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2012 has been a hectic year around the world, but the U.S. has been especially busy this year. We saw two new QE programs, the re-election of Barack Obama, the hottest year on record, extreme weather, and much more. But even still, markets have turned in a solid performance for the year, despite teetering on the edge of the fiscal cliff as the year draws to a close. To help give investors a better view of which market segments outperformed the rest, we outline the YTD performances of the ten largest ETFs in the world [for more ETF news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter]. [click to continue…]

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Are UITs Better Than ETFs?

by on November 26, 2012 | Updated July 8, 2014

The term “ETF” is used by many investors to refer to a wide range of financial structures that aren’t technically 1940 Act Exchange-Traded Funds. Many of the most popular ETFs included in our Free ETF Screener are technically Unit Investment Trusts (UITs), a type of security that functions in largely the same way as an ETF but features some structural nuances that impact the risk/return profile.

[Download How to Pick The Right ETF Every Time].


One primary difference between a straight ETF and an exchange-traded-UIT—such as the S&P 500 SPDR (SPY, A)—is how dividends are handled.

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Innovation has become standard in the ETF industry over the past several years, as a wide range of issuers have launched new and exciting products and pushed the envelope in their efforts to deliver a superior investing vehicle. As those investors in the U.S. celebrate Thanksgiving, we highlight seven innovations for which we’re particularly grateful […]

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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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October may have started off well in the markets, but after a series of poor earning reports major equity indexes went into a tail spin, landing much lower than many expected to be. Many of the new ETFs that were proposed earlier this year are now finally coming to market, offering unique and potentially profitable investment options; […]

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iShares, the largest ETF issuer by total assets, announced the launch of its “Core Series” of ETFs this week. The move involves the launch of a handful of new ETFs, changes to the names and prices of some of the most popular iShares ETFs, and tweaks to the indexes of others. The moves come as […]

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Investors endured another slow trading week with mixed economic data releases on Wall Street, paving the way for another wave of profit-taking. As major equity indexes drifted sideways with a downward bias, several key developments took place on the ETF front; Charles Schwab cut expenses on all 15 of its ETFs while Global X announced […]

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First Trust announced this week the launch of a new ETF that will combine exposure to one of the world’s most widely-followed stock market indexes with VIX call options. The new First Trust CBOE S&P 500 VIX Tail Hedge Fund (VIXH) will seek to replicate an index that includes each component of the S&P 500 […]

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After a mostly down and up week on Wall Street, the ETF pop quiz returns this week with another round of questions about high yield debt, ETFs with big exposure to Europe’s problem spots, and a head-to-head comparison of two major emerging markets. As always, the answers to all the questions below (and many more) […]

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As we approach the halfway point of 2012, we are on track for yet another period of tremendous growth for the lineup of ETFs. More than a hundred new funds have begun trading already this year, and dozens of issuers continue to plan aggressive expansions of their product lineups.  While the blistering pace of expansion […]

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101 ETF Lessons Every Financial Advisor Should Learn

by on May 23, 2012 | Updated June 12, 2014

Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) have burst on to the scene in the late 2000s and early 2010s, raking in hundreds of billions of dollars in assets and prompting a major shift towards indexing strategies in the process. ETFs have empowered financial advisors (FAs), registered investment advisors (RIAs), Chief Financial Officers (CFOs), money managers, and retail investors […]


The evolution of the ETF industry has brought forth a host of strategies previously out of reach for mainstream investors. With over 1,400 products to choose from, investors can tap into an array of asset classes while enjoying the full benefits of the exchange-traded product structure such as ease of use, transparency, and enhanced tax […]

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