Blue Point News

Limitations and Consequences of ETFs

January 5, 2015 | By Niall O’Malley

Before delving into the limitations and unintended consequences of Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs), it is important to define an ETF. Where did these investment vehicles originate? How significant are ETFs to investors? The first Exchange Traded Fund was launched in January 1993 by State Street Global Advisors under the ticker symbol ‘SPY’. The ETF was designed to track the value of the S&P 500 Index. It is quoted at 1/10 of the value of the S&P 500. The ETF was marketed as a “spider”, shorthand for Standard & Poor’s Depository Receipt (SPDR), traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

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