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Archive for the ‘ETFs’ Category

Equity mkts: India, Indonesia & Pinoyland looking gd/ Don’t forget S’pore

In ETFs, India, Indonesia on 13/09/2014 at 4:34 am

Examining recent price trends, India has stabilized in dramatic fashion following its dismal performance in 2013.  With superior demographics, a skilled work force, and pro-business leadership, India could prove to be an excellent growth engine over the coming decade.  However, investors should also bemindful of the higher than normal price volatility and look to hold any new investment with a long-term viewpoint.

Circling the globe and focusing in on to the Pacific Rim, Indonesia has had a stellar year following a major decline of over 20% in 2013.  The Market Vectors Indonesia (IDX) is currently up 26.5%, yet appears to still have a lot of room to run to reach its all-time highs.  This ETF is weighted primarily towards large and mid-cap financials, consumer staples, and consumer discretionary stocks.

Indonesia stands to build on excellent GDP growth rates that exceed 5% on a year over year basis. Two thirds of their economy is driven by domestic consumption, which could continue to perform well given their stable democracy and large middle class.  Indonesia also boasts one of the lowest debt to GDP percentages in greater Asian region, which should allow the government to continue its key investments in infrastructure.

Finally, stocks in the Philippines are beginning to show signs of life, with a year to date return of 23.4%.  The iShares MSCI Philipines (EPHE) is dominated by 42 large cap stocks primarily centered around the financial, industrial, and telecom sectors.

Although the Thai protests last year pushed the region into a state of disarray, the Philippines has managed to overcome those fears and has held up relatively well.  The Filipino economy is poised to continue its 2014 run on the back of robust economic growth, increased tourism, and a strong fiscal balance sheet.

In addition, the Filipino peso has been very strong relative to the U.S. dollar and other emerging market currencies.  As a result, GDP growth has exceeded 6.5% over the last two years. These two factors bolster EPHE’s chances of trending higher in the near-term, even despite the country’s moderate levels of wage inequality and foreign investment restrictions.

http://www.investopedia.com/articles/investing/082914/these-little-known-emerging-market-countries-are-star-performers.asp?utm_source=newstouse&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=NTU-9/5/2014

Three-month flows into Singapore exchange-traded funds (ETFs) are on course to reach the most since Markit Ltd began tracking the data in 2009. Investors took money out of the stock and bond funds for five straight quarters through June, the Markit data show. The benchmark Straits Times Index has rebounded 13 per cent from this year’s low on Feb 5 and Singapore’s sovereign debt returned 3 per cent this year.

Singapore shares are the most attractive among Asia ex-Japan and emerging-market equities, beating Hungary, Chile and China, according to a Morgan Stanley study using measures from earnings to corporate governance and technical indicators. The investment bank predicts companies in the South-east Asian city-state will beat consensus earnings forecasts after the economy expanded at a quicker-than-expected pace in the second quarter.

“The Singapore market is somewhat undervalued for a pretty strong growth environment with positive earnings revisions,” said Jonathan Garner, Hong Kong-based head of Asia and emerging-market strategy at Morgan Stanley. “We also like the fact that the market scores very highly in terms of our political risk and corporate governance model.” BT on Tuesday)

Exotic world of US-listed EFTs — What S’poreans are missing

In ETFs, Financial competency, Financial planning on 04/05/2014 at 10:29 am

Of course Mah Bow Tan http://www.tremeritus.com/2014/05/01/netizens-agog-at-mah-bow-tans-fortune/and other millionaire ministers (present and retired) are not among these ‘lesser mortals”..

EFTs are created in the US to enable individual retail investors the ability to access hedge funds, long-short strategies and other areas of the market previously off limits. Here are some of the best picks.

The $700 million IQ Hedge Multi-Strategy Tracker ETF (NYSE:QAI) could be an interesting starting point. As one of the oldest alts ETFs, the fund is basically a hedge fund in one ticker. QAI hopes to replicate risk-adjusted returns of hedge funds using various hedge fund investment styles. It does this by using other liquid ETFs. Current top holdings include the Vanguard Total Bond Market (NYSE:BND) and PowerShares Senior Loan (Nasdaq:BKLN). So far, QAI has managed to provide consistent returns since its inception. Another broad hedge fund style ETF choice could be the ProShares Hedge Replication ETF (NYSE:HDG).

The biggest category of alts fall under the managed futures banner. These strategies take advantage of price trends across different futures contracts including commodities, currencies and stock index derivatives. The WisdomTree Managed Futures Strategy (Nasdaq:WDTI) tracks the Diversified Trends Indicator- which is the benchmark managed futures index. So far, performance for WDTI has been pretty poor as commodities have fallen by the wayside and stocks have rallied. However, that highlights WDTI’s non-correlated status.

Finally, market neutral or absolute return strategies could be winners as volatility returns to the market. The new First Trust High Yield Long/Short ETF (Nasdaq:HYLS) goes long on junk bonds while shorting treasury bonds to profit from the spread and reduce interest rate risk, while the Credit Suisse Merger Arbitrage ETN (Nasdaq:CSMA) uses M&A to profit. CSMA seeks to gain from the spread between when an acquisition is announced and the final purchase price is made. Both funds won’t “hit it out of the park,” but will deliver consistent returns for portfolios.

http://www.investopedia.com/stock-analysis/040714/dose-alternatives-may-do-your-portfolio-some-good-qai-hdg-wdti-rly.aspx?utm_source=basics&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=Basics-4/11/2014

Annualised return of 8.4% using CPF*

In ETFs, Financial competency, Financial planning on 01/04/2014 at 4:34 am

(*Terms and conditions apply)

Only problem is that most of it is via capital appreciation i.e. must sell to get the income.

Straits Times Index EFTs getting an annualised 8.4% over the past 10 years.

While our CPF ordinary account is getting a miserly 2.5% that is getting beat by inflation.

Although we can invest amounts above $20,000 in the CPF ordinary account into approved stocks and unit trust, this rule puts a damper on everyone’s CPF accounts, especially those who are starting to work, or those whose pay is low and those who are not investment inclined.

More important is the fact that just the average dividends given by the STI ETF alone will have beat the 2.5% given by the CPF.

The reply by our government that the interest rate is low because our currency is strong is pure hogwash. If you are using the CPF funds to invest all over the world and boasting that you are getting investment returns that is on par or beat that of Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, that explanation is laughable.

So why not just put all the CPF funds into STI ETFs, get dividends higher than 2.5%, have a more than even chance of getting capital returns with dividend as high as the 8.4% achieve over the last 10 years?

This is one example of the nanny state trying to be too clever.

http://www.financialfreedomsg.com/2014/03/why-dont-we-get-84-on-our-cpf.html?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+FinancialFreedomSg+%28Financial+Freedom+SG%29&utm_content=FaceBook

 

An Exchange Trade Note is not an ETF

In ETFs, Financial competency on 31/03/2012 at 11:14 am

 [T]he buyer of the exchange traded note takes on its investment risk along with a big barrel full of counterparty risk, too. And perhaps some market or liquidity risk as well, as we’ve seen in recent days.

In short, an exchange traded note can be seen as a total return swap, sold to retail investors, that lacks all of the regulatory innovations that have developed over the past few years.

http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2012/03/29/the-trouble-with-exchange-traded-notes/?nl=business&emc=edit_dlbkpm_20120329

How to invest if you are broke

In ETFs, Financial competency on 29/03/2012 at 6:35 am

Something to think abt http://www.investopedia.com/financial-edge/0312/How-To-Invest-If-Youre-Broke.aspx?partner=ntu12#axzz1qSB7HnlK

It’s When You Start And When You Finish

In ETFs, Uncategorized on 16/01/2011 at 7:01 am

Tan Kin Lian, Fisca and yrs sincerely are strong advocates of investing via low-cost ETFs. Hey we not that smart: Warren Buffett advises retail investors to buy low-cost index funds. ETFs are a form of index funds.

But it’s not a no-brainer, risk-free investment strategy. You still can lose money. This US-centric illustration shows why: It’s When You Start And When You Finish.

There are no easy answers when building an egg-nest for yr retirement. Buying life insurance packaged with an investing element is not an easy answer. It is expensive and often is not the answer to building an egg nest. The returns that the agent shows you are not guaranteed. They juz example leh.

Taz why Fisca and TKL advocate by term insurance and invest the rest in ETFs.

One Big Thing We Don’t Know About Stocks

In ETFs, Investments on 08/08/2010 at 6:54 am

Sumething to think about if you are investing in equities for the long term, esp if you are doing it via ETFs or other low-cost index funds.

The only reason we invest in stocks is to earn more than we would get from cash or bonds. The amount you are supposed to earn by taking the additional risk of owning stocks is called the risk premium. If you don’t get paid more for taking the risk, you should put your money in bonds.

Over the last 207 years you got paid 2.5 percentage points more each year (on average) to invest in stocks than you did in bonds.

But you know what they say about statistics, right? In the real world, we have to deal with the fact that, like all averages, this one has some serious problems. Sometimes the risk premium is higher than 2.5 percent, and sometimes it goes away or is hugely negative (say, in a bear market).

Until recently, most of us thought of bear markets as those three- to five-year periods where you grit you teeth and hang on. But recent experience is more painful than that. Read the rest of this entry »

Leveraged ETFs

In ETFs on 25/05/2010 at 6:45 am

A leveraged ETF seeks to deliver a daily return that is a multiple of the return of the underlying index while an inverse ETF provides the opposite performance to the benchmark.

As these instruments reset every day, an investor who maintains a position for more a single day may find his exposure to potential losses if the market turns against him is larger than anticipated due to the effects of compounding.

Regulators have expressed their concerns about the suitability of leveraged and inverse for retail investors, particularly in volatile markets.

ProShares, which offers 19 leveraged and inverse ETFs benchmarked to a variety of regions and countries ,has a “Facts and Fallacies about Leveraged Funds”page on its website.

If you are investing in an ETF because you want to invest in a low-cost index fund (Warren Buffett thinks that most investors shld do so; and so does Tan Kin Lian and his Fisca), make sure you are not investing in leveraged and inverse ETFs.Invest only only in ETFs that are cash-based i.e. that do not use derivatives to track the indices.

STI ETFs — Are there values there?

In ETFs on 06/04/2010 at 5:30 am

The Straits Times Index (STI) is traditionally taken as the barometer of the S’pore stock market and the two ETFs that track it are the most liquid of the ETFs.

But should the STI and the two ETFs be as popular as they should be?

The reason is the presence of the Jardine Matheson, Jardine Strategic and Hongkong Land in the STI, which do not reflect the S’pore economy although apologists point to the operations of Cycle & Carriage Cold Storage, Guardian and Giant embedded within JM. While not peanuts, they are tiny in the Jardines scheme of things.  And, to boot,  they are illiquid and tightly held via cross holdings.

In theory, this means that the STI can be manipulated by judicious buying or selling of these counters. I stress “in theory” because there is no evidence that the STI has been manipulated by the trading  of these three counters.

Sometime back, BT wrote,”The STI’s guardians last week defended Jardine’s inclusion using reasoning that went something like this: ‘we have a set of criteria for index inclusion that Jardine meets, so they’re included’.”

BT went on to to say, “Conveniently omitted is what those criteria are; more interesting is the question of why it is that Jardine Matheson, Jardine Strategic and Hongkong Land, which are in the STI, are not in the more widely-followed MSCI Singapore Free Index*?”. Add to that the FT S’pore Index.

*Widely followed by the pros but not the retail punters. The ETF based on this is illiquid, as it is expensive in dollar terms.

Value in China stocks: Indexation guru

In ETFs, Investments on 03/04/2010 at 3:53 am

Princeton University economist Burton Malkiel, the author of  “A Random Walk Down Wall Street”, a book that introduced many to the idea of investing via indexed-linked funds, sees value in Chinese shares, he tells the FT.

The FTSE-Xinhua index of the 25 largest Chinese stocks quoted in Hong Kong (”H” shares) is different [from the Shanghai "A" shares which he thinks overvalued], he says. This year, while the Shanghai has gained 53.8 per cent, the FTSE Xinhua is up 6.8 per cent – less than the S&P 500.

A “matched pair” study – comparing oil company CNOOC with ExxonMobil, its equivalent in the S&P, and so on – shows that FTSE-Xinhua price/earnings multiples are higher than in the S&P. But their rate of earnings growth is also higher. Crucially, their “PEG ratio” (the earnings multiple divided by the growth rate) is actually lower. So, Malkiel says, Chinese “H” shares are “moderately priced” compared to the S&P.

That is why he is buying China. But Malkiel is not selling his principles. He recommends investing in “H” shares via exchange-traded funds tied to the index – and not backing anyone who says they can beat the market. (Note there is an ETF traded here that tracks  the FTSE-Xinhua index of the 25 largest Chinese stocks quoted in Hong Kong (”H” shares): DBXT FTChina25.)

Bubble or collapse in China?

He would not be surprised if China took a near-term hit. But long term, he believes it is the place to be … He is concerned about asset bubbles forming in real estate, banking, and in the stock market. “This is bound to occur wherever economies grow fast, and China’s expansion over the past decade has been unprecedented in the history of industrialisation.”

But will the economy collapse if any of these asset bubbles burst? “Absolutely not,” says Mr Malkiel. “They will correct, and restart because of the strength of the underlying story and the country’s extraordinary balance sheet.”

He does not think the country can continue to rely on export-led growth for both geopolitical and economic reasons.

“China potentially has the largest consumer market in the world, but its consumption is less than 40 per cent of GDP, a ratio that has not changed over the past decade. In the US, the ratio is about 70 per cent.”

But key reasons for low consumption remain extant: people need to save because there are virtually no government safety nets; and the one-child policy makes it difficult for children to adequately care for their parents.

The divide between the Haves and the Have Nots is what most worries Mr Malkiel. “There are seismic gaps in China between rich and poor, especially seen in the affluent east versus the impoverished central and western regions.”

This has already led to some unrest. Potential instability is a great danger. “But that’s why the government is developing infrastructure, education and a nascent social safety net,” he says.

He contends that a purchasing power-adjusted gross domestic product weighting, which adjusts for the renminbi’s significant undervaluation by this measure, suggests equity exposure of between 6 and 12 per cent.

So how does he (and his clients) invest in China?

As chief investment officer of China-focused AlphaShares, he is certainly helping investors find their way into the mainland. He has crafted a series of indices, some of which are trading as ETFs, that provide specific sector exposure (infrastructure, consumer, technology and real estate) and market exposure (all cap and small cap).

But his firm has also developed a set of private actively managed funds. These include a China-linked fund, which invests in non-Chinese companies that are directly benefiting from China’s growth, and an enhanced index fund – a broad-market fund with an enhanced weighting of small and value stocks. A buy-write fund aims to exploit Chinese market equity volatility by going long the highly liquid FTSE Xinhua 25 Index and writing options against it to pick up premium income. AlphaShares may take these funds public.

Mr Malkiel squares this active management with his long-term embrace of passive investing by citing the inherent inefficiencies in the way the Chinese market functions and is tracked. He believes unprecedented growth, trifurcated shares [mainland, Hong Kong and foreign classes], and volatility present special opportunities that cannot be captured through traditional indices.

Finally, it should be no surprise, he is a bull on emerging markets, and equities in general.

For a 40-something US investor with a family, he is recommending a portfolio with 80 per cent equity exposure. And he thinks half of that should be foreign stocks. He believes long-term investors will be best served with half of this international exposure being in emerging markets such as Brazil, India, and China.

He remains a believer that passive exchange traded funds are the most efficient means of gaining market exposure around the globe. His recommended 50 per cent US exposure is close to the MSCI All-Country World Index weighting of 44 per cent. However, he deviates significantly in his exposure to so-called EAFE countries, the developed world ex-US and Canada. He recommends 25 per cent EAFE exposure versus the global weighting of almost 41 per cent, in the belief that Europe and Japan will not experience significant growth in the coming years.

He departs from market-cap benchmarking even more materially in recommending 25 per cent equity exposure to emerging markets, twice the All-World Index’s weighting.

Mr Malkiel justifies this by citing a perceived fundamental shift in growth away from developed to emerging markets. “My portfolio strategy remains passive, I’m not picking stocks,” he says. “I’m adjusting for economic realities. And we see the need for such investment modification in China where a low free float [on which most indices are based] undercounts China by at least a factor of four.”

Connected post

http://atans1.wordpress.com/2009/12/08/bull-in-a-china-shop-but-will-he-find-value-in-s-chips/




New SGX ETFs for Indon and China exposure

In China, Economy, ETFs, Indonesia on 22/03/2010 at 5:21 am

Investors can now gain exposure to shares listed on the Indonesia stock exchange and on the Shanghai and Shenzhen exchanges.

Two Mondays ago, db x-trackers listed an  ETF tracking the MSCI Indonesia index on SGX. The ETF is Ucits III compliant. This means it is a product  that can be sold to EU retail investors because it meets European regulatory requirements on risk management and operational procedures.

It has also launched an ETF on  CSI 300, an index of leading Chinese stocks. This is also Ucits III compliant.

db x-trackers says its  management fee is only 0.5%.

db x-trackers must be concerned abt the liquidity of these new ETFs because it took out an ad in ST telling people abt these products last friday.

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