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ETF News Archive

Natural Gas ETF Manager Looks for New Approach

The manager of the giant US Natural Gas Fund (UNG) is responding to an uncertain regulatory enviornment by exploring new ways to gain exposure to the commodity according to an interview with the Wall Street Journal.

In the interview, US Commodity Funds Chief investment Officer John Hyland outlined the steps his team is taking to position the ETF for future growth.  UNG stopped accepting new investment after investors poured nearly $4 billion into the fund between March and July causing the ETF to run out of shares.

UNG was required to appeal to regulators for permission to expand and received a green light this week from the SEC.  However, the cloud of uncertainty raised by recent Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) hearings caused U

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Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Restricts Use of Leveraged ETFs

Morgan Stanely Smith Barney announced that the firm has placed certain restrictions on the sale of leveraged, inverse, and leveraged inverse exchange traded funds (ETFs).

The move comes in response to concerns raised by regulators about the securities.

Specifically, solicited purchases will not be permitted in traditional brokerage accounts. Unsolicited purchases in these accounts will be permitted only subject to enhanced oversight and review.

In addition, no purchases will be permitted in advisory accounts managed by Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Financial Advisors.

One of the world's largest financial services firms, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney serves clients worldwide including corporations, governments, institutions and individuals from more than 1,200 offices in 37 countries.

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Claymore Acquired by Guggenheim Partners

Claymore Group, a leading sponsor of exchange traded funds, has agreed to be acquired by Guggenheim Partners.

Guggenheim is a diversified financial services firm with more than $100 billion in assets under supervision. The firm’s businesses include investment management, investment advisory, investment banking and capital markets services.

Claymore Group is a $13 billion sponsor of exchange-traded funds (ETFs), unit investment trusts (UITs) and closed-end funds (CEFs).

The deal is expected to close in Q3.

See the ETF Directory for a complete list of Claymore exchange traded funds.

Claymore ETF Changes Name and Focus

Claymore Securities has changed the name and focus of the Claymore/Great Companies Large-Cap Growth Index ETF (XGC).

The ETF is now the Claymore/BNY Mellon International Small Cap LDRs ETF (XGC).  The fund will now track The Bank of New York Mellon Small Cap Select ADR Index.

The annual expense ratio of the funds was lowered from 0.65% to 0.45%.

As of June 30, 2009, the Index consisted of 100 securities with a market capitalizations ranging between $282 million and $3.1 billion. The five largest country weights as of the same date were Brazil 23.55%, China 22.93%, United Kingdom 6.00%, Chile 5.82% and Australia 5.73%.

See the Claymore ETF Directory for a complete list of Claymore exchange traded funds.

European Manager Enters US Market with Silver ETF

One of the world's leading providers of Exchange Traded Products entered the US ETF market on Friday with the launch of the ETFS Silver Trust (SIVR).

Introduced by ETF Securities Ltd (ETFS), the ETFS Silver Trust reflects the performance of the price of silver bullion, less the Trust’s operating expenses. The open-ended Trust is designed for investors who want a cost-effective and convenient way to invest in Silver as well as diversify their silver holdings.
ETFS Silver Trust is backed by physical silver bullion held by HSBC in London, one of the world's leading Custodians for precious metals. The Shares represent an interest in physical silver bullion owned by the Trust.

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AirShares EU Carbon Allowances Fund to Liquidate

The AirShares EU Carbon Allowances Fund (ASO) will halt trading and liquidate effective July 31, 2009.

XShares Advisors determined that, as a result of the Fund’s small size, inability to attract significant market interest since its inception and future viability, as well as the prospects for growth in the Fund’s assets in the foreseeable future, it was advisable and in the best interests of the Fund and its shareholders to liquidate the Fund.

Emerging Markets Sector Composite ETF Launches

Emerging Global Advisors expanded its line-up of emerging markets sector Exchange-Traded Funds with the introduction of the Emerging Global Shares Dow Jones Emerging Markets Titans Composite Index Fund (EEG).

The new fund tracks the Dow Jones Emerging Markets Titans Composite 100 Index which includes the 10 top-ranked stocks from each of the 10 Dow Jones Emerging Markets Sector Titan Indexes – Basic Materials, Consumer Goods, Consumer Services, Financials, Healthcare, Industrials, Oil & Gas (energy), Technology, Utilities, and Telecommunications.

The top five countries represented in the Dow Jones index are China Offshore (20.94 percent); Brazil (20.02 percent); India (17.89 percent); Russia (15.95 percent); and <

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FINRA Clarifies Position on Leveraged and Inverse ETFs

After issuing an overly broad regulatory statement on the suitability of inverse and leveraged ETFs, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has clarified its position.

In June, FINRA issued a notice that said "...inverse and leveraged ETFs are typically not suitable for retail investors who plan to hold them for more than one trading session..."

After industry push back on the sweeping nature of the statement, FINRA posted a podcast on July 13 in which it confirmed that FINRA member firms could reasonably recommend that a retail investor hold these ETFs for longer than one day, provided a suitability assessment is conducted with respect to such an investor and the ETF.

The podcast specifically addresses the use of inverse and leveraged ETFs as part of sophistic

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3x Real Estate ETFs Start Trading

ETFs that return 300% of the daily performance of the Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) market have started trading.

The Direxion Daily Real Estate Bull 3x Shares (DRN) and Direxion Daily Real Estate Bear 3x Shares (DRV) seek 300% of the daily performance and 300% of the inverse of the daily performance of the MSCI U.S. REIT Index respectively.  The MSCI index represents 85% of the U.S. REIT universe.

See the Direxion ETF Directory or Investing in REITS with Exchange Traded Funds for more information.

ETF Assets Grow $6 billion in June

ETF assets grew $5.7 billion or 1% in June according to State Street Global Advisors. ETF assets now total $593 billion across 740 ETFs.

Fixed income ETFs saw the biggest growth in June, increasing $3.8 billion or 5%.  Inverse and leveraged ETFs also realized 5% growth, increasing assets by $1.7 billion.

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