The first full trading week of the new year has shaped out to be fairly tame considering the very bullish start in 2013. With no major economic data releases to digest this week investors have turned their attention to corporate earnings, and Alcoa has kicked off the season on an upbeat note. Activity on the product launch front has also been quiet, with the most recent launch coming from iShares and its debut of the S&P MLP ETN (IMLP) on January 4; the development pipeline has, however, started to fill up as ProShares and newcomer Artivest Advisers have filed with the SEC [see ETF Launch Center].
Industry veteran ProShares, perhaps best known for their leveraged and short funds, is planning to expand its lineup of equity-focused offerings with an interesting proposal [see our Alternatives ETF Center]:
- ProShares Global Direct Infrastructure ETF: According to the SEC filing, this ETF will seek to track the performance of the NMX 30 Infrastructure Global Index. The underlying portfolio will consist of 30 of the largest, most liquid, publicly-listed companies from global markets that are engaged in the development and provision of basic infrastructure facilities; some of the sub-sectors eligible for inclusion are toll roads/bridges, airports, pipeline networks, communications networks and power grids [see our Simple Safe Haven ETFdb Portfolio].
The proposed ProShares ETF will face some stiff competition as the Utilities ETF space is already dominated by veteran funds from State Street (XLU, A) and Vanguard (VPU, A+); the SEC filing made no mention of expense fees, although it should fall in line with the category average of 0.58%. New York-based RIA Artivest Advisers LLC is planning to enter the ETF industry as the firm has filed for exemptive relief, which would give them permission to launch actively-managed funds [see 101 ETF Lessons Every Financial Advisor Should Learn]:
- Commodities Supercycle Artivest Trust ETF: According to the SEC filing, this fund will seek long-term total returns; the ETF will pursue an active strategy that uses long and short positions in equity and fixed income securities whose performance is driven in part by commodity price movements.
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Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.