All ETF Daily News Articles

Emerging-Market Short Sales Climb Most Since 2007

black-bearShort sellers are increasing bets against developing-nation stocks by the most since March 2007, a signal the biggest rally in 16 years may fizzle as profits plunge from Brazil to Taiwan. Short interest in the iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index fund, which tracks equities in 23 developing nations, climbed 51 percent in March, the biggest jump in two years, according to New York Stock Exchange data compiled by Bloomberg. Wagers against Rio de Janeiro-based oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA’s U.S.-traded shares were the highest since August 2005. Those against display maker AU Optronics Corp. of Hsinchu, Taiwan surged to an eight-month high, the data show. The growth in short sales, where investors borrow stock and sell it on the expectation prices will fall, marks a shift from the last three rebounds in emerging-market stocks. In those cases traders closed out their bets. The MSCI gauge, up 35 percent from its 2009 low on March 2, may drop 10 percent in coming weeks as falling earnings damp investor optimism, ING Investment Management SA’s Eric Conrads said. “We aren’t out of the woods,” said Conrads, a Mexico City-based hedge fund manager at ING, which oversees $12 billion in emerging-market assets. Conrads started betting against developing-nation equities this month, convinced the stocks are in a “bear-market rally,” he said. Full Story:
ETF BASIC NEWS April 24, 2009 11:14am

ETF Plans To Ease Credit Crunch Take Shape

toxicWith trillions of dollars in U.S. government funding already committed to combating the worst recession since the Great Depression, regulators are increasingly enlisting private sector support. Along those lines, lawmakers and Treasury officials are reportedly listening to—and in some cases soliciting—outside views from key leaders in the financial sector. Asset managers focusing on exchange-traded funds are being included in this movement to broaden the scope of U.S. economic recovery plans. As detailed in an analysis of key developments in the effort to thaw credit markets, large ETF sponsors as well as small-yet-influential players are involved. (The full 21-page Special Report, three months in the making, can be viewed here.)  Two ETF Plans Emerge At the heart of the issue is resolving so-called "toxic" debt related to mortgage-backed securities. That alone is estimated to represent more than $1 trillion of regulators' efforts. MBS markets are made upon debt obligations that "represent claims to the cash flows from pools of mortgage loans, most commonly on residential property," according to the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Treasury's plan to breathe new liquidity into this market is called the Public-Private Partnership Investment Program, or PPPIP. While the Treasury was developing the PPPIP program, which was unveiled in March, ETF companies began working on an alternative. Over the past two months, two plans have emerged: One from Invesco PowerShares and the other from Murray Stahl (CEO of Horizon Asset Management) and Robert Holderith (CEO of Emerging Global Advisors). Full Story:
ETF BASIC NEWS April 24, 2009 11:03am

ETF-Based, Sherwood Forest Long/Short Fund (SFCMX) Launched By Sherwood Forest Capital Management

etf-news7Effective February 11, 2009, Unique ETF Fund, With About $10 Million AUM, Evolves From Adviser's Composite With Returns Of 32.03% in 2008, And 41.09% Since Inception 04/01/2007.  CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va., April 24 /PRNewswire/ -- Sherwood Forest Capital Management announced today that effective February 11, 2009, it has launched no-load, Sherwood Forest Long/Short Fund (SFCMX), investing in exchange-traded funds ("ETFs"), both U.S. and overseas.  In making the announcement, Douglas Stewart, Portfolio Manager, said, "This unique ETF fund commences with some $10 million in assets, which we managed previously as separate accounts for our Firm's clients." The previous composite returns (net of fees) were +32.03% for the year ending 12/31/08; and, +41.09% since inception in 04/01/07.  "Now, with this new mutual fund structure," Mr. Stewart said, "We have made our 'proprietary methodologies' for investing in ETFs more widely available to investors." Full Story:
ETF BASIC NEWS April 24, 2009 10:27am

VERSACE: ETFs A Unique Investment Plan

etf-news7The financial and investing worlds both suffer from a number of similar problems including the one that drives the non-professional investor nutty, I suspect. I'm not talking about intricate trading strategies and complex instruments but rather all the acronyms. There's "PE" (price to earnings), "EBITDA" (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization), "DCF" (discounted cash flow), "WIP" (work in process) and a host of others, including "ETF" or exchange-traded fund. It is that last one, ETF, that has grown tremendously in not only product offering but in acceptance over the last several years and it appears that trend will continue. While ETFs have been available in the U.S. since 1993 and in Europe since 1999, in May 2008 there were 680 ETFs in the U.S. with $610 billion in assets, an increase of $125 billion over the previous year per the Investment Company Institute. In the same month, a survey conducted by State Street Research and Wharton underscored how ETFs are changing the investment industry. Per the study, 67 percent of surveyed investment professionals called ETFs the most innovative investment vehicle of the last two decades, and 60 percent of these investment professionals shared that ETFs have fundamentally changed the way they construct investment portfolios. Needless to say, ETFs are worth paying attention to. Full Story:
ETF BASIC NEWS April 24, 2009 10:08am

China buying boosts gold to 3-week high

chinagoldYou may note our story on April 16th where we showed the largest holders of gold in the world, and SPDR Gold Trust (GLD). At that time GLD was the sixth largest holder of gold in the world trumping Switzerland, Japan, The Netherlands, and China in that order. This is a huge swing by China to increase their overall gold holding  from the 10th to 5th position worldwide.
LONDON, April 24 (Reuters) - Gold surged to a three-week high on Friday, boosted by the prospect of further purchases by China, after the country revealed it had been buying the precious metal since 2003. Spot gold was bid at $908.10 an ounce at 1325 GMT from $902 late in New York on Thursday. Earlier on Friday it hit $912.80, a rise of more than 5 percent this week and the highest since April 2. China has raised its gold reserves by three-quarters since 2003 to 1,054 tonnes, confirming speculation that it had been buying in the market for some years. "The massive accumulation of foreign exchange reserves meant gold as a proportion of total reserves had fallen below 1 percent compared with a norm of about 2 percent," said Michael Lewis, head of commodities research at Deutsche Bank ( DB - news - people ). "It could be a short term supportive story because they want to get back to where they were with quite a substantial amount of purchasing for their reserves." China's reserves are now the fifth biggest in the world, with only six countries holding more than 1,000 tonnes. Full Story:
NYSE:GLD April 24, 2009 9:49am

Homebuilder ETFs Run On Housing Data (XHB, ITB)

housing1The new home sales data is showing a very mixed bag, with a bit of a positive twist to it. We are seeing a run up in the SPDR S&P Homebuilders (NYSE: XHB) and the iShares Dow Jones US Home Construction (NYSE: ITB) as a result.  March-2009 new home sales came in at a rate of -0.6% down to 356,000 on an annualized basis.  We had consensus estimates pegged at 337,00 from Dow Jones and 330,000 from Bloomberg.  February was given a sharp revision to its already high +4.7% to a higher +8.2%. Full Story:
NYSE:ITB April 24, 2009 9:36am

Twelve ETF charts with dividends in excess of 5%

dividend3Bigger is better. We see it on all the commercials, bigger burgers, bigger muscles and now The Correct Call brings you bigger dividends. In this week’s ETF screener, we found a dozen ETF charts with dividends in excess of 5% displaying technical analysis buy signals. Ten of the 12 buy candidates are paying stock holders more than 7%. Those are some fat or is it phat? dividends. ETFs with 5% plus dividends:
  • Claymore/Zacks Country Rotation CRO: 5.21%
  • Claymore/Sabrient Stealth STH: 5.39%
ETFs with 7% plus dividends:
  • WisdomTree Dividend Top 100 DTN: 7.01%
  • WisdomTree SmallCap Dividend DES: 7.65% This one really intrigues us as we saw numerous buy signals on small cap ETF charts, especially value. If we had to pick just 1 of the 12 to invest in, this is it.
  • First Trust Morningstar Dividend Leaders Index (FDL) 7.70%
  • CRO      5.21%     
  • STH      5.39%
  • DTN      7.01%
  • DES      7.65%
  • FDL      7.70%
  • DEB      8.35%
  • DHS      8.62%
  • PEY      9.17%
  • DEW      10.13%
  • CGW      10.29%
  • REZ       11.82%
  • PGX       13.54%
Full Story:
NYSE:CGW April 24, 2009 9:25am

5 things you can do now to prepare for rising inflation (GLD, GSG, DBC)

inflation2We all have our little fears: The frayed wire on the coffee maker. That knocking noise from the left-rear tire. The zombies staggering around in the backyard. For investors, one of the biggest fears today is inflation — a period of rising prices. Inflation erodes the buying power of your money at home and abroad. In a worst-case scenario, it can result in hyperinflation, when a wheelbarrow of bills won't buy a loaf of bread.
Right now, inflation is deader than an army of zombies. But massive government borrowing raises the fear that inflation will rise from the grave and eat your savings. But you can fight back — with five inflation-fighting investments......
......Gold: No matter what, it's worth something
Paper money may lose its value, but gold is always worth something. The problem: The price of gold isn't tied terribly tightly to inflation.
For example, the price of gold has barely budged since its 1981 high of $850 an ounce. On the other hand, gold has doubled the past five years, a period of tame inflation. "Gold has been a terrible proxy for inflation since 1981," says Ray Ferrara, a financial planner in Clearwater, Fla.
One reason: Gold prices move opposite the value of the U.S. dollar, rather than tracking inflation. But if inflation does roar, the value of the dollar will fall, too. After all, if a dollar buys less at home, it will be worth less abroad.
•Buy gold bullion coins, such as the American Eagle or Canadian Maple Leaf. Take possession of the coins. Scammers love to pretend to store them for you.
•Consider a gold bullion exchange traded fund, such as the SPDR Gold Shares ETF (GLD). Each share equals one-tenth of an ounce of gold, minus the fund's expenses.
Commodities funds: Prices of materials rise with other prices
Inflation is, by definition, a period of rising prices — not just for gold, but for virtually all basic materials, such as steel, coal, oil and lead.
Clearly, buying a boxcar full of coal has its drawbacks. And small investors who invest in commodities via the futures markets lose early and often.
But you can invest in commodities via exchange traded funds. These funds typically track a commodity futures index, such as the Goldman Sachs Excess Return index, which tracks 24 commodities.
Be aware that many commodity funds have big weightings in energy — which is fine, if that's what you want. TheiShares S&P GSCI Commodity fund (GSG), for example, is 67% invested in energy.
•The PowerShares DB Commodity index fund (DBC) is a highly diversified commodity fund.
•Consider an actively managed natural resources fund. Two funds that have consistently beaten their peers are Vanguard Energy (VGENX) and ICON Energy (ICENX).

Full Story:

NYSE:DBC April 24, 2009 8:01am

We’re In a Recession, So Why Hasn’t the Retail ETF Gotten the Memo?

retailU.S. retailers and the exchange traded funds (ETFs) that track the sector have seen a nice rally for 2009.  But the question is: can it continue? No one can predict the future, but we can certainly look at what’s happening now.  While SPDR S&P Retail (XRT) is down in early trading today, the recent trend has been up. Over the past few days, the sector has been moving in tandem with the overall market, dropping a few points on Monday and then gaining it back the next day.  The reason behind the sector’s volatility is the diversity of companies that it tracks. The driving force behind the sector’s decline is its allocation to department stores.  Last week, Standard & Poor’s lowered the department store group’s credit ranking on concerns that the global recession will hit department stores even harder than previously anticipated.  This news took its toll on big retailers such as  Macy’s (M), Nordstrom (JWN) and J.C. Penney (JCP), sending shares down 9.5%, 7% and 5.6% respectively, states Andria Cheng of The Wall Street Journal. Full Story:
NYSE:XRT April 23, 2009 5:07pm

Playing Platinum & Palladium Ahead Of The ETF Launch

palladiumEarlier this month, London-based ETF Securities (ETFS) filed papers to bring the first bullion-backed platinum and palladium ETFs to the U.S. - a move that may shock many longtime precious metal investors. (see our April 6th article on this: After all, the last time the idea of stateside platinum and palladium ETFs was floated, way back in 2007, it met with so much resistance that ETFS chairman Graham Tuckwell personally quashed the rumors, telling Reuters, "I don't think there will be a listed platinum or palladium ETF in the United States." This time, however, the filing was met with almost complete silence. What changed? Blame it on the Big Three. The auto industry's collapse has changed everything, making it possible for ETFS to bring its platinum and palladium funds - already very successful in Europe - to the States. But as investors grow increasingly hungry for safe havens and cold, hard bullion, could the new funds mean shortages ahead? Full Story:
ETF BASIC NEWS April 23, 2009 4:47pm

Claymore Exchange-Traded Funds Declare Monthly Distributions (UBD, ULQ)

claymoreClaymore Advisors, LLC, is pleased to announce that today the following Claymore Exchange-Traded Funds (“ETFs”) have declared monthly distributions. The table below summarizes the distribution schedule for each Fund declaring a distribution.
Ticker Fund Name Ex-Date Record Payable Total Rate
Date Date Per Share
UBD Claymore U.S. Capital Markets Bond ETF 4/24/2009 4/28/2009 4/30/2009 0.091
ULQ Claymore U.S. Capital Markets Micro-Term Fixed Income ETF 4/24/2009 4/28/2009 4/30/2009 0.017
Past performance is not indicative of future performance. To the extent any portion of the distribution is estimated to be sourced from something other than income, such as return of capital, the source would be disclosed on a Section 19(a)-1 letter located on the Fund’s website under the “Literature” tab. A distribution rate that is largely comprised of sources other than income may not be reflective of the Fund’s performance. Full Story:
ETF BASIC NEWS April 23, 2009 4:21pm

Gold Invest Demand May Outpace Jewelry Demand In 09

gold-jewelry Gold investment demand in tonnage terms may outpace jewelry usage due to investor concerns about the global economy and desire to diversify portfolios, the World Gold Council said Thursday.
"The structure of the gold market is changing," WGC managing director Marcus Grubb told an audience at an ETF securities seminar here.
In 2008 gold investment accounted for 30% of total gold demand and jewelry accounted for 58% of total gold demand.
"In the first quarter I think investment demand could be higher than 30%" of total gold demand, Grubb said.
Grubb said jewelry demand from the world's largest consumer, India, is suffering due to the effects of the recession.
NYSE:GLD April 23, 2009 4:03pm

US-China ETF attracts bullish trades

bullShares of the iShares FTSE/Xinhua China 25 Index Fund rose 43 cents to $31.57 in afternoon trade. The exchange-traded fund holds an index of liquid, large-cap Chinese stocks. Its volume was active after a couple of large volume trades were observed in the January 2010 contract, said Andrew Wilkinson, senior market analyst at Interactive Brokers Group in a note. 'It appears that one investor sold some 30,000 puts at the January $23 strike price for $2.15 apiece' he said. 'The sale represents fresh interest at the strike and implies that this trader is now short 30,000 put options.' He will retain the premium as long as shares stay above $23 by expiration next year. Another investor took a bullish stance at the January 2010 $37 strike price by buying 2,700 calls for a premium of $2.73. Full Story:
ETF BASIC NEWS April 23, 2009 3:55pm

Astor Asset Management named No. 4 Top ETF Manager for 2008

top-performerAstor Asset Management’s ( Long Short Balanced Program was named the No. 4 Best Performing Program by, based on data compiled by Barclays Global Investors’ iShares. Astor’s program began trading in 2001 and has averaged over 6.5% a year since inception with only one down year. Astor uses a fundamental model to determine the direction of the economic cycles for multiple non-correlating assets and uses Exchange Traded Funds (ETF’s) to construct diversified, non-correlating portfolios including: S&P 500 Trust (SPY), PowerShares QQQQ Trust (QQQQ), iShares iBoxx Investment Grade Corporate Bond (LQD), PowerShares DB Agriculture (DBA), and SPDR Gold Shares (GLD). Additionally, Astor uses inverse ETFs, such as Short S&P 500 ProShares (SH), Direxion Financial Bull 3X Shares (FAS), and UltraShort 20+ Year Treasury ProShares (TBT) to hedge exposure during adverse market conditions. “Although we do not like to highlight performance in any one year because we believe that is not productive or even relevant to our goals, we are honored to be among the top performing programs featured by,” stated Rob Stein, managing partner of Astor Asset Management and senior portfolio manager of the Long Short Balance Program. Full Story:
ETF BASIC NEWS April 23, 2009 3:46pm

Bond ETFs Benefit From Narrow Focus

bondsStock exchange-traded funds have been lambasted for slicing the market too narrowly. But with bonds, more precision is what financial advisers need. Investors turned to fixed-income holdings last year to offset plunging stock values. But while Treasurys held up, municipal and corporate bonds cratered alongside stocks. This exposed a problem with many basic fixed-income mutual funds: These are often designed as catch-alls, holding all kinds of bonds and making it difficult for investors to gauge risk. In fund researcher Morningstar Inc.'s "intermediate term" bond fund category, for instance, the 10 best performers had, on average, almost 40% of their holdings in Treasurys and returned about 8.6% in 2008. The 10 worst performers in same category, with only about 6% in Treasury holdings, were down about 30% on average. ETF firms are aiming to capitalize on that kind of discrepancy, hoping financial advisers are ready to replace all-purpose bond funds they previously bought for clients with a mix of several narrow-focus bond ETFs, an approach that may allow them to calibrate risks more carefully. "With iShares ETFs, there are no investment-style surprises," says Christine Hudacko, a spokeswoman for Barclays PLC's (BCS) recently sold iShares unit. "No one needs more surprises now." Investors seem to be responding to the ETF companies' pitch, having poured about $23 billion into bond ETFs in 2008 and another $10.9 billion in the first quarter of 2009, according to a recent report by Morgan Stanley. Full Story:
ETF BASIC NEWS April 23, 2009 3:37pm

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