iShares MINT-Like Bond Fund Nears Takeoff

August 22, 2012

iShares’ answer to Pimco’s MINT appears ready for launch.


iShares, the world’s biggest ETF company, filed regulatory paperwork to market four new bond funds, including one updated registration statement suggesting its actively managed short-term clone of the Pimco Enhanced Short Maturity Strategy ETF (NYSEArca: MINT) is near launch.

The company said the iShares Ultrashort Duration Bond Fund would be listed on Kansas City, Mo.-based BATS, the third-biggest U.S. stock exchange, under the ticker symbol “NEAR.” It also said NEAR would come with an annual expense ratio of 0.25 percent, or 10 basis points less than Pimco’s MINT, an ETF with $1.89 billion in assets.

It said in the filing that NEAR would hold dollar-denominated investment-grade corporate and government debt with a MINT-like effective duration of up to one year. Updating registration statements with such specific information often suggests a fund’s launch is nearing, if not imminent.

The company put a total of 11 ETFs into registration this week, including seven equity funds, and in sum, all the filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission were a strong echo of the feverish pace with which it put new funds into registration earlier this year.

Indeed, the San Francisco-based company appears to be enhancing its stature as the one-stop shop for investors seeking most types of plain-vanilla funds registered under the Investment Company Act of 1940.

The other three bond funds apart from NEAR that it put into registration—all of them indexed strategies—are as follows:


The paperwork didn’t stipulate proposed expense ratios or tickers for the three funds or the exchange where they might have their primary listings.



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