U.S. exchange traded product delistings and closures totaled 49 in 2010, consisting entirely of ETFs (no ETNs). The lifetime tally now stands at 173 (160 ETFs and 13 ETNs). The 49 closures represent a 12.5% drop from 2009 and mark the second straight year the quantity has declined.

Closures affected nine different sponsors, with two making a 100% exit from the market: Old Mutual decided to terminate its GlobalShares line and the NYSE initiated the delisting of Geary ETFs. Sponsors closing a portion of their product lines included Claymore (now named Guggenheim), Direxion, Grail, Javelin/JETS, PowerShares, Rydex, and WisdomTree.

The ETFdeathtoll2010-12-31reason for most closures is the failure to attract enough assets and generate enough fee revenue to be a profitable product for the sponsor. There are of course exceptions, and the abrupt delisting of Claymore/Delta Global Shipping Index ETF (SEA) after the close on April 27 was just such a case. The ETF was successful by nearly any measure you want to choose and had $152 million in assets. Yet it failed to obtain a quorum of shareholders to approve a new management agreement with Guggenheim, forcing it to delist, liquidate, and close. As a testament to its prior success, Guggenheim introduced its replacement in June.

Claymore/Sabrient Stealth ETF (STH) is no longer with us, but it is not part of the official closure statistics for 2010. STH ceased to exist after August 19, but rather than close the fund, Claymore/Guggenheim decided to perform an extreme ETF makeover. The next day it began trading as Wilshire Micro-Cap ETF (WMCR), with a new name, new ticker, new underlying index, and a new objective.

The average age of funds that closed in 2010 was 28.2 months. This is significantly above the 19.6-month average lifespan of all 173 closed products. This suggests that sponsors are becoming more patient with new funds, giving them a longer period in which to prove their viability.

ETF & ETN Closures of 2010

CountTickerNameLast Day
1EEZWisdomTree Earnings Top 100 Fund03/24/2010
2DEBWisdomTree Europe Total Dividend03/24/2010
3DGGWisdomTree International Communications03/24/2010
4DPCWisdomTree International Consumer Discretionary03/24/2010
5DPNWisdomTree International Consumer Staples03/24/2010
6DRFWisdomTree International Financial03/24/2010
7DBRWisdomTree International Health Care03/24/2010
8DDIWisdomTree International Industrial03/24/2010
9DBTWisdomTree International Technology03/24/2010
10USYWisdomTree U.S. Short-Term Govt Income03/24/2010
11SEAClaymore/Delta Global Shipping04/27/2010
12RRYRydex 2x Russell 2000 ETF05/21/2010
13RMMRydex 2x S&P MidCap 400 ETF05/21/2010
14REARydex 2x S&P Select Sector Energy ETF05/21/2010
15RFLRydex 2x S&P Select Sector Financial ETF05/21/2010
16RHMRydex 2x S&P Select Sector Health Care ETF05/21/2010
17RTGRydex 2x S&P Select Sector Technology ETF05/21/2010
18RRZRydex Inverse 2x Russell 2000 ETF05/21/2010
19RMSRydex Inverse 2x S&P MidCap 400 ETF05/21/2010
20RECRydex Inverse 2x Select Sector Energy ETF05/21/2010
21RFNRydex Inverse 2x Select Sector Financial ETF05/21/2010
22RHORydex Inverse 2x Select Sector Health Care ETF05/21/2010
23RTWRydex Inverse 2x Select Sector Technology ETF05/21/2010
24RFFGrail RP Financials ETF08/27/2010
25RPQGrail RP Technology ETF08/27/2010
26EXBClaymore/Beacon Global Exchanges, Brokers & Asset Managers09/10/2010
27ROBClaymore/Robb Report Global Luxury Index ETF09/10/2010
28CROClaymore/Zacks Country Rotation ETF09/10/2010
29IROClaymore/Zacks Dividend Rotation ETF09/10/2010
30OOKGeary OOK, Inc.09/24/2010
31TXFGeary TXF Large Companies ETF09/24/2010
32GSZGlobalShares FTSE All-Cap AsiaPac ex-Japan10/05/2010
33GSOGlobalShares FTSE All-World ex-US Fund10/05/2010
34GSWGlobalShares FTSE All-World Fund10/05/2010
35GSDGlobalShares FTSE Dev Countries ex US10/05/2010
36GSRGlobalShares FTSE Emerging Markets10/05/2010
37JVSJETS DJ Islamic Market International10/19/2010
38TWOZDirexion Daily 2-Year Treasury Bear 3x11/30/2010
39TWOLDirexion Daily 2-Year Treasury Bull 3x11/30/2010
40PTJPowerShares Dynamic Healthcare Services Portfolio12/14/2010
41PTEPowerShares Dynamic Telecommunications & Wireless Portfolio12/14/2010
42PQSCPowerShares FTSE NASDAQ Small Cap Portfolio12/14/2010
43PEFPowerShares FTSE RAFI Europe Portfolio12/14/2010
44PJOPowerShares FTSE RAFI Japan Portfolio12/14/2010
45PBTQPowerShares Global Biotech Portfolio12/14/2010
46PTRPPowerShares Global Progressive Transportation Portfolio12/14/2010
47PQBWPowerShares NASDAQ-100 BuyWrite Portfolio12/14/2010
48PNXQPowerShares NXQ Portfolio12/14/2010
49PZJPowerShares Zacks Small Cap Portfolio12/14/2010

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Disclosure covering writer, editor, publisher, and affiliates: 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.