Growth and evolution have been recurring themes in the exchange-traded universe in 2011, as investors are now faced with a diverse product lineup of over 1,400 ETPs. More than 300 of those are new additions in 2011, a year that broke the previous record for extent of product development. And while many of the new ETFs that launched in 2011 are on the small side, some of these funds have come flying out of the gates to attract significant cash inflows.
Through December 13, 18 ETFs that debuted in 2011 had accumulated at least $100 million in assets, an impressive total that illustrates the tremendous growth potential remaining in a market some believed was approaching its saturation point:
1. iShares High Dividend Equity Fund (HDV): This ETF provides investors with exposure to 75 U.S. companies that have provided relatively high dividend yields on a consistent basis. Top holdings include AT&T, Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, Procter & Gamble, and Intel [see Special Report: Dividend ETFs In Focus].
2. PowerShares S&P 500 Low Volatility Portfolio (SPLV): This fund consists of 100 stocks from the S&P 500 Index that have the lowest realized volatility over the past 12 months [see Low Volatility ETFs Attracting Big Inflows].
3. Vanguard Total International Stock ETF (VXUS): This ETF tracks the MSCI All Country ex-USA Investable Market Index, which is made up of a whopping 6,700 stocks issued by companies located outside of the United States.
4. WisdomTree Asia Local Debt Fund (ALD) : This fund gives investors exposure to local-debt denominated in the currencies of Asia Pacific (ex-Japan) countries. ALD is comprised of holdings from South Korea, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, India, China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, Australia and New Zealand [try our Free ETF Country Exposure Tool].
5. WisdomTree Managed Futures Strategy Fund (WDTI): This is an actively managed ETF which employs a quantitative, rules-based strategy designed to provide returns that correspond to the performance of the Diversified Trends Indicator (DTI). The DTI is a long/short managed futures strategy that incorporates a diversified group of 24 liquid components of exchange-traded commodity and financial futures contracts [see Cheapskate Hedge Fund ETFdb Portfolio].
6. PowerShares Senior Loan Portfolio (BKLN): This High Yield Bond ETF is linked to an index that is designed to track the market-weighted performance of the largest institutional leveraged loans based on market weightings, spreads and interest payments.
7. Schwab U.S. REIT ETF (SCHH): This ultra-cheap offering from Real Estate ETFdb Category is comprised of 80 U.S. companies whose charters are the equity ownership and operation of commercial real estate and which operate under the REIT Act of 1960.
8. Precidian MAXIS Nikkei 225 Index ETF (NKY): Precidian, a newcomer to the industry, broke ground when it launched NKY as this was the first Japanese Equities ETF linked to the popular Nikkei 225 Index.
9. Schwab U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF (SCHZ): This ETF is linked to the same index as AGG and BND, the Barclays Capital U.S. Aggregate Bond Index, which measures the performance of the U.S. investment grade bond market. However, SCHZ boasts the lowest expense ratio in the Total Bond Market ETFdb Category, making it an irresistible choice for cost-conscious investors.
10. FlexShares Morningstar Global Upstream Natural Resources Index Fund (GUNR): This ETF provides exposure to a global basket of companies that have significant business operations in the ownership, management and/or production of natural resources in energy, agriculture, precious or industrial metals, timber and water resources sectors.
11. Active Bear ETF (HDGE): This is an actively managed ETF which seeks capital appreciation through short sales of U.S. stocks by employing a bottom-up, fundamental, research-driven security selection process . In addition to utilizing accounting metrics to analyze the income statement, cash flow statement, and balance sheet, HDGE’s fund managers also rely on qualitative factors to evaluate potential short-sale candidates.
12. FlexShares iBoxx 3-Year Target Duration TIPS Index Fund (TDTT): This new offering from FlexShares offers exposure to U.S. inflation protected bonds knows as TIPs, with a targeted average duration of approximately three years.
13. FlexShares iBoxx 5-Year Target Duration TIPS Index Fund (TDTF): This ETF is a close cousin of TDTT, although it’s underlying portfolio of inflation protected bonds have a targeted average duration of approximately five years .
14. PIMCO 0-5 Year High Yield Corporate Bond Index Fund (HYS): Issued by industry juggernaut PIMCO, this high yield bond ETF is comprised of publicly issued U.S. dollar-denominated corporate debt notes that are rated below investment grade and have remaining maturities of less than 5 years [see High Yield ETFdb Portfolio].
15. SPDR SPDR S&P Emerging Markets Dividend ETF (EDIV): This ETF was able to capitalize on increasing demand for current income-generating securities as it provides investors with exposure to 100 dividend paying securities of publicly-traded companies in emerging markets [see Special Report November 2011: Emerging Market ETFs].
16. PowerShares KBW Regional Banking Portfolio (KBWR): This ETF is linked to the KBW Regional Banking Index, which is an equal-weighted index, comprised of 50 holdings, that seeks to reflect the performance of publicly traded companies in the U.S. that do business as regional banks or thrifts.
17. Schwab U.S. Mid-Cap ETF (SCHM): Available for commission free trading on Charles Schwab accounts , SCHM tracks approximately 500 mid cap equities selected from the Dow Jones U.S. Mid-Cap Total Stock Market Index.
18. Schwab U.S. Dividend Equity ETF (SCHD): This ETF tracks an index that is designed to measure the performance of 100 high dividend yielding stocks issued by U.S. companies that have a record of consistently paying dividends, selected for fundamental strength relative to their peers, based on financial ratios [see Dividend ETF Investing: Four Critical Factors To Consider].
Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.