When a major gathering like the annual InsideETFs shindig occurs, product manufacturers and distributors come out launching.
That was the case over the past week, as Jim Wiandt’s Index Universe sponsored its 8th annual InsideETFs conference in Hollywood, Fla. As AdvisorOne portfolio channel and Research magazine editor Gil Weinreich reported from the conference, there was no shortage of big investing names speaking and exhibitors displaying their insights and products.
The conference began just days after Schwab announced it was launching a commission-free ETF version of its OneSource mutual fund platform. Beginning with 105 ETFs from six major ETF sponsors spanning all 14 Morningstar asset-class categories, many observers called the launch a game-changer. While other companies have similar commission-free ETF platforms (notably TD Ameritrade) and while some observers called the launch evolutionary rather than revolutionary, Schwab’s market size alone increases the platform launch’s impact, along with the fact that there are no limits on the number of trades investors can make on the platform, nor any hold requirements to discourage active traders.
Among the new ETF launches, on Wednesday Guggenheim Investments launched the Currency Shares Singapore Dollar Trust (FXSG), which it called the first Singapore dollar ETP. The product provides “pure exposure” to Singapore, the company noted in a statement, “by holding actual foreign currency deposits, not derivative instruments.”
William Belden, MD and head of product development at Guggenheim Investments, said the FXSG addition to its CurrencyShares lineup is attractive because it offers both “short-term tactical and long-term strategic opportunities” from the strong Singapore economy and “positive movement in the Singapore dollar.”
Another ETF launch this week came from Market Vectors, which launched BZD, which it called the first ETF “to provide pure-play exposure” to business development companies, or BDCs (see Joyce Hanson’s report on that ETF).