Odds & Ends: ETF Closures Mark Busy Week

August 22, 2022

The week ending Aug. 19 saw just a handful of launches, but closures were a key development. At the end of last week, the completed and planned closures in 2022 surpassed the number of closures in all of 2021, the slowest calendar year for launches in roughly a decade.  

The new announced closures bring the total for this year so far to 80 versus 79 for all of last year. Among them were the DriveWealth Power Saver ETF (EERN) and the DriveWealth Steady Saver ETF (STBL), which launched a little more than a year ago and never gathered more than a few hundred thousand dollars in assets under management. They will see their last day of trading on Aug. 29.  

The AdvisorShares North Square McKee ESG Core Bond ETF (MENV) has less than $4 million in assets despite launching in June 2011. Its last day of trading will be Aug. 31. Meanwhile, the Premise Capital Diversified Tactical ETF (TCTL), which rolled out in October 2016 and has less than $35 million in assets, will see its final day of trading as of Sept. 7.  

On Wednesday, the Morgan Creek - Exos SPAC Originated ETF (SPXZ) ceased to trade after the market closed. It launched in January 2021. 

New ETFs 

The five ETFs that launched this week included the ConvexityShares Daily 1.5x SPIKES Futures ETF (SPKY) and the ConvexityShares 1x SPIKES Futures ETF (SPKX), which launched on Tuesday and offer exposure to the T3 SPIKE Front 2 Futures Index. SPKY offers 1.5 times exposure to the index, while SPKX provides unleveraged exposure to the same index. The index underlying the funds is designed to benefit from spikes in volatility. While SPKY comes with an expense ratio of 0.79%, SPKX charges 0.65%. Both funds list on the NYSE Arca.  

On Wednesday, the actively managed Argent Mid Cap ETF (AMID) launched on the Nasdaq stock exchange with an expense ratio of 0.52%. The fund targets companies falling within the size range of the Russell MidCap Index that are undergoing positive changes, with the goal of selecting 35 to 50 stocks for the portfolio.  

On Thursday, the Aztlan Global Stock Selection DM SMID ETF (AZTD) rolled out. It tracks the Solactive Aztlan Global Developed Markets SMID Cap Index, which covers small and midcap stocks from North America, Western Europe and Asia. The index incorporates a number of factors such as cash flow, value, growth and capital structure among other criteria in its selection process. The fund comes with an expense ratio of 0.75% and lists on the NYSE Arca. 

ETF Changes 

A number of funds are making material changes.  

Most notably, the entire lineup of eight Inspire ETFs marketed to the conservative evangelical community will drop the “ESG” from their names as of Aug. 22. The firm had added the initials to their “biblically responsible” funds that invest according to the values of evangelical Christianity at the end of March.

The issuer released a press release that noted the backlash against ESG strategies, stating "the term has received backlash from conservatives and has become broadly perceived as the antithesis of biblical values."

“Due to the escalation of leftist intolerance and rancor in recent months, we no longer desire to identify our investment approach as being part of the ESG category. In our view, ESG has joined CRT in the list of acronyms worth fighting against,” Robert Netzly, Inspire's CEO, said in the document.

The entire Inspire family of funds has $1.13 billion in assets under management. 

At the end of last month, the Revere Sector Opportunity ETF (RSPY), which launched almost exactly a year ago, increased its expense ratio from 1.05% to 1.11%.  

Finally, two Columbia Threadneedle ETFs will see changes made to their names as of Oct. 14. The Columbia Sustainable International Equity Income ETF (ESGN) will be known as the Columbia International ESG Equity Income ETF after that date, while the Columbia Sustainable U.S. Equity Income ETF (ESGS) will change its name to the Columbia U.S. ESG Equity Income ETF. 

 

Contact Heather Bell at [email protected] 

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