The last twelve months have seen no shortage of excitement in the ETF industry, with hundreds of new products debuting, the competitive landscape continuing to shift, and some interesting controversies arising along the way. As we turn towards what figures to be a very active 2011, it remains clear that ETFs have huge potential, and that further investor education will be critical to continued adoption. As 2010 draws to a close, we look back at some of the most popular articles published at ETFdb over the last year, including a mix of the educational and the entertaining [for more ETF insights delivered to your inbox, sign up for our free ETF newsletter]:
Interest in emerging markets surged in 2010, and thanks to ongoing innovation in the ETF industry there are now more options for accessing this asset class than ever before. But with more options comes more complexity, and obtaining well-rounded exposure to the developing economies of the world is not as simple as buying EEM or VWO. In this article, we detail seven factors that any investor interested in emerging markets should consider.
The rise of the ETF industry has introduced some powerful new tools into the arsenals of all types of investors, but there are some nuances to these products that can impact the ETF experience. In this article, we rattle off ten pieces of advice for more efficient ETF investing–from minimizing expenses to maximizing trading efficiency.
With well more than 1,000 exchange-traded products available to U.S. investors, keeping track of all the options can be a tricky task. In a top heavy industry, there are hundreds of ETFs that are flying under the radar of most investors due to relatively small asset bases or trading volumes. And while many of the newer and smaller products are hyper-targeted or complex funds that likely don’t have much use for long-term investors, there are a number of little-known ETFs that should be considered as “building blocks” of buy-and-hold portfolios. In this article, we highlight ten under-the-radar ETF options that might be worth consideration for client portfolios.
You’ve probably been told at some point to “never judge a book by its cover,” and that adage certainly applies to ETFs as well. While some might assume that “global” ETFs simulate the experience of owning a fractional interest in the global economy, the country allocations made by many of these products can be surprising.
For the most part, 2010 was a period of tremendous growth for the ETF industry. And with that growth came some growing pains–often in the form of unflattering (and sometimes untrue) coverage of exchange-traded products. One such negative commentary came from BusinessWeek, which ran a cover story that advised investors against ever investing in commodity ETFs. This article serves as a rebuttal to the arguments made in that piece, highlighting some of the characteristics of exchange-traded commodity products that weren’t mentioned.
Though immediate concerns about inflation have lessened considerably in recent months, investors are still clearly interested in protecting assets from an unexpected and potentially material uptick in prices. While inflation-protected Treasuries have been the default option for many investors, others are uneasy about the ability of this asset class to deliver a real return in inflationary environments. This article profiles ten alternatives to the ultra-popular TIP, including commodities, certain equities, and ETFs linked to complex quant-based strategies.
One of the major developments in the ETF industry in 2010 was a proliferation of commission-free ETF trading platforms–Schwab, Vanguard, Fidelity, and TD Ameritrade have all launched competing programs. This feature takes a closer look at each of the options, highlighting the strong points and omissions of each.
The increase in popularity of indexing as an investment strategy and ETFs as investment vehicles has had some interesting impacts on asset values. Inclusion of a security in a widely-followed index can now give a considerable boost to stock price, while demotion can lead to an immediate decline. The coming year could see the upgrade of South Korea and Taiwan from “emerging” to “developed” status, a move that could have major impact on the demand for these securities. This article makes a case for steering clear of these economies not because of the underlying fundamentals, but due to the potentially adverse impact of a re-classification.
Many investors were spooked earlier this year when a report claiming that ETFs could collapse suddenly got picked up by the mainstream media. The concept of a “collapsing ETF” focused on the significant short interests in certain products, a scenario that the author argued could lead to a flurry of redemptions that would leave some investors hung out to dry. In this article–which is a little heavy on the technical underpinnings of ETF–we explain why an ETF can’t collapse, and elaborate on just how selling an ETF short works.
ETFs have made it easier to mimic the strategies and of successful investors, and we’ve enjoyed offering up ideas for seeking to replicate Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, and David Tepper–among others–over the last year. But finding ETFs that seem to align with the investment strategies and outlook of the opinionated and often controversial Peter Schiff was particularly interesting.
Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.