ETF Times: October 18-22

A busy week for ETFs with Lyxor launching four funds in Frankfurt and 22 in Brussels, while Amundi launched 23 in Zurich

Morningstar ETF Analysts 26 October, 2010 | 4:33PM
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Last week was a busy one for Lyxor. The firm launched four ETFs on the Deutsche Borse. The new funds track the inverse performance of different STOXX Europe 600 sector indices, including the Automobiles & Parts, Banks, Basic Resources and Oil & Gas indices. Each ETF charges a total expense ratio (TER) of 0.45%. Lyxor also launched 22 ETFs on the Brussels Stock Exchange. The funds were already available on Euronext Paris and Euronext Amsterdam, but it may be less expensive for investors in Belgium to purchase the products domestically, although the tax consequences will be unchanged (dividends paid by French-domiciled funds are double-taxed). Some of the more popular indices tracked by these funds include the CAC 40, EURO STOXX 50, Brazil's Ibovespa, China Enterprise HSCEI, and some EuroMTS fixed income indices.

Amundi launched 23 ETFs on the SIX Swiss Exchange. Twelve of the funds track the performance of the main equity indices of the world's major industrialised nations, including leveraged versions offering two times their daily performance. There are also three emerging markets products (MSIC China, MSCI India, and MSCI Eastern Europe Ex-Russia), as well as two sector ETFs (MSCI World Energy and MSCI World Financials), and six fixed income ETFs, three of which are inverse funds.

Best and Worst Performers for the Week of October 18-22
The best performers for the week were in the 'soft' commodity space, with cotton and coffee being standouts. The common element was the effect of harsh weather, which has weighed on output forecasts. Cotton also continued its rally based on India's decision to halt exports. Coffee output from large producing regions in both Asia and South America has been hit by unfavourable weather. And sugar continues its upward price surge despite high yields in Brazil as global demand continues to increase. Finally, after a poor performance last week, the Chinese health care sector rebounded strongly.

The S&P 500 VIX Futures was once again the worst performing ETF for the week, as the futures curve for this volatility product remains in a state of contango. The US dollar strengthened ahead of the G20 meeting as the US was expected to push for coordination among countries to avoid competitive devaluations, which hurt the price of precious metals like gold and silver, which are priced in US dollars. The drop in silver and gold also hit the mining sector. Natural gas prices were hit as inventories grew and above-normal temperatures pared demand.

The information contained within is for educational and informational purposes ONLY. It is not intended nor should it be considered an invitation or inducement to buy or sell a security or securities noted within nor should it be viewed as a communication intended to persuade or incite you to buy or sell security or securities noted within. Any commentary provided is the opinion of the author and should not be considered a personalised recommendation. The information contained within should not be a person's sole basis for making an investment decision. Please contact your financial professional before making an investment decision.

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Morningstar ETF Analysts  research hundreds of ETFs available to European investors. The Morningstar Rating for ETFs is based on a risk-adjusted performance measure.

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