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What About ‘Currency Hedging’ in Gold ETFs?

Posted on 20 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Markets are feeling a bit of a hangover one day after a rowdy, post-Fed rally. Stocks, bonds and gold are all lower. The SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) is down 0.2% on Thursday. It climbed 2% on Wednesday after Federal Reserve policymakers’ lukewarm assessment of U.S. economic growth prompted market watchers to rethink how soon the central bank might raise interest rates.
Michael Dudas, mining analyst at brokerage Sterne Agee, likes the fundamental outlook for gold in the months ahead, as well as the technical picture that shows up on the charts. Barron’s recently highlighted the prospects for gold demand in the Eastern hemisphere. The upshot is that wage growth might allow consumers India and China to buy more stuff, including gold………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Short Oil ETFs in Focus as Crude Prices Keep Falling

Posted on 20 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The oil investing phobia eased somewhat as crude saw the strongest two-week gain in 17 years early February, on sharp spending cuts by big U.S. oil drillers. But this respite was short-lived as oil prices started to dip again. Many hoped the commodity would be able to hold above $50. But to their disappointment, WTI crude fell below $44 a barrel on March 16.
A host of reasons including worries over shrinking storage facility for surplus oil in the U.S. and China, abundant supplies in non-OPEC nations and OPEC caution that production in the U.S. might not slow down before the end of the year hit the brakes on the apparent oil price recovery………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The Fastest-Growing ETFs

Posted on 19 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The business of exchange-traded funds is dominated by three big players: BlackRock’s iShares, Vanguard Group, and State Street, which collectively control 82 percent of the roughly $2 trillion invested in ETFs. Other firms are fighting to gain market share, and several have made their way into Bloomberg Markets’ annual ranking of the fastest-growing funds over the three years ended on Dec. 31.
Charles Schwab Investment Management has two of the funds on this year’s list: Schwab U.S. Large-Cap and Schwab U.S. Broad Market. “Those ETFs are boring as dirt,” says Dave Nadig, chief investment officer at research firm ETF.com, pointing out that the Schwab ETFs track common market indexes. They’re also very cheap, which is their main appeal, he says………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Investors Pull $6.1 Billion From Bond ETFs Amid Fed Concerns

Posted on 19 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Investors dumped exchange-traded funds that invest in bonds ahead of today’s Federal Reserve statement on concern officials would get closer to raising interest rates. Investors pulled $6.1 billion this month from bond ETFs through March 16, or 1.9 percent of total fund assets, according to TrimTabs Investment Research data.
If withdrawals continue at that pace it would surpass the record $8.6 billion monthly outflow those funds recorded in June 2013, after the Fed signaled when it might start winding down its bond-buying program………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Why currency-hedged ETFs are hot

Posted on 18 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

My colleague Michelle Caruso-Cabrera made some very good points on air today concerning investing overseas: because of enormous moves in currency, buying stocks overseas—including ETFs—can be perilous.
As an example, she notes the German DAX index is up 22 percent this year, but the iShares Germany ETF, which measures the performance of the German equity market, is up only 8 percent in U.S. dollars, thanks to the tremendous drop in the euro (down almost 13 percent against the dollar)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

ETF Risk Management in a Strong Dollar World

Posted on 18 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Historically, when the U.S. dollar surges, forward S&P 500 earnings plummet. In the same vein, the last two times that the world’s reserve currency skyrocketed, the U.S. economy slipped into a recession. Come on, Gary. Do you really think that we have already dipped into recession territory? No, I do not.
Yet the idea that the Federal Reserve can permanently prevent an economy (or a stock market) from succumbing to cyclical forces is foolish. In fact, Federal Reserve Open Market Committee (FOMC) members now have to deal with byproducts of six-plus years of zero percent rate policy, including unfamiliar volatility in market-based securities as well as the impatient ascent of the greenback………………………………………..Full Article: Source

U.S. Dollar Takes Gold ETFs For A Ride

Posted on 17 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Gold and bullion-related exchange traded funds have exhibited an inverse relationship against the U.S. dollar, but the moves this time around may not be as severe. Over the past year, the SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEArca: GLD) has declined 16.1%, whereas the PowerShares DB U.S. Dollar Index Bullish Fund (NYSEArca: UUP) jumped 24.2%.
Gold has shown a history of moving inversely with the USD. In 1971, U.S. President Richard Nixon ended the U.S. dollar to gold conversion, sending the dollar into a free fall and lifting gold prices to a peak of $850 per ounce, reports Henry Sanderson for the Financial Times………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Assets in ETFs/ETPs Listed in the United States Reach a New Record High

Posted on 17 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

March 15, 2015 — assets invested in ETFs/ETPs listed in the United States reached a new record high of US$2.089 trillion at the end of February 2015, according to ETFGI’s monthly ETF and ETP global insight report for February.
The US ETF/ETP industry had 1,667 ETFs/ETPs, from 73 providers listed on 3 exchanges at the end of February. March 9th marked the 25th anniversary of the listing of the first ETF in Canada. “Investors allocated the majority of net new assets to equities as the US market rebounded from a difficult January to end February with both the S&P 500 and the Dow up 6% for the month. Volatility declined during the month……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Europe ETF Assets Hit a Record $494B in February

Posted on 17 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Assets invested in ETFs/ETPs listed in Europe reached a new record high of US$494 billion at the end of February 2015, according to ETFGI’s monthly ETF and ETP global insight report for February. The European ETF/ETP industry had 2,109 ETFs/ETPs, with 6,420 listings, from 50 providers listed on 26 exchanges in 21 countries.
March 9th marked the 25th anniversary of the listing of the first ETF in Canada. “Investors allocated the majority of net new assets to equities as the US market rebounded from a difficult January to end February with both the S&P 500 and the Dow up 6% for the month. Volatility declined during the month. Developed markets were up 6% for the month, while emerging and frontier markets were up 3%” according to Deborah Fuhr, managing partner of ETFGI………………………………………..Full Article: Source

New players expected to climb aboard ETF bandwagon

Posted on 16 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The battle for exchange-traded funds is poised to escalate. As ETFs grow ever more popular with investors, the industry expects to see several new players jump into the race, including more of Canada’s big banks and, potentially, mutual fund companies and insurers.
“The growth in ETFs cannot be ignored,” says Atul Tiwari, managing director at Vanguard Investments Canada Inc. “ I think that all of the participants in the industry are looking at it, and probably figuring out how they can make it work within their existing business.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

ETFs turn 25 years old: What has changed since the first launch?

Posted on 16 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The first exchange traded fund (ETF) in the world listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange in Canada 25 years ago this month and since then growth in ETFs has been phenomenal. At the end of February, assets in the global ETF industry totalled $2.9trn, held within some 5,632 products, according to research firm ETFGI.
This reflects an almost universal acceptance of ETFs in North America over this time, but now they are becoming equally popular in the UK. As demand grows, product providers in the UK have had to adapt to the increased competition, and this has especially affected fees, which have come down significantly since ETFs were first introduced over here………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The Ups And Downs Of Currency Hedged ETFs

Posted on 16 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Investors plowed $34 billion was into currency-hedged strategies in February. The biggest, the WisdomTree Europe Hedged Equity Fund (HEDJ), has garnered more than $5.5 billion year to date. What are these strategies and why the sudden interest?
At its core, a currency-hedged strategy is, as the name implies, a strategy that seeks to provide exposure to an asset class while hedging out any foreign currency fluctuations. For why currency exchange rates are important, consider the actions of the Swiss National Bank (SNB) on January 15, implementing a negative interest rate policy and removing the floor under the franc against the euro………………………………………..Full Article: Source

ETFs: What’s Next?

Posted on 16 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Exchange-traded funds have outgrown their upstart stage: They recently cracked the $2 trillion mark in assets and now encompass nearly 1,700 products. Rising markets and investors’ general disappointment with the performance of actively managed mutual funds have supported ETFs’ most recent growth spurt.
But, if they’re going to enjoy a productive adulthood, ETFs must cope with some growing pains. They’ve gotten increasingly complex, and the financial technology that enables their bundling and trading is changing. What’s more, some big money managers have devised fund structures that stretch the original definition of an ETF, a move that could compromise an inherent benefit: transparency to investors………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Precious Metals ETFs: Platinum Trading Under Gold

Posted on 13 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Platinum is trading below gold bullion prices again, but the current pressure on the white metal this time around could be coming from a surge in supply. Platinum has been largely underperforming gold. For instance, the ETFS Physical Platinum Shares fell 6.4% year-to-date and declined 23.9% over the past year.
Meanwhile, the SPDR Gold Shares dropped 1.9% year-to-date and decreased 13.7% over the past year. Consequently, the platinum spot price was hovering around $1,118 per ounce Wednesday while the gold spot price was at $1,154 per ounce………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Why Currency Hedged ETFs Are Just Getting Started

Posted on 13 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Investors in traditional international funds are waking up to the realization that currencies play a vital role in generating returns. The majority of funds that track both developed and emerging markets use a U.S.-dollar denominated structure that faces an uphill battle during periods of prolonged dollar strength.
Dodd Kittsley, head of ETF strategy at Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management, recently wrote a new market outlook report that underscored the headwind a rising U.S. dollar creates for these assets. He pointed out that in 2014 the MSCI EAFE Index returned 5.9 percent in local currency terms, but –4.9 percent in U.S. dollar terms, a difference of 10.8 percentage points………………………………………..Full Article: Source

After 25 years of ETFs, what’s ahead?

Posted on 12 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The exchange-traded fund industry is celebrating its 25th anniversary this month. The Globe and Mail asked Warren Collier, managing director and head of iShares with BlackRock Canada, for his perspective on how ETFs have evolved over the years, and what lies ahead. The reason for creating ETFs was simple: to provide investors with a liquid, single vehicle for accessing Canadian capital markets.
In the beginning, ETFs were primarily targeted at institutional investors who wanted a simple way to hedge exposure or equitize cash holdings; and for non-Canadian institutions specifically, the early ETFs provided simple, liquid exposure to Canadian markets. Since then, the appeal of ETFs has expanded way beyond institutional investors………………………………………..Full Article: Source

February another bumper month for oil ETPs: BlackRock

Posted on 12 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Interest in oil and other energy-related exchange traded products (ETPs) continued for a fifth consecutive month in February with almost $2 billion of inflows, according to the latest global data from BlackRock, pushing assets under management (AUM) to over $13 billion.
This was almost as much as the $13.8 billion of assets under management in broad-basket commodity ETPs, but BlackRock’s Ursula Marchioni, head of ETP research at iShares EMEA, said it fell short of a record………………………………………..Full Article: Source

ETF/ETP assets to break through $3 trillion milestone

Posted on 11 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The global ETF/ETP industry had 5,632 ETFs/ETPs, with 10,902 listings, from 245 providers listed on 63 exchanges in 51 countries. We expect the assets to break through the US$3 trillion milestone in the first half of 2015. There were US$50.7 billion in net new asset (NNA) inflows in February – the second largest NNA month on record.
“Investors allocated the majority of net new assets to equities as the US market rebounded from a difficult January to end February with both the S&P 500 and the Dow up 6% for the month. Volatility declined during the month. Developed markets were up 6% for the month, while emerging and frontier markets were up 3%” according to Deborah Fuhr, managing partner of ETFGI………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Inside The Collapse Of Gold Mining ETFs

Posted on 11 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

It has been long since gold prices saw a shining stretch. The metal delivered massive negative returns for two consecutive years in 2014 and might unfortunately see a brutal stretch this year too.
It is not only one event that is playing foul against the gold market. A combination of factors - the Federal Reserve’s close of the QE policy in 2014, rising rates speculation on the wave of strong U.S. economic numbers, a multi-year high greenback and slowdown in Chinese demand - weighed on gold prices. The drop has technically pushed the yellow metal into a swamp………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Euro Currency ETFs Could Still Tumble Lower

Posted on 11 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The euro and related exchange traded fund have quickly depreciated as the European Central Bank enacted an aggressive quantitative easing program, and things can get worse for the Eurozone currency.
The CurrencyShares Euro Currency Trust has dipped 10.4% year-to-date as the euro currency fell to a 12-year low against the U.S. dollar. The euro was hovering around $1.0711 Tuesday. Meanwhile, inverse euro-currency ETF options have surged to fresh all-time highs. Year-to-date, the ProShares Short Euro, which provides 100% of the inverse or opposite return on the U.S. dollar price of the euro, has increased 11.2%………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Assets In ETFs/ETPs Globally Reached A New Record High Of 2.919 Trillion US Dollars At The End Of February

Posted on 10 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Assets invested in ETFs/ETPs globally reached a new record high of US$2.919 trillion at the end of February 2015, according to ETFGI’s preliminary monthly ETF and ETP global insight report for February. March 9th marked the 25th anniversary of the listing of the first ETF in Canada.
ETFs/ETPs listed globally: The global ETF/ETP industry had 5,632 ETFs/ETPs, with 10,902 listings, from 245 providers listed on 63 exchanges in 51 countries. We expect the assets to break through the US$3 trillion milestone in the first half of 2015. There were US$50.7 billion in net new asset (NNA) inflows in February – the second largest NNA month on record………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gold ETF assets dip to lowest level since July 2011

Posted on 10 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Easing gold import restrictions has not in any way lifted investor sentiment for gold exchange traded funds (ETFs). Since the beginning of this calendar year, gold ETFs have seen only outflows and the assets have dipped to their lowest levels since July 2011. The physical gold market too has remained low after the budget left import duties untouched and mandated submitting PAN card details for purchases above Rs 1 lakh.
In January, gold ETFs saw redemptions of Rs 132 crore, of which Rs 131 crore was outflow. In February, the entire transaction of Rs 74 crore was outflow. In the past several months, gold ETFs have been posting net outflows………………………………………..Full Article: Source

ETFs as a Solution for Cash

Posted on 09 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Money-market fund substitutes have been among the most popular (and least sexy) breed of new exchange-traded funds as investors hunt for yield. These ultra-short-duration bond ETFs look like handy alternatives as the money-market industry deals with new regulations. Still, investors need be careful not to let trading costs erode potential benefits, and there still should be room for plain old mutual funds.
Traditionally higher-yielding alternatives to cash, money-market funds have paid next to nothing for years. The average yield on taxable money funds for individual investors is just 0.01%, or a buck a year for every $10,000 invested, according to Crane Data. That’s down from the 10-year average of 1.42%. Fund companies have plugged the gap with new ETFs that feature slightly higher yields in exchange for a bit more risk………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Volatility draws billions into oil ETFs

Posted on 06 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Billions of dollars are pouring into oil exchange-traded funds as investors, many of them small savers more familiar with stocks than commodities, risk big losses and focus on the chance of huge rewards. Five of the biggest oil ETFs have seen their assets more than quadruple since July to $5.4 billion as the oil market has had a roller-coaster ride, collapsing by 60 percent then rallying by almost a third.
ETFs, designed for investors who cannot or will not buy and sell oil directly themselves, offer easy access and exposure to oil volatility because they are based on traded futures markets………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Are Copper ETFs Back on Track?

Posted on 06 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Copper prices saw a troubled 2014 on Chinese economic slowdown, global growth worries, a multi-year high greenback and a supply glut. In fact, the situation was so messy that copper prices plunged to a five-year low to start 2015. While there are many factors regulating the price of copper, events in China are major contributors as the country is the world’s biggest consumer of this industrial metal, making up roughly 40% of the global copper demand.
Thus, a prolonged manufacturing slowdown in the world’s second largest economy cast a dark cloud over the red metal. The scenario in the U.S. – the world’s second-largest copper user — also turned cold to close 2014………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Fed Ready? New Sit ETF Hedges Hikes In Interest Rates

Posted on 06 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Nobody should invest in bond exchange traded funds without understanding that when interest rates increase, the bond’s price declines. With significant improvements in the economy and unemployment rate, the Federal Reserve is expected to raise rates before 2015 ends. This will affect securities across the entire bond market.
So, what is a bond ETF investor to do? A new exchange traded fund from ETF Managers Group seeks to help investors hedge rising interest rates by using a concept called negative duration that actually creates price appreciation when interest rates advance………………………………………..Full Article: Source

4 Precious Metal ETFs to Fight Inflation

Posted on 05 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The European Central Bank and the Bank of Japan are fighting hard against deflation and this will eventually have an impact on the global economy. Furthermore, underemployment in the United States has been a problem. As consumers earn less money, they logically spend less.
This, in turn, leads to decreased prices for goods and services in order to maintain demand. This is deflation and it’s happening right now…very slowly. To add to the problem domestically, companies are laying off workers due to healthcare reform so they can maintain profits. In addition, the decline in oil will lead to layoffs in that industry as well………………………………………..Full Article: Source

ETFs: Hot metal

Posted on 05 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Commodities may not suit everyone but can be a good diversification tool – especially precious metals. Commodities are hot at the moment. After three catastrophic years oil, copper and silver looks cheaper than ever. For a contrarian investor, this weakness could be an opportunity.
One of the purest ways to access commodities is through exchange traded commodities. Before ETCs were launched real assets like nickel, gasoline and wheat were only available to certain institutions. But commodities will not be suitable for all investors and some products are more risky and complex than others………………………………………..Full Article: Source

ETFs Characteristics for Short-Term Trading

Posted on 04 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) offer the best of both worlds—the benefits of diversification and money management like a mutual fund, and the liquidity and tick-by-tick real-time trading like a stock. Other benefits include lower transaction charges for ETF trading, tax-efficient structures, and a variety of sectors/asset classes/focused investment schemes suitable to the needs of both traders and investors.
Thanks to these features, ETFs have become hugely popular in last decade. With each passing month, new ETF offerings get introduced into the market. However, not all available ETFs fit the short-term trading criteria of high liquidity, cost efficiency, and price transparency……………………………………….Full Article: Source

The First Bitcoin ETF Offers Easy Way to Profit from Virtual Currency (GBTC)

Posted on 04 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The first Bitcoin ETF for “ordinary” investors to buy is almost here… The Bitcoin Investment Trust got approval last week from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) to sell its shares on the OTC Markets. It should start trading within the next couple of weeks. It is currently listed on the OTC Markets “pink sheets” under a temporary symbol, BTCV, but will have a permanent ticker of OTCMKTS: GBTC.
The fund gives investors a way to invest in Bitcoin without going to the trouble of buying Bitcoin and worrying about having a secure place to store it. It marks another step forward in Bitcoin’s long march to mass adoption……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Leveraged ETFs Versus Margin ETFs (FAS)

Posted on 03 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Both leveraged exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and buying ETFs on margin allow you to maximize your upside potential by using debt. On the other hand, if your investments don’t go well then you’re going to suffer substantial losses. The key is to figure out which option is better. But first it’s important to understand the difference.
A leveraged ETF tracks an index, industry, commodity or currency to name a few. There are also inverse leveraged ETFs which means the price-per-share for the ETF appreciates when that index, industry, commodity or currency performs poorly………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Investing in Alternative Mutual Funds and ETFs

Posted on 03 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Alternative investments are gaining popularity, especially those offered in a liquid format by mutual fund and exchange-traded fund (ETF) providers. Mutual fund companies can’t develop new alternative products fast enough to offer to financial advisors or directly to individual investors.
In the past alternatives were offered primarily in investment products like hedge funds with requirements that investors be accredited, meaning they meet minimum income and net worth conditions. In the wake of the turbulence in the financial markets during the 2008-2009 financial crisis they are increasingly being packaged in more liquid and accessible formats………………………………………..Full Article: Source

ETF Performance Report: February

Posted on 02 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

While pullback somewhat in the last week , U.S. equities and stock exchange traded funds advanced toward new highs in February, shaking off the January doldrums. Over February, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 5.6%, the Nasdaq Composite increased 6.7% and the S&P 500 gained 5.4%.
The best performing non-leveraged exchange traded products over the past month include the United States Gasoline Fund (NYSEArca: UGA) up 21.1%, United States Brent Oil Fund (NYSEArca: BNO) up 20.8% and Deutsche X-trackers 2040 Target Date ETF (NYSEArca: TDV) up 19.5%………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Coffee ETFs Tumble, What’s Behind the Slump?

Posted on 27 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Coffee - a top-performing commodity in 2014 - returned a fabulous 50%. The winning streak continued into the New Year as drought conditions in Brazil - the primary driver of coffee’s incredible run-up last year - continued to play foul. Brazil is the world’s top coffee producer and supplies about one-third of the world’s coffee.
However, coffee prices have recently been badly hit, falling to their lowest levels in a year as improving weather conditions in Brazil took investors by surprise. Moreover, there are expectations of more rains going forward. This has raised fears of abundant supplies, dragging coffee prices lower………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The Various Costs of Trading ETFs

Posted on 26 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Investors can access exchange traded funds on a normal brokerage account throughout the day. Consequently, people should be aware of all the explicit and implicit costs of using the investment vehicle.
For starters, investors will typically compare the explicit fee or expense ratio to determine how costly it is to hold onto an ETF. Most have adopted ETFs due to their cheap fees, especially when compared to traditional mutual funds. The average mutual fund charges 1.25%, writes Dan Moskowitz for Investopedia………………………………………..Full Article: Source

3 big surprises in ETF flows so far in 2015

Posted on 26 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

With February almost over, we revisit where U.S.-listed exchange-traded fund money flows are pointing. At the beginning of the year, the answer was “nowhere.” Things have since picked up a lot. One-month flows into ETFs now stand at over $30.7 billion, putting year-to-date inflows at $23.9 billion.
Big surprise No. 1: U.S. equities may be at all-time highs, but year-to-date flows are negative $18.4 billion, thanks to $28.7 billion out of SPY (the largest U.S.-listed ETF). Surprise No. 2: Fixed-income ETFs are the big winners year-to-date, with $20.1 billion of fresh money — 85% of the total ETF flows so far in 2015………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Natural Gas ETF (UNG) Warms Up on Arctic Chills

Posted on 25 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The downslide in natural gas prices, which was being noticed for last one year on lower demand and increasing stockpiles, was finally arrested in early 2015 as a severe winter draped almost the entire Northeastern U.S. This cold snap boosted electricity demand across the region putting natural gas in focus.
Last year, the Polar Vortex caused natural gas prices to jump over 50%. Investors now expect natural gas prices to repeat history in the wake of a great deal of snow in the eastern U.S. Investors should note that temperatures approached 30 to 40 degrees below average from the Mississippi River to the East Coast last week………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Alternative ETFs: Always Know What You’re Buying

Posted on 24 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Three exchange-traded fund industry experts recently discussed how alternative ETFs work and what investors should look out for. Jackie Chin, Managing Director of ETF Platform Management at Charles Schwab; Kevin DiSano, Executive Vice President at IndexIQ; and Mike McGlone, Head of Research at ETF Securities were a part of Charles Schwab’s most recent “Every Third Friday” conference call.
“In this market environment with stocks at all-time highs, bonds at all-time highs with interest rates where they are, it’s certainly a good opportunity to look at these types of investments,” DiSano said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Euro-Hedged Fund Poised to Dethrone Biggest Europe Stock ETF

Posted on 24 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The slump in the euro is reshaping the landscape for exchange-traded funds that buy stocks in the region, catapulting one with built-in currency hedges to the verge of becoming Europe’s biggest equity ETF.
The WisdomTree Europe Hedged Equity Fund has a market capitalization of $11.2 billion, up more than 10-fold from a year ago. It trails the Vanguard FTSE Europe ETF by just $1.2 billion after adding $8 billion since the start of the fourth quarter. The ETF has surged 14 percent over the last year, while its peer with no currency protection has declined 6 percent………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Deep Value Oil ETFs for the Undaunted Investor

Posted on 23 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oil services-related exchange traded funds are among the hardest hit after the plunge in energy prices. For the more risk-tolerant investor, the pullback presents a potential value play on a beleaguered sector. For instance, the Market Vectors Oil Service ETF (NYSEArca: OIH) has declined 21.8% over the past year. Consequently, OIH is currently trading at an 18% discount, according to Morningstar analyst John Gabriel.
The oil services ETF shows a price-to-earnings of 12.6, compared to the 17.3 P/E of the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSEArca: SPY). While oil services stocks look cheap as a long-term play, Gabriel warns that short-term volatility could send OIH lower over the next 12 to 18 months before it settles into equilibrium – companies can not shut down operations overnight and production is expected to rise on increased efficiency and contractual obligations………………………………………..Full Article: Source

ETF outdoes hedge funds in the M&A game

Posted on 23 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

In trying to capitalize on the news of mergers and acquisitions, hedge funds are being outdone by an exchange-traded fund clone. Thanks to stockpiles of cash and low borrowing costs, the dollar volume of global M&A deals rose 45%, to $3.3 trillion, in 2014. That’s the highest level since 2007, according to Bloomberg Intelligence.
It’s an ideal environment for the hedge fund strategy known as merger arbitrage, which involves buying the stock of a company being acquired while selling short the stock of the acquirer at the same time. Because deals can fall through, the stock of the target will initially trade for slightly less than the deal’s closing price. Arbitrageurs hope to capitalize on a valuation gap when the target’s price rises as the deal moves closer to being done………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oil price above $50: three ETFs to watch

Posted on 20 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A respite to the oil price decline has long been due as the commodity has been on a wild ride over the past seven months, having depleted about 60% in price. Increased production resulting in ample supplies, strength in the greenback, slower manufacturing activities in Europe which is buckling under deflationary pressure, cooling geo-political tension in the second half of the year, and sluggish Chinese and Japanese economies pushed oil prices down last year.
After closing out 2014 on a grave note, there was no celebration for oil in the New Year either. WTI crude prices dipped below $50 on a no-production cut call by OPEC. However, when all hopes on an oil price rebound seemed to be lost and some analysts even went on forecasting the price to fall as low as $30/ barrel, the momentum snapped the trend to enter February………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Another Currency Hedged ETF Swells in Size

Posted on 20 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Observers looking for growth within the exchange traded funds industry need not look any further than currency hedged ETFs. Currency-hedged ETF assets grew 48 percent in 2014 to roughly $20.8 billion, and have grown 1,519 percent over the past two years, according to Deutsche Bank, Reuters reports. That number has grown in significant fashion in 2014 and the Deutsche X-trackers MSCI EAFE Hedged Equity ETF is a big reason why.
As has been the case with some other currency hedged ETFs, DBEF’s asset growth has been exponential, but in the case of DBEF, “jaw-dropping” is an accurate descriptor for the fund’s assert-gathering acumen. With 2015 inflows of $2.13 billion (as of Feb. 17), DBEF has nearly doubled in size just this year to over $4.6 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Euro Hedged ETF Tops $10B in Assets

Posted on 19 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The indomitable rise of the WisdomTree Europe Hedged Equity Fund continues as the exchange traded fund has officially joined the $10 billion in assets under management club. Buoyed by year-to-date inflows of $4.34 billion as of Feb. 17, by far the best inflows of any ETF, HEDJ is a $10.6 billion ETF, underscoring a growth trajectory that has been nothing short of jaw-dropping.
Roughly $9.4 billion of HEDJ’s current assets under management total has come into the ETF since the start of 2014. Last year, investors poured nearly $5.1 billion into the ETF, a number surpassed by just eight other ETFs………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oil Price Above $50: 3 ETFs to Watch

Posted on 19 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A respite to the oil price decline has long been due as the commodity has been on a wild ride over the past seven months, having depleted about 60% in price. Increased production resulting in ample supplies, strength in the greenback, slower manufacturing activities in Europe which is buckling under deflationary pressure, cooling geo-political tension in the second half of the year, and sluggish Chinese and Japanese economies pushed oil prices down last year.
After closing out 2014 on a grave note, there was no celebration for oil in the New Year either. WTI crude prices dipped below $50 on a no-production cut call by OPEC. However, when all hopes on an oil price rebound seemed to be lost and some analysts even went on forecasting the price to fall as low as $30/ barrel, the momentum snapped the trend to enter February……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Weighing the advantages of an all-ETF portfolio

Posted on 19 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

There’s a natural progression in the way the public responds to innovation. Something that first seems like a mere novelty becomes an interesting new niche, then a great idea and then, “How did we ever get along without this?”
In financial services, exchange-traded funds are somewhere around the third or fourth stage, between new niche and great idea. ETFs attracted more net investment last year ($239 billion) than did mutual funds ($225 billion), according to data from Morningstar. Five years earlier the net inflow into mutual funds was more than triple the net amount invested in ETFs………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Futures Exchange-Traded Funds

Posted on 19 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Investing in commodities has grown more popular in last few years and today they find a place in any well-diversified portfolio. Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) offer multiple benefits like diversification, professional money management of a mutual fund, and real-time trading of a stock listed on an exchange. Commodity ETFs provide an efficient mode of investing and trading commodities and come in three flavors:
Physical-based ETFs: Such funds invest directly in physical commodities like gold, crude oil, or grains, while bearing the additional cost of transport, storage, and security. Equity-based ETFs: These invest in stocks of commodity-based companies, such as shares in oil companies like Royal Dutch Shell (RDS-A). Such ETFs avoid the hassles of commodity storage and operational issues. However, they carry stock-specific and overall market risks………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Paulson holds gold ETF in Q4 but cuts back on some miners

Posted on 18 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge fund Paulson & Co kept its stake in the gold-backed exchange-traded fund SPDR Gold Trust unchanged for a fifth straight quarter in the three months ending Dec. 31, a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission showed on Tuesday.
The New York-based fund, led by longtime gold bull John Paulson, owned more than 10.2 million shares worth $1.16 billion in the ETF at year-end as bullion prices fell. The stake’s value was cut from $1.19 billion in the third quarter………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Commodity ETFs Vs Futures: Different Exposure, Different Price

Posted on 18 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Long Only Commodities as an asset class has been plummeting since around April last year, and the downtrend continues into 2015. The average move of commodity futures in January came out to be -5.02%, compared to ETFs -7.54%, with ETFs underperforming the futures markets they supposedly track by 2.52% {Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results}.
Here’s our monthly look at: 1. How the numerous commodity ETFs which have sprung onto the scene the past few years are tracking a simple strategy of just buying the December futures market of that commodity, under the theory that the ETF will have to roll their positions periodically throughout the year, and in doing so take on costs the simple strategy does not have………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Do Commodity ETFs Deserve A Place In Your Portfolio?

Posted on 18 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The deflationary price action of commodities over the last several years has brought into question whether investments such as gold, oil, or agriculture deserve a place in your investment portfolio. Many of these asset classes are traded on futures exchanges, but are easily accessible in a highly liquid and relatively low-cost exchange-traded fund.
The physical act of investing in commodities is easy. You can purchase a single asset class such as the United States Oil Fund (USO) or a diversified basket such as the iPath Dow Jones UBS Commodity Total Return ETN (DJP). Either way, you are going to get instant exposure to the daily price fluctuations of the underlying commodity index………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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