Global Long/Short & Active Foreign ETFs Planned

September 11, 2009

A pair of new AdvisorShares ETFs are being proposed to increase the number of active funds on the market.



AdvisorShares Investments is setting plans to launch two new active exchange-traded funds, neither of which is likely to be confused with more quantitative-based portfolios.

In a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission dated Sept. 7, the first AdvisorShares qualitative ETF listed would focus on stocks from developed and emerging markets outside the U.S.

No fees and expenses were listed for the WCM / BNY Mellon Focused Growth ADR ETF. It would trade on the New York Stock Exchange with a proposed ticker of AADR.

The portfolio manager would be WCM Investment Management. The Laguna Beach, Calif.-based firm uses a fundamental strategy and takes an all-cap approach. The ETF would be run by a four-member team from WCM.

In the past, that group of managers has implemented similar strategies in separate accounts using an investment horizon of three-plus years with a relatively low-turnover rate.

WCM is known in institutional circles for its long-term approach that tries to identify companies with strong management teams and dominant in their industries.

AADR would aim to beat the returns of two benchmarks – the widely followed MSCI EAFE index of developed foreign stocks and a special index created by BNY Mellon.

WCM’s separate accounts using a similar strategy typically have around 25 different names, most of which have ADRs on major U.S. exchanges.

The other ETF would take a more aggressive tack. The Legacy Long/Short ETF would also trade on the NYSE; it proposes to use the ticker of HDGE.

Its portfolio manager would be Suzanne Hamilton, who is the founder and president of Legacy Asset Management Inc. She also manages the Legacy Capital hedge fund.

Hamilton is known for her all-asset approach, including alternatives such as commodities. Under her guidance, HDGE would likely take a global long/short strategy – definitely not to be confused with a market neutral type of style.

The manager is known for emphasizing long-term capital appreciation with an emphasis on absolute returns, risk management and low volatility through differing market conditions

Hamilton is known to trade a bit more actively than a typical active portfolio manager, however. Her style has been to smooth returns over longer periods, and, unlike many absolute return managers, to accept some downside losses if she thinks that the strategy can turn those into outsized returns later.

You can read the filing for both proposed ETFs here.



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