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Good Timing for This New ETF


Some new exchange traded funds have to contend with poor timing or dealing with a concept that is not suitable for the market environment in which the fund debuts. Others are more fortunate.

Some other new ETFs even get a little lucky. That could prove to be the case for the SPDR EURO STOXX Small Cap ETF (SMEZ) , which debuts today, the same day that European Central Bank President Mario Draghi announced a negative deposit rate and a long-term refinancing operation of $544.5 billion.

While those efforts and a couple of others do not amount to full scale quantitative easing from the ECB, the headlines were enough to lift some established Europe ETFs to new highs. For example, the WisdomTree Europe Hedged Equity Fund (HEDJ) shot to a new all-time high on volume that is already double the daily average while the SPDR EURO STOXX 50 (FEZ) touched a new 52-week high, also on above average turnover. [These ETFs Were Popular Ahead of ECB]

The SPDR EURO STOXX Small Cap ETF, which has an annual fee of 0.45%, is just the second dedicated Europe small-cap ETF to list in the U.S. and will compete with the popular WisdomTree Europe SmallCap Dividend Fund (DFE) .

In a sign that there is demand for European small-caps in an ETF wrapper, DFE topped $1 billion in asset under management in February, more than doubling its AUM total in just two months. Since then, DFE has grown to $1.65 billion in AUM. [Europe Small-Cap ETF Tops $1B in AUM]

However, SMEZ is not even close to being a “me too” ETF to DFE. The new State Street offering is entirely focused on Eurozone countries with France, Germany and Italy combining for almost 60% of the new ETF’s weight. DFE takes a different approach, allocating almost half its weight to the U.K., Sweden and Switzerland, none of which are Eurozone nations.

The EURO STOXX Small Index, the underlying index for SMEZ, features 96 components with a dividend yield of 2.3% and weighted average market cap of $3.3 billion, which is at the lower end of the mid-cap spectrum, according to State Street data.

Over a third of the index’s weight goes to financial services names with the consumer discretionary and industrial sectors capturing another 34%. The index is up 7.3% year-to-date.


ETF Trends editorial team contributed to this post.

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.