Introducing ETFdb’s Free Database of Indexes

by on February 8, 2010

With more and more investors embracing passively-indexed ETFs in favor of traditional actively-managed mutual funds, indexes have never been more important. Within even targeted asset classes, differences in the methodologies used to construct a benchmark can lead to unique risk profiles and index composition, which in turn often translate to significant differences in returns.

Given this increased emphasis on index construction and analysis, ETF Database is proud to introduce our Index Database, a collection of all benchmarks underlying U.S.-listed ETFs in an investor-friendly format. The Index Database is organized into nine large categories dedicated to the various asset classes available through ETFs, including leveraged, inverse, and multi-asset class funds. Each index page (see the equities indexes page as an example) contains a complete list of indexes assigned to that asset class, organized by ETFdb Categories.

Each index name in the Index Database is linked to a separate page (see the S&P 500 Index page as an example) that includes a description of the benchmark, a table listing all U.S.-listed ETFs that track the benchmark, and a list of other ETFs in the relevant ETFdb Category. Finally, each index page includes a list of other indexes to which similar ETFs are linked.

For individual investors and financial advisors looking to make the switch from mutual funds to ETFs, the index database should be tremendously useful in mapping existing holdings to more cost-efficient ETFs.

Changes To Ticker Pages

We’ve also made a couple changes to our 900+ ticker pages that we think make them immensely more useful. First, at the top of each ticker page, we’ve added the underlying index and a description for each U.S.-listed ETF (see the page for SPY as an example) is the index tracked by the ETF (in the case of SPY, the S&P 500), along with a brief description of the benchmark. Second, on each ticker page we’ve added a link to the issuer home page for each ETF in the database, allowing users to jump directly from to the site maintained by the ETF issuer that includes detailed information on the fund’s assets and risk profile.

The Index Database and changes to the ticker pages are the first of several improvements to the site we’ll be rolling out in coming months. While we’ve got some exciting things planned for, we’re always interested to hear suggestions from our users on tools, data, and resources that would be useful to you. If you have any suggestions for improvements, please don’t hesitate to shoot me an email or give me a call.


Michael Johnston