Currency trading sometimes gets a bad reputation, sounding a bit like a risky speculator strategy. But there’s a strong case to be made for adding currency to your portfolio; after all, currency doesn’t really follow the market ups and downs. Currencies have their own pressures that drive their direction - interest rates, global economic conditions, political instability and even natural disasters - which are mostly independent from Wall Street. (See also: The Basics of Currency Trading.)

Most professional traders approach currency investing in one of two ways, choosing either a momentum or value strategy driven by technical analysis - a lot of work for anyone but the most dedicated investor. (See also: Top 7 Technical Analysis Tools.)

Fortunately, there are a few high-performing currency ETFs that can help to simplify investment in the category allowing for diversification to the very volatile currency market. Here’s a look at the three best performing ETF currency funds from around the world as of October 31, 2017.

Note: All data is as of October 31, 2017. Funds were chosen by both performance and assets under management.

ProShares Ultra Euro (ULE)

YTD return: 17.60%

Price: $16.57

Average volume: 28,376

Assets: $15.8 million

Returns based on the euro-dollar conversion are leading currency ETF performance year-to-date. The ProShares Ultra Euro ETF uses leverage to benefit from this trade. The ETF seeks to replicate two times the daily performance of the U.S. dollar price of the euro. With the euro weakening, this fund has been gaining.

Market Vectors-Rupee/USD ETN (INR)                

YTD return: 11.56%

Price: $42.35

Average volume: 1,325

Assets: $1.3 million

This fund takes bets on the value of the Indian rupee. INR tracks the performance of the S&P Indian Rupee Total Return Index. The high year-to-date return follows demonetization of the country’s currency in November 2016 which has affected the economy and its competitiveness. Since demonetization specifically, the Rupee has been strengthening against most other global currencies.                                                 

Market Vectors-Renminbi/USD ETN (CNY)

YTD return: 10.88%

Price: $43.30

Average volume: 1,484

Assets: $11.6 million

Economic growth in China has helped CNY to gain in 2017. The fund seeks to track the performance of the S&P Chinese Renminbi Total Return Index. Government actions have also been a factor helping China’s currency. In 2017 regulators have been more closely monitoring and regulating investments and foreign investment outflows. This oversight has been on both individual and corporate investments, with the tighter controls resulting in a strengthening of the currency.

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