Int'l, High-Yield Will Be ETF Focus In '08
International and high-yield exchange-traded funds will be the focus of the industry this year. Ninety-nine of the 270 ETFs launched in 2007 were either fixed-income or international, according to a study by State Street Global Advisors, and industry officials expect that proportion to rise in the 2008. "The selection of ETFs available is still only filling out," said Tom Anderson, head of strategy and research at SSgA and author of the study. He pointed to high-yield and international and suggested a mix of the two, such as international Treasury bond ETFs. Anderson said that SSgA's launches last year were almost all international or fixed-income, a trend he expects to continue this year. SSgA recently filed for two international ETFs that choose stocks by market capitalization (FA, 1/14).
Jeff Buetow, chief investment officer at XTF Advisors, which manages portfolios of ETFs, last week added more international and fixed-income funds to his portfolios. He said that he would continue to look for international and high-yield offerings this year and expects that to be the focus for new launches and investor interest, pointing to the lowering of high-yield spreads and expected domestic market turbulence as reasons for investors heading to such funds.