Today, Franklin Templeton further expanded its lineup of low-cost geographically focused ETFs based on a plain-vanilla cap-weighted approach. The trio of new funds, their tickers and expense ratios are as follows:
- Franklin FTSE Saudi Arabia ETF (FLSA), 0.39%
- Franklin FTSE South Africa ETF (FLZA), 0.19%
- Franklin FTSE Latin America ETF (FLLA), 0.19%
All three list on the NYSE Arca and track indexes provided by FTSE Russell, but FLZA’s underlying index is created through a partnership between FTSE and the Johannesburg stock exchange.
The funds’ underlying indexes all cover the large- and midcap segments, with components weighted by market capitalization, subject to RIC-compliant caps.
Low-Cost Country Revolution
Franklin stunned the ETF industry late last year when it came out with a lineup of 16 country and regional funds priced at a fraction of the expense ratios charged by the iShares family of ETFs, which has long dominated the non-U.S. ETF space.
In February, the issuer added another four funds to its lineup. With the ETFs launched today, the total country funds in the Franklin lineup stand at 23, with more than $570 million in assets under management across the offering. Including the new launches, Franklin Templeton has 39 U.S.-listed ETFs currently trading.
The funds have been priced at 0.09% for developed-market countries, and 0.19% for emerging market countries. FLSA is an exception to that standard, but is still considerably cheaper than the 0.74% charged by the $238.9 million iShares MSCI Saudi Arabia ETF (KSA), the only other ETF to cover Saudi Arabia’s market.
FLZA is also much cheaper than the iShares MSCI South Africa ETF (EZA), which charges an expense ratio of 0.62%, while the iShares Latin America 40 ETF (ILF) up until now has been the cheapest way to gain broad exposure to Latin America. ILF charges 0.48%.
Contact Heather Bell at [email protected]