New products and changes introduced over the last week include seven ETFs from First Trust; ; a dividend ETF from Amplify ETFs; two municipal bond ETFs from Van Eck;a collateralized fund from Neuberger Berman and two funds from Elkhorn.
Also, Barron’s 400 ETF was rebalanced; STOXX Ltd. licensed an index to Recon Capital Partners; Oppenheimer Funds launched its (k)ustom Advisor Program; and eMoney Advisor announced a new fiduciary framework.
Here’s more on those and other recent developments of interest to advisors:
1) First Trust Adds 7 ETFs
First Trust Advisors L.P. launched seven new ETFs based on the Nasdaq U.S. Smart Sector Indexes, which are modified factor-weighted indexes designed to provide exposure to U.S. economic sectors. Each has an expense ratio of 0.60%.
The ETFs are the First Trust Nasdaq Bank ETF (FTXO); First Trust Nasdaq Food & Beverage ETF (FTXG); First Trust Nasdaq Oil & Gas ETF (FTXN); First Trust Nasdaq Pharmaceuticals ETF (FTXH); First Trust Nasdaq Retail ETF (FTXD); First Trust Nasdaq Semiconductor ETF (FTXL); and First Trust Nasdaq Transportation ETF (FTXR).
2) Amplify Adds Dividend ETF
Amplify ETFs added the Amplify YieldShares Prime 5 Dividend ETF (PFV), a portfolio of the five highest-ranked U.S. dividend ETFs, based on the Prime 5 U.S. Dividend ETF Index scoring and selection criteria in three categories: high dividend income, low share price volatility and low expenses.
PVF has a net expense ratio of 0.49%.
3) Van Eck Launches 2 Bond ETFs
Van Eck launched the VanEck Vectors AMT-Free 12-17 Year Intermediate Municipal Index ETF (ITML) and VanEck Vectors AMT-Free 6-8 Year Intermediate Municipal Index ETF (ITMS). Each has an expense ratio of 0.24%.
ITML replicates as closely as possible, before fees and expenses, the price and yield performance of the Bloomberg Barclays AMT-Free 12-17 Year Intermediate Continuous Municipal Index, while ITMS does the same with the Bloomberg Barclays AMT-Free 6-8 Year Intermediate Continuous Municipal Index.
4) Neuberger Berman Adds Collateralized PutWrite Fund
Neuberger Berman launched the Neuberger Berman U.S. Equity Index PutWrite Strategy Fund (NUPIX, NUPAX, NUPCX, NUPRX) to provide individual investors with exposure to equity market returns with less volatility.
The fund generates risk-adjusted returns through harvesting premiums from selling puts on U.S. equity indexes combined with the income potential of a conservatively managed collateral portfolio. It has a net expense ratio of 1.76%.
5) Elkhorn Adds Two Funds
Elkhorn Investments, LLC launched the Elkhorn Fundamental Commodity Strategy ETF (RCOM), based on Research Affiliates’ fundamental research, and the Elkhorn Commodity Rotation Strategy ETF (DWAC), based on the relative strength methodology of Dorsey, Wright & Associates.
RCOM provides investment returns highly correlated to the Dow Jones RAFI Commodity Index by investing in exchange-traded commodity futures contracts and other commodity-linked instruments. Its expense ratio is 0.75%.
DWAC is a momentum-based, actively managed ETF that selects the five commodities with the highest relative strength from a universe of 21 commodities. Its expense ratio is 0.99%.
6) Barron’s 400 ETF Rebalances
The Barron’s 400 ETF (BFOR) completed its semiannual rebalancing, adding midcaps and housing stocks.
The growth at a reasonable price (GARP) smart beta index selects stocks twice a year based on the health of their fundamentals and the attractiveness of their share prices. It aims for long-term capital appreciation in excess of traditional market-cap-weighted benchmarks.
7) STOXX Ltd. Licenses Index to Recon Capital Partners
USMR chooses optimal allocation via the best risk-adjusted stocks, given the current market environment. It has an expense ratio of 0.30%.
8) Oppenheimer Funds Adds (k)ustom Advisor Program
Oppenheimer Funds launched its (k)ustom Advisor Program to help defined contribution (DC) retirement plan advisors evaluate the benefits of “semicustom” target-date funds (TDFs) and provide steps for implementing customized investment solutions within retirement plan menus.
The program provides a consulting framework to help plan sponsors evaluate a 401(k) plan’s participant demographics and underlying investments; assess the platform capabilities of recordkeepers and third party providers; develop a semicustom TDF implementation roadmap; and manage fiduciary oversight.
9) eMoney Advisor Announces New Fiduciary Framework
eMoney Advisor announced a series of new products and features, scheduled to launch in late 2016 through 2017, that will provide a more tightly integrated and automated system and enhance functionality to help advisors comply with the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule.
Products and features to come include advisor marketing, lead generation, client onboarding, advanced analytics, partner integrations and compliance and oversight.
10) Intrinio Launches Fintech Marketplace
Financial data provider Intrinio launched the Intrinio Fintech Marketplace this week with the goal of making financial data more affordable and easier for developers to use.
Developers who visit the company’s website can choose from a variety of data feeds, including real time stock prices, FDIC bank data, and fundamental 10Q/10K statements for use in their applications. The data feeds can be accessed in API format with minimal restrictions and self-service signup. Investors can browse the applications developers have built and sign up for data plans to power those applications.
11) Schwab Adds Cybersecurity Tools
Schwab Advisor Services announced a suite of resources and tools to help independent financial advisors develop, strengthen and maintain their cybersecurity defense.
The content aligns with the National Institution of Standards and Technology (NIST) framework, which the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) have encouraged advisors to adopt.
The information in the resource center helps advisors understand the regulatory and fraud environment; assess their work and develop an action plan to strengthen programs; educate employees on roles and responsibilities for protecting firm and client information; and educate clients on best practices for protecting information and on how to maintain their programs.
12) Vanare Integrates with iRebal
Vanare has integrated with TD Ameritrade’s iRebal application programming interface (API) on the latter’s Veo platform. The integration will enhance the capabilities of Spark, Vanare’s online account opening platform, and of NestEgg, its white-label “roboadvisor” solution for advisors.
Advisory firms that serve both digital and traditional clients with custom investment management solutions can now do so through a single wealth management platform and use iRebal’s software for rebalancing, cash management and tax-loss harvesting.