Daily ETF Watch: China, Factor ETFs Launch

April 16, 2015


PowerShares Plans U.S. Hedged Income Fund

PowerShares has filed for a fund that is designed to provide the income sought by so many investors while at the same time protecting the portfolio from major drawdowns. The PowerShares High Income Downside Hedged Portfolio, according to its prospectus, will be actively managed but with a quantitative, rules-based approach and will seek to outperform the S&P High Income Veqtor Index.


The fund allocates between an equity component in the form of the S&P High Income Equity Composite Index and a volatility component in the form of the S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures Index. While the volatility component is created by holding VIX instruments, the equity component is basically a portfolio of stocks corresponding with the equity index’s components.


Those components include 150 high-yield securities falling into the categories of preferred stocks, MLPs, REITs and a portfolio of global stocks that are either engaged in the property industry or pay high dividends. When volatility is low, the fund will increase its holdings in the equity portfolio and decrease its allocation to VIX instruments, and vice versa when volatility is high.


The closest comparable fund to the PowerShares concept is the VelocityShares Volatility Hedged Large Cap ETF (SPXH | F-79), which owns the stocks of the S&P 500 and hedges that portfolio with an allocation to VIX futures. SPXH comes with an expense ratio of 0.71 percent and has roughly $70 million in assets under management (AUM).


The filing did not include a ticker or expense ratio, but it did indicate that the fund is slated to list on the Nasdaq exchange.


New York Life Completes IndexIQ Acquisition
New York Life Investment Management (NYLIM) has completed its acquisition of IndexIQ, the exchange-traded fund firm known for its hedge fund replication strategies such as the IQ Hedge Multi-Strategy Tracker ETF (QAI | 56), according to a press release issued by the company.


The press release noted that IndexIQ is now an integrated part of NYLIM’s operations, and its products will be integrated into its Mainstay Investments platform.


IndexIQ has $1.7 billion in AUM in its 13 ETFs and a single mutual fund. All that is now part of the $310 billion in AUM that NYLIM oversees.


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