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The 12 Worst Investment Funds Over the Past Decade

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See this visualization first on the Voronoi app.

Graphic ranking the worst investment funds over the past decade

The 12 Worst Investment Funds Over the Past Decade

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on iOS or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

In this graphic, we visualize the 12 worst investment funds over the past decade, as of Dec. 31, 2023. This ranking was compiled by Morningstar, and is based on the amount of shareholder wealth lost.

The data we used to create this graphic can also be found in the table below.

FundTickerCategoryEstimated Wealth Lost
($ billions)
iShares MSCI China ETFMCHIEmerging Markets-$2.8
iShares Core MSCI
Emerging Markets ETF
IEMGEmerging Markets-$3.0
ProShares Short
S&P 500
SHInverse Equity-$3.2
ProShares UltraShort
S&P 500
SDSInverse Equity-$3.3
ProShares UltraPro
Short S&P 500
SPXUInverse Equity-$3.7
iShares China
Large-Cap ETF
FXIEmerging Markets-$3.7
PIMCO Commodity
Real Return Strat 12
PCRPXCommodities-$3.8
ARK Genomic Revolution
ETF
ARKGThematic-$4.2
KraneShares CSI China
Internet ETF
KWEBEmerging Markets-$5.9
ARK Innovation ETFARKKThematic-$7.1
ProShares Ultra VIX
Short-Term Futures
UVXYVolatility-$7.2
ProShares UltraPro
Short QQQ
SQQQInverse Equity-$8.5

From this list we can see that many of these funds are focused on emerging markets like China, or follow an “inverse equity” strategy, meaning they short their respective index.

Two noteworthy outliers are the ARK Innovation ETF and ARK Genomic Revolution ETF, which attempt to invest in “disruptive innovation”. Both ETFs are actively managed.

Shorting the U.S. Market

The U.S. stock market has experienced a long-term upward trend since 2009, meaning funds that short major indices like the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 have suffered over the 10-year period.

Seeing the heaviest losses is the ProShares UltraPro Short QQQ (SQQQ), which seeks daily investment results that correspond to three times the inverse (-3x) of the daily performance of the Nasdaq-100.

While these funds are likely unsuitable for a long-term buy and hold strategy, they can be profitable during downturns. One example would be the COVID-19 crash on March 12, 2020, where the S&P 500 fell by 12%.

Chinese Equities Stumble

Another common theme from this ranking are China-focused funds such as the KraneShares CSI China Internet ETF (KWEB).

Since their 2021 peak, Chinese stocks have lost over $6 trillion in market cap. This has been due to various reasons, including a sluggish COVID-19 recovery, a troubled real estate market, and alarming crackdowns on tech firms by government officials.

Want to learn more about global equity markets? Check out this graphic that visualizes the biggest companies on the Nasdaq, NYSE, and international exchanges.

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U.S. Debt Interest Payments Reach $1 Trillion

U.S. debt interest payments have surged past the $1 trillion dollar mark, amid high interest rates and an ever-expanding debt burden.

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This line chart shows U.S. debt interest payments over modern history.

U.S. Debt Interest Payments Reach $1 Trillion

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on iOS or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

The cost of paying for America’s national debt crossed the $1 trillion dollar mark in 2023, driven by high interest rates and a record $34 trillion mountain of debt.

Over the last decade, U.S. debt interest payments have more than doubled amid vast government spending during the pandemic crisis. As debt payments continue to soar, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) reported that debt servicing costs surpassed defense spending for the first time ever this year.

This graphic shows the sharp rise in U.S. debt payments, based on data from the Federal Reserve.

A $1 Trillion Interest Bill, and Growing

Below, we show how U.S. debt interest payments have risen at a faster pace than at another time in modern history:

DateInterest PaymentsU.S. National Debt
2023$1.0T$34.0T
2022$830B$31.4T
2021$612B$29.6T
2020$518B$27.7T
2019$564B$23.2T
2018$571B$22.0T
2017$493B$20.5T
2016$460B$20.0T
2015$435B$18.9T
2014$442B$18.1T
2013$425B$17.2T
2012$417B$16.4T
2011$433B$15.2T
2010$400B$14.0T
2009$354B$12.3T
2008$380B$10.7T
2007$414B$9.2T
2006$387B$8.7T
2005$355B$8.2T
2004$318B$7.6T
2003$294B$7.0T
2002$298B$6.4T
2001$318B$5.9T
2000$353B$5.7T
1999$353B$5.8T
1998$360B$5.6T
1997$368B$5.5T
1996$362B$5.3T
1995$357B$5.0T
1994$334B$4.8T
1993$311B$4.5T
1992$306B$4.2T
1991$308B$3.8T
1990$298B$3.4T
1989$275B$3.0T
1988$254B$2.7T
1987$240B$2.4T
1986$225B$2.2T
1985$219B$1.9T
1984$205B$1.7T
1983$176B$1.4T
1982$157B$1.2T
1981$142B$1.0T
1980$113B$930.2B
1979$96B$845.1B
1978$84B$789.2B
1977$69B$718.9B
1976$61B$653.5B
1975$55B$576.6B
1974$50B$492.7B
1973$45B$469.1B
1972$39B$448.5B
1971$36B$424.1B
1970$35B$389.2B
1969$30B$368.2B
1968$25B$358.0B
1967$23B$344.7B
1966$21B$329.3B

Interest payments represent seasonally adjusted annual rate at the end of Q4.

At current rates, the U.S. national debt is growing by a remarkable $1 trillion about every 100 days, equal to roughly $3.6 trillion per year.

As the national debt has ballooned, debt payments even exceeded Medicaid outlays in 2023—one of the government’s largest expenditures. On average, the U.S. spent more than $2 billion per day on interest costs last year. Going further, the U.S. government is projected to spend a historic $12.4 trillion on interest payments over the next decade, averaging about $37,100 per American.

Exacerbating matters is that the U.S. is running a steep deficit, which stood at $1.1 trillion for the first six months of fiscal 2024. This has accelerated due to the 43% increase in debt servicing costs along with a $31 billion dollar increase in defense spending from a year earlier. Additionally, a $30 billion increase in funding for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in light of the regional banking crisis last year was a major contributor to the deficit increase.

Overall, the CBO forecasts that roughly 75% of the federal deficit’s increase will be due to interest costs by 2034.

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