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Horizons ETFs And National Bank Direct Brokerage Announce The Winners Of The Biggest Winner 12 Trading Competition

TORONTO – July 26, 2023 – Horizons ETFs Management (Canada) Inc. (“Horizons ETFs”)

and National Bank Direct Brokerage (“NBDB”) are pleased to announce that Michael Pallone from Montreal, Quebec is the grand prize winner of the Horizons ETFs Biggest Winner 12 Trading Competition (the “Competition”). With the highest six-week cumulative return of 27.07%, Mr. Pallone has been awarded the grand prize of $10,000.

I was very excited to find out I won. As a Horizons ETFs’ web subscriber and having attended their webinars in the past, I was alerted to the competition by email. I entered the Biggest Winner 12 to learn more about ETF trading and have fun and ultimately, did both! It was a great competition!” said Mr. Pallone, upon learning of his success.

The Competition, which ran from May 15 to June 23, 2023, saw approximately 2,500 participants complete more than 25,000 trades over the six-week trading period. Contestants were provided with a fantasy brokerage account, with a balance of $100,000 in notional Canadian dollars. Competitors used these fantasy funds to place simulated trades among more than 1,000 ETFs listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX).

For Mr. Pallone, his key to success was anticipating and taking advantage of recent market volatility. To achieve his returns, he rotated in and out of long and short commodity and equity-focused strategies, targeting opportunities to reposition and capture momentum ahead of market reversals.

Due to the short time horizon, I figured I needed to take advantage of volatility and luck, and fortunately both worked out for me,” said Mr. Pallone, when asked about his winning strategy. “I primarily used leveraged and inverse leveraged ETFs, with a focus on natural gas, gold, silver and Bitcoin. I took advantage of volatility through limit buys and sells – this allowed me to buy and sell at the price I wanted. My personal investment philosophy is to buy and hold for the long term but for the Biggest Winner 12, I did the exact opposite of what I would usually do!

The runner-up, Ziad Kayal, from Gloucester, Ontario, secured his second-place position with a cumulative return of 23.34%, earning him $5,000 in this year’s Competition.

I was thrilled and pleasantly surprised, given that the Biggest Winner is tough and you are competing against thousands of people. To maximize my investment potential, I devised a strategy that capitalized on macroeconomics. Initially, I rode the upwards momentum of U.S. and tech stocks by taking advantage of the BetaPro ETFs. Once that approach showed signs of slowing down, I transitioned to cryptocurrency ETFs, which were primed for a significant rally!

As well, six weekly prizes of $1,000 were awarded to each participant who achieved the best single-week returns. Mr. Pallone also secured a weekly prize in addition to winning the overall Competition.

For the Biggest Winner 12, Horizons ETFs also introduced a new way to win prizes: a random weekly draw accessible for competition participants that executed three or more trades in the previous week. Each week, one lucky trader was awarded a $100 Amazon gift card.

The top-traded ETFs in the contest are all managed by Horizons ETFs. The three most-traded ETFs are a part of the Horizons’ BetaPro family of tactical ETFs: the BetaPro Natural Gas Leveraged Daily Bull ETF (“HNU”), the BetaPro Natural Gas Leveraged Daily Bear ETF (“HND”), and the BetaPro Crude Oil Leveraged Daily Bull ETF (“HOU”). HNU seeks daily investment results, before fees, expenses, distributions, brokerage commissions, and other transaction costs, that endeavour to correspond to up to two times (200%) the daily performance of the Horizons Natural Gas Rolling Futures Index. HND seeks daily investment results, before fees, expenses, distributions, brokerage commissions, and other transaction costs, that endeavour to correspond to up to two times (200%) the inverse (opposite) of the daily performance of the Horizons Natural Gas Rolling Futures Index.

HOU seeks daily investment results, before fees, expenses, distributions, brokerage commissions and other transaction costs, that endeavour to correspond to up to two times (200%) the daily performance of the Horizons Crude Oil Rolling Futures Index.

It was a pleasure to preside over my first-ever Biggest Winner and see how Canadians from across the country approached this competition with dedication, skill and a desire to have fun, all while trying out new ETF investing strategies,” said Rohit Mehta, President & CEO of Horizons ETFs. “With our ETF industry continuing to grow and with it, the number of ETFs available to invest in, the Biggest Winner will remain an important way to help Canadians learn, grow and ultimately, become better investors.”

NBDB, a founding sponsor of the Biggest Winner Competition and its past ten editions, believes the contest presents a unique opportunity for investors to learn the ins and outs of self-directed investing.

National Bank Direct Brokerage would like to congratulate Michael Pallone, Ziad Kayal, and the other winners in the Biggest Winner 12 trading competition,” said Claude-Frédéric Robert, President of National Bank Direct Brokerage. “This competition allows participants to refine their investment strategies in a simulated environment and learn more about the mechanics of investing. We are proud to support this contest and help participants improve their financial knowledge.”

In addition to being the listing exchange for all of the ETFs tradeable by participants in the Competition, TSX was also a sponsor of the Biggest Winner 12.

On behalf of Toronto Stock Exchange, I’d like to congratulate Michael Pallone for winning Horizons ETFs Biggest Winner Competition,” said Graham Mackenzie, Managing Director, Exchange Traded Products, TMX Group. “TSX is continuously looking at ways to innovate for investors and clients alike. This Competition allows both new and experienced investors the ability to explore the opportunities TSX ETFs have to offer.”

In total, $21,000 in cash prizes were awarded as part of the Competition. The winners are:

Grand Prize: Michael Pallone, Montreal, QC

Runner-up: Ziad Kayal, Gloucester, ON

Week One: Amin Ebadi, Toronto, ON

Week Two: Meshaal Khan, Brampton, ON

Week Three: Michael Pallone, Montreal, QC

Week Four: Dan Trudelle, Waterloo, ON

Week Five: Fiona Nyugen, Edmonton, AB

Week Six: Devon Yu, Meadow Lake, SK

About National Bank Direct Brokerage (

National Bank Direct Brokerage (NBDB) is a division of National Bank Financial Inc. (NBF), as well as a trademark owned by National Bank of Canada (NBC) that is used under licence by NBF. NBF is a member of the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada, the Canadian Investor Protection Fund, and is a subsidiary of NBC, a public company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: NA). NBDB provides order execution only services and makes no investment recommendations.

About National Bank of Canada

With $418 billion in assets as at January 31, 2023, National Bank of Canada, together with its subsidiaries, forms one of Canada’s leading integrated financial groups. It has more than 30,000 employees in knowledge-intensive positions and has been recognized numerous times as a top employer and for its commitment to diversity. Its securities are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: NA). Follow the Bank’s activities at or via social media such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.

About Horizons ETFs Management (Canada) Inc. (

Horizons ETFs Management (Canada) Inc. is an innovative financial services company with one of the largest suites of exchange traded funds in Canada. The Horizons ETFs product family includes a broadly diversified range of solutions for investors of all experience levels to meet their investment objectives in a variety of market conditions. Horizons ETFs currently has more than $27 billion of assets under management and 113 ETFs listed on major Canadian stock exchanges. Horizons ETFs is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Mirae Asset Financial Group, which manages approximately $710 billion of assets across 13 countries around the world.

For all inquiries:

Please contact Horizons ETFs at 1-866-641-5739 (toll-free) or (416) 933-5745

Commissions, management fees and expenses all may be associated with an investment in exchange traded products managed by Horizons ETFs Management (Canada) Inc. (the “Horizons Exchange Traded Products”). The Horizons Exchange Traded Products are not guaranteed, their value changes frequently and past performance may not be repeated. Certain Horizons Exchange Traded Products may have exposure to leveraged investment techniques that magnify gains and losses and which may result in greater volatility in value and could be subject to aggressive investment risk and price volatility risk. Such risks are described in the prospectus. The prospectus contains important detailed information about the ETF. Please read the relevant prospectus before investing.

The Horizons Exchange Traded Products include our BetaPro products (the “BetaPro Products”). The BetaPro Products are alternative mutual funds within the meaning of National Instrument 81-102 Investment Funds and are permitted to use strategies generally prohibited by conventional mutual funds: the ability to invest more than 10% of their net asset value in securities of a single issuer, to employ leverage, and engage in short selling to a greater extent than is permitted in conventional mutual funds. While these strategies will only be used in accordance with the investment objectives and strategies of the BetaPro Products, during certain market conditions they may accelerate the risk that an investment in shares of a BetaPro Product decreases in value.

The BetaPro Products consist of our Daily Bull and Daily Bear ETFs (“Leveraged and Inverse Leveraged ETFs”), Inverse ETFs (“Inverse ETFs”), Leveraged and Inverse Leveraged ETFs and certain other BetaPro Products use leveraged investment techniques that can magnify gains and losses and may result in greater volatility of returns. These BetaPro Products are subject to leverage risk and may be subject to aggressive investment risk and price volatility risk, among other risks, which are described in their respective prospectuses. Each Leveraged and Inverse Leveraged ETF seeks a return, before fees and expenses, that is either up to, or equal to, either 200% or –200% of the performance of a specified underlying index, commodity futures index or benchmark (the “Target”) for a single day. Each Inverse ETF seeks a return that is –100% of the performance of its Target. Due to the compounding of daily returns a Leveraged and Inverse Leveraged ETF’s or Inverse ETF’s returns over periods other than one day will likely differ in amount and, particularly in the case of the Leveraged and Inverse Leveraged ETFs, possibly direction from the performance of their respective Target(s) for the same period. For certain Leveraged and Inverse Leveraged ETFs that seek up to 200% or up to or -200% leveraged exposure, the Manager anticipates, under normal market conditions, managing the leverage ratio as close to two times (200%) as practicable however, the Manager may, at its sole discretion, change the leverage ratio based on its assessment of the current market conditions and negotiations with the respective ETF’s counterparties at that time. Hedging costs charged to BetaPro Products reduce the value of the forward price payable to that ETF.

This communication is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to purchase exchange traded products (the “Horizons Exchange Traded Products”) managed by Horizons ETFs Management (Canada) Inc. and is not, and should not be construed as, investment, tax, legal or accounting advice, and should not be relied upon in that regard. Individuals should seek the advice of professionals, as appropriate, regarding any particular investment. Investors should consult their professional advisors prior to implementing any changes to their investment strategies. These investments may not be suitable to the circumstances of an investor.

Certain statements may constitute a forward-looking statement, including those identified by the expression “expect” and similar expressions (including grammatical variations thereof). The forward-looking statements are not historical facts but reflect the author’s current expectations regarding future results or events. These forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from current expectations. These and other factors should be considered carefully and readers should not place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date hereof and the authors do not undertake to update any forward-looking statement that is contained herein, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, unless required by applicable law.


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At Horizons ETFs, we believe in education as empowerment. We endeavor to equip Canadian investors with the knowledge and tools they need to navigate the investing world. From the ETF basics to more complex topics like how our suite of inverse and leveraged funds work, our comprehensive learning library aims to be accessible for all investors, from beginners to experienced traders!