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Short and Curlies


The Longpigs were one of the lesser lights of Britpop, best known for a number 16 hit with She Said and for launching the career of Richard Hawley. Now though, apparently, short pigs are all the rage.

RoastingNews reaches us of exciting developments in the world of ETFs where the market is seeking out ways to play swine flu. ETF Securities has seen a surge in volumes and returns of its Short Lean Hogs ETC after the World Health Organisation (WHO) raised its pandemic alert for swine flu to the second highest level last Wednesday.

No word on Short Fat Hogs, but we are reliably informed that the surge in short interest in their slimline cousins has put them in the top 5 of short ETC’s by returns in the year to date. The porkers must be feeling particularly perky at outperforming the MSCI World by some 74 percent since September last year.

ETF Securities reckons the interest shows investors are using Short ETCs to benefit from an anticipated fall in demand for lean hogs on the swine flu outbreak. It notes that U.S. pork import bans have been enacted by Russia, China, the Philippines, Serbia, Kazakhstan and South Korea since the end of last week — while lean hog prices have seen sustained pressure as farmers have culled pigs, increasing supply as high feed costs and falling returns have pressured margins.