core CPI, which exclude the volatile energy segment, rose to 1.1% providing some evidence for those looking to frame a reflationary argument. The end of monetary stimulus in the eurozone? Hawkish comments from ECB president, Mario Draghi, last week hinted at the end of monetary stimulus in the eurozone. Although the implications were later watered-down, the market’s reaction to the possibility of near-term tapering was reminiscent of the 2013 US taper tantrum; the euro leapt to a 16 month high, German 10 year Bund yields rose to an 18 month high and the EURO STOXX 50 dropped 2.9% for the week. Sustainability The episode has raised questions as to whether the region’s recovery is sustainable or a result of the extraordinary stimulus measures implemented over the past two years. Cautious statements that followed suggest that stimulus will remain in place for some time, which should be positive for equity markets. Alternatively, as shown in Figure 1, a rising-rate environment has also historically coincided with strong equity market performance over the longer-term. What does this mean for investors? Investors wishing to take a view and add Europe to their portfolio may consider using ETFS EURO STOXX 50® ETF (ESTX), the only ETF in Australia tracking Europe’s leading blue-chip index. ESTX offers unhedged exposure to the eurozone with a management fee of 0.35% per annum.

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 30 June 2017

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Jun 30, 2017

Global equities declined last week as monetary policy expectations were re-aligned following hawkish comments from central bankers across the globe. The S&P/ASX 200 declined by 1.7% on Friday to end the week up 0.1%, following an earlier rally in commodities. The S&P 500 declined 0.6%, while the EURO STOXX 50 dropped 2.9% as European inflation disappointed. Resource sector ETFs (QRE and OZR) were the top performing equity funds for the week, while gold miners (MNRS and GDX) were amongst the poorest performers. The Australian dollar ended the week close to 3 month highs, nearing US 77c on general US dollar weakness. The euro gained 2.1% against the US dollar as the ECB hinted at tighter monetary policy. Global bonds sold off, with US 10 year Treasury yields up 0.16% and Australian 10 year government bond yields up 0.23%. WTI crude rebounded 7%, while iron ore gained 14.5%, sending resource stocks higher. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$116m and outflows of A$58m from domestically domiciled ETFs.

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 23 June 2017

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Jun 23, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 declined by 1% last week as financial stocks continued to suffer from bank-levy related selling. The S&P 500  gained 0.2% as a rebound in technology stocks from the previous week's dip offset falls in the energy sector. The Nikkei 225 gained 1%, while the EURO STOXX 50 ended the week flat. ETFS Morningstar Global Technology ETF (TECH) was the top performing ETF for the week, while VanEck Vectors ChinaAMC A-Share ETF (CETF) benefited from the decision to include China A-shares in the MSCI Emerging Markets Index. The Australian dollar ended the week 0.7% lower, suffering its worst week in two months on the back of lower commodity prices. WTI crude declined 3.9% to US$43/bbl and officially entered a bear market. Precious metals dipped early in the week before finishing the week strongly. The broad Bloomberg Commodity Index declined 2% for the week. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$226m and outflows of A$31m from domestically domiciled ETFs. The largest inflows were into broad-based domestic equity funds (STW, QOZ and IOZ) and BetaShares Australian High Interest Cash ETF (AAA). The bulk of outflows were from iShares S&P 500 AUD Hedged (IHVV).

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Palladium on the move?

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Jun 22, 2017

Palladium on the move? ETFS Physical Palladium (ETPMPD) In this week’s ETF Securities trade idea we examine the drivers behind palladium’s recent price run (up 30% YTD) and look at whether it has further to go. We identify four key points to consider: Palladium’s major use is in autocatalysts used in emission reduction equipment in gasoline cars and its main suppliers are South Africa and Russia Demand for gasoline vehicles is on the rise in key markets such as China and India and diesel demand is declining globally Electric vehicle demand is yet to reach sufficient scale to impact palladium prices significantly Speculative positioning in palladium is high, but not excessive Palladium is a metal used mainly in pollution abatement equipment. Approximately 80% of palladium is used in autocatalysts to reduce the emission of carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxides. There are higher loadings of palladium in gasoline cars than there are in diesel cars. Diesel cars have higher loadings of platinum (which performs a similar role to palladium, but its more suited to diesel engines which operate at lower temperatures). About 40% of platinum demand comes from autocatalysts. About 40% of mine supply of palladium comes from South Africa and another 40% comes from Russia. Historically, the Russian government had been selling its stockpiles of the metal, but there has not been any metal from this source since 2013. There is no transparent data on whether the Russian government has more stocks to sell. Palladium has appreciated by 30.0% in US dollar terms in 2017-to-date and, as shown in Figure 1, is approaching parity with platinum for the first time since 2002. Consumer preferences have tilted towards gasoline vehicles away from diesel, which accounts for much of the rise in demand for palladium relative to platinum. The automobile growth in markets like China, India and other emerging markets is a key area of strength. These are generally gasoline markets. These countries are also tightening emission standards which will increase the loading requirements of palladium. Established diesel markets like Europe are not seeing automobile growth on the same scale and regulatory fall-out from the emissions scandal and technological advancements have further tilted demand away from diesel. Electric vehicles (EVs) are growing rapidly from a small base. While electric vehicles account for less than 1% of global sales today, consensus estimates that it will rise to 4% by 2025. Most EVs do not contain palladium and so the growth of this type of vehicle will reduce a source of demand. We don’t think that the growth of EVs will materially change the supply-demand balance for palladium in the next couple of years, but will do as the market continues to grow. Speculative positioning in the futures market is elevated, as shown in Figure 2. Net longs are above their 5 year historic average but are still well below 2013-2014 levels when concerns about mine supply were aggravated by strikes in South Africa. Supply is subject to abrupt changes. Mine closures due to strike activity, embargoes of exports from certain countries and recycling dependency on other metals are some of the examples of factors that cause supply disruptions. While changes in demand can be quite surprising, as we have seen with the rotation toward palladium (gasoline engines) from platinum (diesel engines) in light of the emission scandal, generally changes in demand are more gradual. Investors wishing to add palladium exposure to their portfolios may consider using ETFS Physical Palladium (ASX Code: ETPMPD), the only ETP in Australia providing investors with physical exposure to the metal. ETPMPD offers holders a direct entitlement to palladium vaulted at HSBC in Switzerland with a management fee of 0.49% per annum.

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 16 June 2017

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Jun 16, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 rebounded last week, posting a 1.7% gain despite declining commodity prices. Healthcare, real estate and financials were the leading sectors. The three top performing ETFs for the week were all domestic property funds (SLF, VAP and MVA). Globally, the S&P 500 posted a modest gain despite  further declines in the technology sector. The Fed Reserve raised rates for the second time this year. The Australian dollar ended the week 1.3% higher, pushing back above US 76c for the first time since early April. Commodity markets were mostly weaker last week with precious metals declining in the wake of higher US interest rates. WTI crude fell to a new year-to-date low on higher OPEC output in May. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$79m and outflows of A$28m from domestically domiciled ETFs. The largest inflows were into broad-based domestic equity funds (QOZ and STW) and the largest outflows were from BetaShares Australian High Interest Cash ETF (AAA).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 09 June 2017

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Jun 09, 2017

Global equity markets were mostly in the red last week, with former FBI director James Comey's testimony and the British election weighing on the market. The S&P/ASX 200 declined by 1.9%, its worst weekly performance of the year. The S&P 500 ended the week down 0.3% and the Nasdaq 100 dropped 2.4%, following wide-spread selling in the technology sector on Friday. Bearish domestic equity ETFs (BBOZ and BEAR) were amongst the top performing funds for the week, whilst domestic property ETFs (SLF, MVA and VAP) were amongst the poorest performers. The Australian dollar ended the week 1.1% higher, pushing back above US 75c. Pound sterling dropped over 1% following the British election outcome. WTI crude dropped 3.8% following news of higher than expected US inventories. Iron ore fell by 5.9% on slowing Chinese growth. ETFS Physical Palladium ETF (ETPMPD) was the top performing fund for the second week running, returning 5.7% for the week and 27.2% year-to-date. Demand for the metal, mainly from the auto industry, has spiked recently pushing prices to 16 year highs. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$85m and outflows of A$5m from domestically domiciled ETFs.

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Silver lining investment theme

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Jun 07, 2017

Silver lining investment theme Trade idea – ETFS Physical Silver ETF (ETPMAG) Gold vs silver ratio – indicates that silver is undervalued o Has averaged 62.63 since 1980 (as of 24 May 2017) o Currently widened to 73.49 (as of 24 May 2017) o 1x standard deviation above the long term average (as of 22 May 2017) Positive economics - a combination of higher inflation, a weakening US dollar (in first half of 2017) and improving manufacturing growth is likely to see silver prices trading higher. Is silver trading below fair value? Historically the ratio difference between gold and silver has been an interesting investment indicator of market direction. The gold vs silver ratio graph below identifies a potential trading theme. The graph indicates that when the ratio falls below the historic average line it could show gold as being below fair value relative to silver. On the reverse, when the ratio trades above the historical ratio average, like it is now, silver could be trading below fair value relative to gold. Positive price movements The Global Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (“PMI”) is sitting at a current high of 54.4, previously unseen since March 2011. In our view, the high PMI may indicate a potential increase in manufacturing activity and therefore a further potential positive move for the silver price in 2017. However, it should be noted that if we saw a global slowdown in manufacturing or a hawkish view from the US FED, this could potentially have a negative impact on the current price of silver and impact the gold vs silver ratio trading theme. Increasing demand Silver has a wide and growing range of uses globally, which could help further stimulate demand and create a positive move in the silver price; examples of silver’s growing uses include printed circuit board manufacturing, healthcare and the production of solar panels. ETF Securities research team give silver a 2017 fair value level of US$21/oz – for further information visit the ETF Securities Research Blog.

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 02 June 2017

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Jun 02, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.6% last week following a bounce on Friday on strong economic data out of the US and a firming expectation of a Fed rate rise this month. The S&P 500 ended the week up 1.0%, while the Nikkei 225 rose 2.5%. Three Japanese equity ETFs (IJP, UBJ and HJPN) were amongst the top performers for the week. The Australian dollar ended the week flat after recovering some lost ground on Friday. The euro and Japanese yen both had strong weeks, gaining against the US dollar. The Chinese renminbi jumped 0.7%, posting its fourth consecutive weekly gain against the US dollar. WTI crude dropped 4.3%, while gold gained 0.8%. Palladium gained 7.3% and posted a new 3-year high on increasing demand from the auto sector. ETFS Physical Palladium ETF (ETPMPD) was the top performing fund for the week, returning 7.4%. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$185m and outflows of A$4m from domestically domiciled ETFs. The largest inflows were into SPRD S&P/ASX 200 Fund (STW) and BetaShares Australian High Interest Cash ETF (AAA).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 26 May 2017

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May 26, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 ended the week up 0.4%, led higher by the energy and industrials sectors. Offshore, the S&P 500 gained 1.4% and the EURO STOXX 50 declined 0.2%. In Asia, the Nikkei 225 gained 0.5%, while the FTSE China 50 added 2.8% and Korea's KOSPI 200 jumped 3.0%. Chinese and Korean equity funds (IKO, CETF and IZZ) were amongst the top performers for the week. Currency markets were relatively unchanged last week, with the Australian dollar ending marginally lower at US74.5c. The pound sterling declined after polls narrowed in the lead up to next month's UK election. WTI crude advanced early in the week before pulling back on Friday after OPEC announced lower than anticipated production cuts. Gold and silver gained 1.0% and 3.1% respectively. ETFS Physical Silver (ETPMAG) was the top performing commodity fund for the week. Iron Ore declined 7.6%. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$55m and outflows of A$1m from domestically domiciled ETFs. The largest inflows were into domestic equity funds (QOZ and MVW).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 19 May 2017

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May 19, 2017

Global equities retreated last week as US political turmoil dominated headlines. The S&P/ASX 200 ended the week down 1.9%, the S&P 500 dropped 0.4% and the EURO STOXX 50 declined 1.4%. The domestic financial sector was hit hardest, with financial sectors ETFs (QFN, OZF and MVB) all amongst the poorest performers for the week. In Asia, the Nikkei 225 declined 1.5% on a strengthening yen, while the Shanghai Composite posted its first weekly gain in six weeks. The Australian dollar gained 1% last week on general US dollar weakness. The euro gained 2.5% and the yen gained 1.9%. WTI crude gained 5.2% on anticipation of OPEC production cuts. Gold and silver gained 1.7% and 2.9% respectively as investors looked to protect against increased equity volatility. Iron ore advanced 2.1%. Crude oil, silver and gold ETFs (OOO, ETPMAG and QAU) were amongst the top performers for the week. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$153m and outflows of A$4m from domestically domiciled ETFs. The largest inflows were into SPDR S&P/ASX 200 Fund (STW).

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Weekly ETF Monitor for week ending 12 May 2017

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May 12, 2017

The S&P/ASX 200 ended the week unchanged with a recovery in the resources sector offsetting declines in the major banks on news of the federal government's new bank tax. Offshore, the S&P 500 declined 0.4% and the EURO STOXX 50 retreated 0.6%, while the Nikkei 225 and Hang Seng both gained in excess of 2%. Top performing ETFs domestically were gold miners and resource funds (MNRS, GDX, QRE, MVR and OZR), while financials-focused funds were the poorest performers (MVB, QFN and OZF). The Australian dollar declined 0.5% last week, with the US dollar gaining ground against most of the majors. WTI crude gained 3.5% on falling US inventories. Gold and silver gained 0.3% and 0.2% respectively. The Australian ETF market saw inflows of A$89m and outflows of A$82m from domestically domiciled ETFs. The largest inflows were into ETFS Physical Gold (GOLD) and domestic equity strategy ETFs (HVST, MVW and YMAX). Outflows were from broad-based Australian equity funds (STW and ILC) and cash (AAA).

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