From the monthly archives:

July 2009

The excitement has continued to increase in the world of ETFs this week. Here are the ETF Database staff picks of the week’s most important and interesting stories from around the Web: [click to continue…]

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ProFunds Group, the parent company of the ProShares line of leveraged and inverse ETFs, has stepped up its defense of its products it the wake of increased scrutiny of their performance and news that a number of brokerages (including Edward Jones, Ameriprise, and UBS) have suspended the purchase of such products on behalf of their clients. In an open letter posted on its web site, ProShares notes that “how these funds perform for periods longer than a day – particularly in volatile markets – has been raised as a concern in numerous recent press articles.” ProShares believes that leveraged funds have been getting a bad rap as of late, noting “these performance concerns have been subject to a great deal of misunderstanding.” [click to continue…]

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What started last week in St. Louis has set off a domino effect throughout the country. Following the announcement of Edward Jones’ decision to cease offering leveraged ETFs, a number of other firms have distanced themselves from these controversial products:

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If you’ve ever tried to do some analysis on ETFs using customized parameters, you might be aware of how limited and buggy the various online tools are. Often, these tools can take six months or more to include newly issued ETFs, they categorize ETFs wrongly, and don’t include critical search options such as total market […]

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Exxon Mobil, the Texas-based oil giant, reported early Thursday that its second quarter profit fell a larger-than-expected 66% as a result of weak demand, shrinking margins, and lower fuel prices. Excluding one-time items (such as a $140 million charge related to punitive damages in the Exxon Valdez case), earnings fell from $2.27 per share last […]

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Direxion, best known as the leading provider of 3x leveraged and inverse leveraged ETFs, is apparently planning to diversify its product line a bit. The Newton, Massachusetts-based ETF provider has amended a previous filing with the SEC, requesting regulatory approval to launch a 130/30 ETF. Leveraged ETFs have come under fire lately, and while there […]

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Gary Gensler, the chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, seems to be hell bent on imposing trading limits on speculative energy traders. “No longer must we debate the issue of whether or not to set position limits,” said Gensler during hearings on speculation in energy markets. “There are three important questions that do remain: […]

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ETF Securities, the London-based ETF sponsor who has been in the news this week following the launch of its first U.S. ETF, continues to make progress on the development of its “third generation” ETF platform. The company recently announced that assets under management on the ETF Exchange have topped $100 million for the first time, […]

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News broke earlier today that Microsoft and Yahoo! have reached a major search engine deal that will allow Microsoft to become the search engine behind Yahoo!, which will become the worldwide exclusive relationship sales force for both companies’ premium search advertiser. The deal is obviously a blockbuster, one that both companies believe will change the […]

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Perhaps no area in the U.S. (with the possible exception of Michigan) has felt the pinch of the recession worse than the Golden State. California, the most populous state (home to eight of the country’s 50 largest cities) and third-largest by land area, has seen tax revenues plummet and unemployment skyrocket over the past 18 […]

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XShares has announced that it will liquidate its AirShares EU Carbon Allowances Fund (ASO) effective to July 31, 2009, and subsequently dissolve the fund. XShares cited the fund’s small size, inability to attract significant market interest since its inception, and the prospects for growth in the fund’s assets in the foreseeable future in its decision […]

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ETF Database Senior Analyst Michael Johnston appeared on Business News Network’s The Close program earlier today with host Kim Parlee. During his live TV interview, Michael discussed news of the UBS ban on leveraged and inverse ETFs. Watch the full interview at BNN.

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