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MUB

After lingering in the background of the ETF industry for the last several years, fixed income funds have stepped up in recent months to become one of the primary drivers of growth. Through the first seven months of 2010, cash inflows to ETFs totaled $49 billion. Of this amount, more than $23 billion has been attributable to fixed income ETFs, reflecting that investors have become increasingly comfortable with the idea of achieving their fixed income exposure within the ETF wrapper. [click to continue…]

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In the past two weeks, many large U.S. corporations have posted solid earnings which has sparked optimism over an economic recovery. However, recent testimony from Fed Chair Ben Bernanke has weighed on the markets and has kept many investors fearful about the near future. In his testimony, Bernanke called the American economic outlook ‘unusually uncertain’ and said that several tools were being discussed in order to help boost the economy. This gloomy proposition left many certain that a double dip was around the corner which has placed an extremely heavy burden on the federal government in order to quickly revive the economy before the November elections while simultaneously keeping the ever-increasing budget deficits in check. As a way to cut back on this deficit while keeping the vast majority of the electorate satisfied, legislators are discussing the possibility of allowing the now infamous ‘Bush tax cuts’ to expire for taxpayers that have an income of $250,000 or more. If the cuts are allowed to expire, the top individual tax rate would raise from 35% to 39.4% next year and many investors could see increased rates on capital gains and dividends as well [see Three ETFs To Protect Against Rising Taxes]. [click to continue…]

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The tremendous surge in ETF assets in recent years has been attributable not to equity funds, but rather to products offering exposure to other asset classes. The number of exchange-traded commodity products has surged, enabling investors to establish exposure to everything from copper to sugar through the exchange-traded structure. Another big growth area has focused […]

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Massive budget deficits brought on by years of reckless spending and low taxes have put many cash-strapped nations such as Greece and Spain in impossible positions. These countries now find themselves searching for ways to cut fat from their bloated budgets and get their fiscal houses in order and avoid the financial devastation that comes […]

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With interest rates near record lows and expected to remain there for the foreseeable future, many investors have begun searching for alternatives to Treasuries that offer more attractive yields (see Five Bond ETFs For Yield-Hungry Investors). Junk bonds and closed-end funds have been popular choices, but some investors in higher tax brackets have embraced municipal […]

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Fidelity To Offer Commission-Free Trading On 25 iShares ETFs

by on February 2, 2010 | Updated April 26, 2013

Fidelity Investments announced today that it will offer its retail customers commission-free online trades for a suite of 25 iShares ETFs. The funds included in the commission-free platform include ETFs in all nine domestic equity style/size categories, as well as international equity and fixed income options. “Fidelity has partnered with the leading ETF provider in […]

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Grail Advisors, known in the ETF world as the issuer responsible for the first actively-managed ETF that allowed managers total discretion, announced today the launch of two actively-managed fixed income ETFs. The Grail McDonnell Intermediate Municipal Bond ETF (GMMB) and the Grail McDonnell Core Taxable Bond ETF (GMTB) began trading on the NYSE Arca Exchange […]

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Barack Obama’s first year in office has, by most accounts, been a mixed bag. The massive $787 billion stimulus plan helped to avoid an even deeper recession, but failed to impact joblessness in any meaningful way. Instead of seeing a downturn in the unemployment rate as promised, Americans have seen the rate grow to double […]

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PIMCO, the Newport Beach, California-based bond fund giant, launched its latest exchange-traded fund on Wednesday, the Intermediate Municipal Bond Strategy Fund. The new ETF, which comes with an expense ratio of 35 basis points, will trade under the ticker MUNI, which was somehow still available. The ETF will be managed by John Cummings, the company’s […]

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Allstate Corp., the largest publicly-traded insurer of homes and automobiles in the U.S., announced this week that it is making some major shifts in its investment portfolio that now exceeds $100 billion. The Northbrook, Illinois-based company announced that it is reducing its exposure to commercial real estate and municipal bonds in favor of corporate debt.

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Invesco PowerShares is scheduled to launch its Build America Bond Portfolio (BAB) on Tuesday, the first exchange-traded product to offer exposure to a new class of fixed income securities. Build America Bonds are different from traditional fixed income securities in several ways, with the potential to deliver attractive real returns with minimal risk of default […]

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Fun And Games With ETFs

by on October 27, 2009

Over the last few years, ETFs have seen a tremendous surge in use and popularity among all breeds of investors for a number of reasons. Some are attracted to the low costs. Others value the tax efficiency and liquidity. I love ETFs (in part) because they facilitate a “top-down” approach to investing. Picking individual stocks […]

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