ETF Odds & Ends: iShares To Close 7 ETFs

ETF Odds & Ends: iShares To Close 7 ETFs

Plus, the issuer swapped out indexes on two key ETFs.

Reviewed by: Heather Bell
Edited by: Heather Bell

BlackRock’s iShares unit has a habit of closing multiple funds over the summer, and this year is no different.

Seven iShares are set to see their last day of trading on Aug. 23, with proceeds from their liquidation distributed to shareholders on Aug. 26.

The funds to be closed are mainly smart beta products, and include the following:

There have been a little more than 20 closures this year, a sharp contrast to the 140 ETF closures in the first six months of 2020.

Amplify also shut down the Amplify CrowdBureau Online Lending and Digital Banking ETF (LEND) effective June 25. The fund, which launched in May 2019, had $1.2 million in assets under management.

iShares Makes Index Changes

Last week kicked off with a notable development, as the $10.2 billion iShares Biotechnology ETF (IBB) and the $6.5 billion iShares Semiconductor ETF (SOXX) swapped out their indexes for ICE benchmarks.

For IBB, that means it now tracks the ICE Biotechnology Index rather than the Nasdaq Biotechnology Index, while SOXX dropped the PHLX Semiconductor Sector Index for the ICE Semiconductor Sector Index and changed its name to the iShares Semiconductor ETF.

The move on iShares’ part is interesting, because earlier in the month, Invesco rolled out two ETFs tracking the very same indexes IBB and SOXX originally tracked. They even have similar tickers, but the biggest difference is that they have their fees waived through Dec. 17. After that, their expense ratios will be set at 0.19%, which is still less than half of the 0.46% charged by IBB and SOXX.

The Invesco Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF (IBBQ) and the Invesco PHLX Semiconductor ETF (SOXQ) launched on June 11.

However, despite the existence of SOXQ, Direxion is aligning itself with the changes to SOXX. Effective Aug. 25, the Direxion Daily Semiconductor Bull 3X Shares (SOXL) and the Direxion Daily Semiconductor Bear 3X Shares (SOXS) also adopted the same new index as SOXX, dropping the PHLX Semiconductor Sector Index.

Other Name Changes

SOXX was not the only ETF to change its name last week. As of June 23, the VanEck Vectors Real Asset Allocation ETF (RAAX) is known as the VanEck Inflation Allocation ETF.

Effective July 8, the JPMorgan Emerging Markets Equity Core ETF (JEMA) will change its name to the JPMorgan ActiveBuilders Emerging Markets Equity ETF.

As of Sept. 1, the Principal Active Income ETF (YLD) will change its name to the Principal Active High Yield ETF. It will undergo a 2-for-1 forward split on the same day.


Two iShares ETFs, the iShares U.S. Medical Devices ETF (IHI) and the iShares Global Tech ETF (IXN), are set to undergo 6-for-1 forward share splits effective July 16.

Additional Launches

iShares launched a fund that builds out its family of target maturity bond ETFs. The iShares iBonds Dec 2031 Term Corporate ETF (IBDW) covers investment-grade corporate bonds maturing on or around Dec. 15, 2031. It comes with an expense ratio of 0.10% and lists on the NYSE Arca.

IBDW joins a family of 10 other ETFs with funds that mature in each year from 2021 on.

Contact Heather Bell at [email protected]

Heather Bell is a former managing editor of She has also held editorial positions at Dow Jones Indexes and Lehman Brothers. Bell is a graduate of Dartmouth college and resides in the Denver area with her two dogs.