This Week In ETFs: May 21st Edition

by on May 21, 2011

This week was yet another back and forth ride for investors across the globe. Headlines around the world have been swept up by the recent sexual assault charges handed to now former IMF Chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who resigned from his position soon after the news broke. These past few days also saw oil exhibit extreme volatility, as it bordered the triple digit mark, only to fall back down below $97 per barrel later in the week and then finish at the $100/bbl. level once more. The ETF world saw another healthy week of growth as several new funds launched, including a line of products from big name index issuer Russell. Amid threats of the world coming to an end today, we outline the three best ETF stories from the web this week, to give the investors that are ‘left below’ piece of mind on the future of this budding industry.

ETF innovation could aid hedge fund replication at InvestorDaily:

Hedge funds have long been popular outlets for investors to generate strong returns for their portfolios. But with high fees and low transparency, some grew anxious for a better opportunity that is slowly starting to emerge: factor ETFs. These funds provide “investors with low-cost ways to construct passive portfolios based on commonly-used hedge fund strategies, according to global provider of risk modelling and portfolio optimisation tools Axioma”. With an exchange traded pipeline slowly filling with these factor-based products, many are growing excited about ETFs closing the hedge fund gap.

Five Unheralded Developed Market ETFs To Consider at Benzinga:

2010 was the year for emerging market ETFs, which enjoyed strong gains as well as high popularity. Unfortunately, 2011 has been singing a different tune for these developing market funds, as many have had a rough start. Instead, developed markets have been in the spotlight this year, as their performance has been more reliable for investors dependent on their returns. This article, written by the anonymous ETF Professor, outlines five funds focused on developed markets such as Germany and New Zealand, to help investors find steady income in 2011.

Soros Dumps Gold ETF Assets at ETF Database:

The man who broke the Bank of England has long been known for his pessimism when it comes to investing, though Soros always had a soft spot for gold, until now. It appears that amid volatility in markets, Soros has abandoned his physical gold ETF holdings in massive amounts. In the first quarter of 2011, Soros sold nearly $800 million worth of the precious metal, causing worry for some investors who closely follow his tactics. The news was not all bad though, as he did add a substantial amount of the world’s largest gold miner, believing the miners to be a (generally) sound investment choice.

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Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.