Last Day For CRBA and CRBI

December 22, 2011 by  
Filed under Commentary, ETF Closings

Jefferies | TR/J CRB Global Agriculture Equity Index Fund (CRBA) and Jefferies | TR/J CRB Global Industrial Metals Equity Index Fund (CRBI) were launched in October 2009 and will be delisted after today (December 22, 2011).  Investors should sell their shares immediately to avoid any potential pitfalls associated with the closure and liquidation of the funds.  Be sure to use a limit order on these two ETF Deathwatch members, because the bid/ask spread is wider than 2% today.

From the press release: “Thursday, December 22, 2011, is scheduled to be the last day of trading for the shares of the Funds on NYSE Arca.  Beginning immediately through December 27, 2011, the Funds will be in the process of closing down and liquidating their portfolios.  This process will result in the Funds not tracking their underlying indexes and their cash holdings increasing, which may not be consistent with the Funds’ investment objectives and strategies.”

The press release tries to entice shareholders into staying around for the liquidation saying they will not incur a brokerage fee (about $10) if they do that.  However, shareholders may potentially lose far more than $10 by sticking around.

I’d be concerned about what closure fees will be charged to remaining shareholders.  The 0.65% expense ratios are not capped, and the following note is on the website:

†The Fund’s Advisory Agreement provides that the Investment Adviser will pay all expenses of the Fund, except for interest expenses, distribution fees or expenses, brokerage expenses, taxes and extraordinary expenses such as litigation and other expenses not incurred in the ordinary course of the Fund’s business.

ALPS and Jefferies could easily argue that shutting down the fund is not in the “ordinary course” of business and stick shareholders with the bill.

Disclosure covering writer, editor, and publisher:  No positions in any of the securities mentioned.  No positions in any of the companies or ETF sponsors mentioned.  No income, revenue, or other compensation (either directly or indirectly) received from, or on behalf of, any of the companies or ETF sponsors mentioned.

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