From the category archives:

Head-to-Head

It’s pretty darn hard, if not altogether impossible, to read through any sort of financial publication these days without running across some mention of the S&P 500 Index. This revered benchmark has found its way onto the radar screens of countless investors and traders since its inception in 1957. More importantly, the proliferation of ETFs has made it both easy and cost-efficient for anyone with an online brokerage account to access this globally-known equity index; in fact, there are three funds linked directly to this benchmark with over $150 billion in total assets under management and more than a handful of others that employ strategies based around the coveted index [see Visual History Of The S&P 500].

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Imitation just may be the sincerest form of flattery, as any sufficiently profitable ETF idea seems to eventually attract clones. Competition is usually a good thing for investors, as it can drive expenses lower and incentivize fund sponsors and managers to deliver better and better service to investors. At the same time, though, competition can create confusion, so it is helpful to look at similar ETFs on a head-to-head basis to highlight the significant differences between them [see also How To Pick The Right ETF Every Time]. [click to continue…]

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The evolution of the ETF universe has spawned dozens upon dozens of innovative offerings that make it easy and cost-effective to tap into strategies and asset classes that were previously out-of-reach for mainstream investors. With over 1,400 exchange-traded funds to chose from, and new launches every month, some investors might feel a little intimidated when it comes time to [...]

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The S&P 500 is one of the most widely-followed indexes in the world, offering exposure to a basket of U.S. stocks that includes many of the world’s largest corporations. As such, the S&P 500 is a core of many long-term, buy-and-hold portfolios; it isn’t uncommon for this index to make up a substantial portion of [...]

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The proliferation of exchange-traded products has opened up previously difficult-to-reach corners of the investing landscape, allowing for retail investors with online brokerage accounts to access virtually any asset class in an easy, cost-efficient manner. While passive, index-based ETFs have found their way into countless portfolios, many are turning to more innovative funds in search of [...]

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Head-To-Head: EEM Vs. VWO

by on September 25, 2012

The evolution of the ETF universe has spawned dozens upon dozens of innovative offerings that make it easy and cost-effective to tap into strategies and asset classes that were previously out-of-reach for mainstream investors. With over 1,400 exchange-traded funds to chose from, and new launches every month, some investors might feel a little intimidated when it comes time to [...]

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The expansion of the ETF universe continues to foster innovation as the growing product lineup offers investors numerous instruments at their fingertips when it comes to addressing their investment goals. In fact, with over 1,400+ ETPs to choose from, investors likely have multiple ways of accessing a particular asset class. As with any financial instrument, with innovation also comes complexity; as such, [...]

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One important question that is often overlooked when discussing the price of oil is asking who exactly profits (aside from seasoned futures traders) when fossil fuel prices rise. As you might have expected, the answer to the previous question has more than a handful of correct responses; one of these in particular may offer investors [...]

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ETFs have become popular tools for constructing long-term portfolios, with more and more investors utilizing these vehicles as tools to accumulate wealth over the long run. While the bulk of ETFs out there have appeal as securities that can potentially appreciate by a significant amount over an extended stretch, it’s important to remember that not [...]

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With more than 1,400 exchange-traded products now available to U.S. investors, odds are that there will be more than one option for most desired exposures. In many cases, the generally similar products targeting a specific asset class or strategy will deliver generally similar returns. But just because two ETFs have names that sound alike or [...]

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And just like that, another star active manager bites the dust. Earlier this month, one of the most respected mutual fund managers in history announced that he was stepping down after a tumultuous stretch that cast a long, red shadow over an otherwise illustrious career. Bill Miller, who has been the manger or co-manager of [...]

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As the roster of exchange-traded products has grown to nearly 1,300, many investors find themselves with the luxury of multiple options for establishing a position in a desired asset class. There are, for example, four different pharmaceutical ETFs, three homebuilder funds, and even two choices for playing the automotive industry. Once the ETF universe has [...]

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