] is about to go where no other exchange-traded fund firm has gone, again. Murray Coleman of Dow Jones reports
that the ETF titan is about to launch the industry's first sector-specific ETFs
tracking US corporate high-grade issues.
The initial three offerings will follow Barclays indexes concentrating
separately on financials, utilities and industrials.
Dan Weiskopf, an adviser and portfolio manager at
Forefront Capital in New York City, called the move "potentially a very significant development for fixed-income ETF investors," allowing them to "tactically diversify in high-grade corporates."
bonds fit the bill as providing relatively safe income at a reasonable
price," Alan Zafran, a partner at Menlo Park, California-based Luminous Capital, told the wire service.
Investment-grade corporate ETFs held $22 billion in assets in 2011,
which was up by 68 percent from a year earlier and 587 percent from
2007. The $19 billion iShares iBoxx
Investment Grade Corporate Bond Fund, according to Dow Jones
, is by far the most popular and
liquid ETF of its kind. More than 36 percent of the fund's assets are
made up of financials, and it has attracted a total of $1.5 billion
net inflows this year. According to iShares, it brought in $3.2
billion in 2011.
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