Published on by on April 14, 2009 | Updated November 18, 2014

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ETF Database in the Press

Alibaba Helps IPO ETFs Grow From Trickle — November 17, 2014

investors logoA handful of ETFs now have a stake in Alibaba. It’s the top holding in IPO as well as KraneShares CSI China Internet (KWEB), with a 12% weighting in each. First Trust U.S. IPO (FPX) allocates 4% to the stock, a top 10 holding. Stoyan Bojinov advises investors to study the methodologies behind different IPO ETFs — “Be aware of the nuances”. 

Cash-Burning Bets on Oil Rebound Surge in U.S. ETF Market — November 13, 2014

bloomberg logoAfter pouring the most money into funds that track oil prices in two years last month, investors are ramping up the bet even further this month, moving cash in at twice the October pace. The trade has gone terribly since investors first started adding to oil ETF positions at the start of October – “Price momentum is still negative, and yet someone is buying”.

These 4 Huge ETFs Could Be Your Core Portfolio — September 11, 2013

dailyfinance logoIn fact, looking at the top ETFs by assets under management according to the ETF Database, you could make a good argument that just picking from the biggest ETFs in the market would leave you with a reasonable starting point for a diverse set of investments.

The Mortgage ETF Space Is Getting Crowded — May 30, 2013

Los Angeles Times.

A growing number of fund companies are looking to tap into the mortgage debt space via ETFs. For example, Fidelity has filed for registration the Fidelity Mortgage Securities ETF, which will normally invest at least 80 percent of its assets in investment-grade mortgage-related securities and also invest in U.S. Government debt.

Tips for Investing in Exchange-Traded Funds – April 5, 2013

Los Angeles Times.

Exchange-traded funds have taken Wall Street by storm in the last few years. But the boom in ETFs may leave some investors confused about how to make the best use of the portfolios, which come in a dizzying array of flavors.

ETF Information Overload! – March 1, 2013

The Wall Street Journal.

As investors continue to flock to exchange-traded funds, many experts are warning that growth in the marketplace is creating a sort of “information overload” for ETF shoppers.

ETFs Producing Big Returns This Year May Only Suit Day Traders — September 12, 2012

Online site (short for ETF Database) did some number crunching the other day and found that over the last year, some of the best products for consistent 52-week performance were four double- or triple-leveraged ETFs and one triple-leveraged ETN, or exchange-traded note.

BlackRock Trails State Street in Junk ETF Rally: Credit Markets — September 10, 2012

State Street Corp., manager of the second-biggest exchange-traded fund that invests in junk bonds, is beating larger rival BlackRock Inc. by buying riskier debt that’s outperforming the safest by the most since 2009.

Black Swan Hedging for the Masses — May 30, 2012

CNNMoney.comInvestors worried about Europe imploding may find solace in two new ETFs that launched Wednesday and offer portfolio protection against so-called black swan events. Coined by economist and former derivatives trader Nassim Taleb, a black swan event is one that’s highly improbable and unforeseen, like the 2008 financial crisis and Japan’s 2011 nuclear disaster.

10 Great Lessons for Bond ETF Investors….and More — May 23, 2012

This article walks through a number of important factors to consider when investing in Bond ETFs, including several key points from ETF Database.

A Trader’s Facebook-friendly ETF — May 18, 2012

ETF Database has a nice rundown of various exchange-traded funds likely to own Facebook (FB). For investors who aren’t deterred by the lukewarm IPO, Stifel Nicolaus ETF trader Dave Lutz has a pick for the social-media niche. Hint: It isn’t the one with “social media” in the name.

Why ETFs can’t ‘like’ Facebook IPO — May 17, 2012

MarketWatchStocks in an ETF represent a particular index. Accordingly, a stock has to be included in that index before it can be part of the representative ETF — a process that takes weeks, and more often months.

ETFs and Indexing: What’s Your Style? — April 23, 2012

“Many of the simplest index funds exchange traded funds attempt to capture the broad market’s performance. One of the main points of indexing is that beating the market most of the time is difficult, and that stock picking to outperform is even harder.”

ETF Providers Could Face Trouble With Transparency — April 16, 2012

“Lower fees and greater trading flexibility than traditional mutual funds are oft-cited advantages that have helped exchange-traded funds attract more than $1 trillion in assets. Another plus that many financial advisers can be heard touting is greater transparency into ETF holdings. But that isn’t being adhered to in a uniform fashion, note investment managers.”

Tech: The Apple of Investors’ Eyes — April 7, 2012

“The most popular of such exchange-traded funds are: Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (ticker: XLK), Vanguard Information Technology ETF (VGT), iShares Dow Jones U.S. Technology Sector Index Fund (IYW) and the ubiquitous PowerShares QQQ Trust (QQQ). Large, long-running funds, they had become fairly boring homes for aging large-caps—before the rock star moved in.”


Scottrade’s FocusShares® Celebrates One-Year AnniversaryApril 3, 2012

“FocusShares LLC, an affiliate of online investing services firm Scottrade Inc., today announced the one-year anniversary of its Focus™ Morningstar exchange-traded funds (ETFs), a family of 15 diverse, low-cost domestic equity ETFs benchmarked to Morningstar® Indexes.”

CNBCAre ETFs a Good Way to Join Apple-mania?March 22, 2012

“Everyone wants a piece of Apple these days, but at $600 a share, it’s pricey. Exchange-traded funds with significant exposure to the tech giant may be a way for some investors.”

ForbesDon’t Wait Too Long To Inflation-Proof Your PortfolioMarch 21, 2012

“Just because inflation readings are currently low does not mean that inflation is not present in the system.  To understand my viewpoint in this regard, let’s first examine some of the more common readings of inflation.”

Is the ETF bubble about to burst? — January 30, 2012
CNN Money
“The challenges of luring in investors and assets, along with the fallout from the financial crisis, has forced firms to shutter more than a few funds. Since 2008, more than 200 ETFs have been liquidated and closed, according to Michael Johnston, co-founder and managing director of ETF Database. Prior to that, only 10 funds closed, he noted.”

A Standard, and Poor, Way of Investing — January 21, 2012
The Wall Street Journal.
“Exchange-traded funds may only be making the market more top heavy. Weighing in at $417 billion, the company with the largest market capitalization in the S&P 500 these days is Exxon Mobil. It is, according to ETF Database, among the top-10 holdings of 85 ETFs.”

Where Best to Compare ETFs — January 7, 2012

“Two Websites ace the data you need to compare exchange-traded funds: XTF and ETFdb have the sharpest tools in the drawer—including illustrated tools that let you search by geographic reach.”

Tools to Help You Sift Through All Those ETFs — December 18, 2011
The Wall Street Journal.
“If you are particularly interested in one stock, say, but would prefer the diversification of a fund or ETF, search on ETF Database,, to see which ETFs have significant holdings in the company. The site also offers a fund checker, which will show you which index ETFs most closely match specific mutual funds. “

Kiplinger.comSeven Best Free Investing Apps For 2011 — August 2011 Issue
This article highlights seven of the best applications out there for investors, including ETFdb’s very own iPhone app. “This is the go-to app for fans of exchange-traded funds. It lets you research more than 1,100 ETFs, stay current on fund launches and read analysis about which ETFs to buy or sell now. No matter whether you’re interested in stocks, bonds, precious metals or what-have-you, the app makes it easy to search for ETFs in any segment of the market.”

The Wall Street Journal.Getting Tripped Up by the Contango — December 17, 2010
“There are a lot of reasons to want exposure to commodities,” says Michael Johnson [sic], a senior analyst with ETF Database, an online provider of ETF research. “It’s just a matter of coming up with the right vehicle.”

CNBCSouth Korean Stocks Could Rise 20%: Auerbach’s Kim — November 23, 2010
Both Korean ETFs were hit hard in the spring, when a South Korean warship sank from what South Korea said was a North Korean torpedo, but they clawed back quickly when investors realized tensions weren’t escalating, said Michael Johnston, senior analyst at ETF Database. The current situation is perhaps more troubling as North Korea is in the midst of handing over power to a new leader, which can be a destabilizing time period, Johnston said.

USA TodayFearful of another flash crash? You can protect your ETFs — November 8, 2010
“We can have a lot of confidence; these circuit breakers are effectively addressing some of the causes that caused the flash crash,” says Michael Johnston, senior analyst for ETF Database, an internet site that tracks ETF news. “I don’t see any way this doesn’t become a permanent program.”

Report: Copper Fund Has An Advantage Over Other Commodities — October 18, 2010
“[ETF Database analyst Eric] Dutram has an analysis piece today that takes a look at JJC’s fundamental prospects going forward, including supply forecasts and how the U.S. dollar’s plight might impact the ETN.”

New Websites Tighten Focus on ETFs — September 25, 2010
“ETF Database ( is another site capable of returning a wealth of information—even for lesser ETFs—but in a different way. The site has an easy-to-use free screener with which to fashion a short list. The Boolean search tool lets you gradually tighten the net around more than 1,000 ETFs traded on U.S. exchanges using the most basic ETF characteristics like expense ratio and market cap. But clicking on any of the resulting ETFs takes you to a very complete profile, many of whose details, such as technical metrics, are not easily found.”

How to Cut Risks and Costs of ETFs — August 7, 2010
“A related and more common issue for both ETFs and mutual-funds investors is concentration risk – the idea that too few holdings account for too much of a fund’s assets or some holdings are outside the fund’s style mandate. If a fund’s top 10 holdings represent less than 20% of its assets, it is diversified, says Michael Johnston, senior analyst for ETF Database.”

The Joys of Dividend ETFs — July 17, 2010
ETF Database is mentioned as a resource for finding portfolio weightings in this “ETF Special Report” from Barron’s.

BNNETFdb Analyst Eric Dutram Discusses Long/Short ETF Ideas On BNN — July 7, 2010
During this live TV interview, Eric discussed several long/short ETF investing ideas in China, Europe, and Japan. ETFdb analysts frequently appear on live TV.

The Wall Street Journal.Using ETFs to Invest in Asian Markets — June 24, 2010
With an expense ratio of 0.73%, the [iShares FTSE/Xinhua China] ETF offers “cheap and efficient exposure to the Chinese market, but the sector allocations may result in unbalanced exposure to various parts of the economy,” notes Michael Johnston, senior analyst at ETF Database.

The Wall Street Journal.BlackRock, Vanguard ETFs Battle for Assets — April 27, 2010
“One of the first screens many investors run when choosing ETFs is liquidity,” said Michael Johnston, senior analyst at, an informational Web site on ETFs. “Investors gravitate to the most-liquid ETFs with the highest trading volume. So the rich get richer, and it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.”

The Globe and MailBig U.S. ETF movers were past dogs — April 5, 2010
“Michael Johnston has done a performance tally of U.S.-listed exchange-traded funds for the first quarter, and has found that many of yesterday’s dogs were star performers. Six of the best gainers in the first three months were ETFs focused on financials, homebuilders, airlines, mortgage finance, Japan and real estate.”

MarketWatchNatural gas ETF flaming out versus oil — March 30, 2010
“In all the furor about potential inflation and the pricing pressure on energy, one amazing anomaly stands out — natural gas. [...] The excellent web site etf db (stands for etf database) has a lengthy and very informative post on the travails at UNG in general and, specifically, on what happened in March.”

ABC NewsStock Market Signals Health Reform Flop — March 19, 2010
As Vote Looms, Closely Watched Insurance Stock ETFs Rally – Bad News for Obama: “‘That the IHF is rallying isn’t necessarily a signal that the market thinks reform will fail,’ countered Michael Johnston, senior analyst at Chicago-based ETF Database.”

USA TodayJust 37 new mutual funds in December — January 10, 2010
“The annual flood of new mutual fund offerings has slowed to a trickle. [...] Most of the new funds were exchange traded funds. [...] New funds continue to emerge, says Michael Johnston, senior analyst for ETF Database (, which tracks the funds.”

CNNMoney.comMore Money Monday roundup: 10% tanning tax & 2009′s hottest ETFs — December 21, 2009
The ETF Database article Best Performing ETFs Of 2009 is featured in this’s More Money roundup post.

Los Angeles TimesDollar bulls run wild; Bill Gross’ bond shifts; the food-stamp economy — December 18, 2009
The ETF Database article Ten ETF Trends for the Next Ten Years is referenced in this Los Angeles Times business section post.

The Wall Street Journal.Web Resources for the ETF Investor — October 5, 2009
In a Wall Street Journal article, ETF Database is highlighted alongside Morningstar, Marketwatch, and others as a top Web site for ETF investors.

Kiplinger.comIsrael Earns an Upgrade — July 20, 2009
In a piece on Israel being upgraded from an emerging market nation to a developed nation, ETFdb Senior Analyst Michael Johnston discusses the potential downside for Israel: “Israel will represent a much smaller percentage of the MSCI World index than it did previously of the MSCI Emerging Markets index, meaning the sellers will likely outnumber the buyers.”

TheStreet.comETFdb ETF Hall of Fame Mentioned in — July 19, 2009
In Don Dion’s weekly ETF Blog Wrap, he says, “I was pleased to learn this week that I have been listed as one of the ‘25 People Who Revolutionized the ETF Industry‘ by the analysts of ETF Database.”

Morningstar ETFInvestorETFdb ETF Hall of Fame Mentioned in Morningstar ETFInvestor — July 17, 2009
Scott Burns of Morningstar ETFInvestor says, “It was quite an honor to be recognized along with such a distinguished group of industry pioneers, analysts and pundits.”

BNNETFdb Analyst Michael Johnston Discusses Iraqi Oil on BNN TV — June 26, 2009
During this live TV interview, Michael discussed news of the Iraqi government auctioning off its oil contracts beginning next week and what it could mean for three oil & gas ETFs: OIL, IPW, and MES. Michael frequently appears on live TV.

Stars & DogsETF Database Lead Analyst Michael Johnston on BNN’s Stars & Dogs — May 25, 2009
ETF Database Lead Analyst Michael Johnston appears as the guest judge on the show, discussing the bull case for Emera (EMA TSX), its possible inclusion in an index (and thus ETFs), and a bit of gossip on the fast rising trend of cash-rich Chinese investors acquiring foreign firms on the cheap.

TheStreet.comPublished Articles at by ETF Database Senior Analyst Michael Johnston
Receiving several million pageviews per month, is one of the most popular all-around investing Web sites. ETFdb Senior Analyst Michael Johnston contributes regularly.

Seeking AlphaPublished Articles at Seeking Alpha by ETF Database Senior Analyst Michael Johnston
Receiving over 1 million pageviews a month, Seeking Alpha has grown to be one of the most-visited and respected Web sites that cover trading and investing with ETFs. ETF Database Lead Analyst Michael Johnston contributes regularly.

Seeking AlphaPublished Articles at Seeking Alpha by ETF Database Analyst Andy Hagans
ETF Database Analyst Andy Hagans also contributes regularly to Seeking Alpha and his articles have been featured as “Editors’ Pick.”