Monday, June 26, 2006

ETF and growing in focus

Just Yesterday, Rydex Investments will unveil a set of six currency ETFs, called CurrencyShares: Australian Dollar Trust (FXA), British Pound Sterling Trust (FXB), Canadian Dollar Trust (FXC), Mexican Peso Trust (FXM), Swedish Krona Trust (FXS), and Swiss Franc Trust (FXF).

Other recent ETF that have recently just opened have been. Lately, ETFs are getting more complicated. Once known as an easy, low-cost way to achieve broad diversification, ETFs are becoming increasingly focused, allowing institutional investors and other experts to gain exposure to ever-narrower sectors (see, 05/05/06, "ETFs: Sliced, Diced and Razor-Thin"). Fund companies have rolled out 45 new ETFs so far this year, according to Boston-based Financial Research Corp.

Just in the past few weeks more have been added as well, State Street Global Advisors will launch six new ETFs. The new portfolios are: SPDR Metals and Mining (XME), SPDR Retail (XRT), SPDR Pharmaceuticals (XPH), SPDR Oil & Gas Equipment & Services (XES), SPDR Oil & Gas Exploration & Drilling (XOP) and streetTRACKS KBW Regional Banking (KRE). Each will carry an expense ratio of 0.35%. "What we're providing is pure exposure to each one of these industries," says Greg Ehret, senior managing director at State Street.

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