GlobalShares FTSE Developed Countries ex US Fund (GSD) began trading on Thursday (2/11/2010). This ETF is designed to offer exposure to 23 developed countries, including Canada, Japan, the United Kingdom, France and Germany, without US stocks. Its underlying index, the FTSE Developed ex US Index, includes over 1,400 stocks.
US investors can now choose from more than two dozen ETFs for exposure to developed markets outside the US. Unless Old Mutual has something up their sleeve to attract assets for this fund, it will likely become an “also ran” in the ETF asset-gathering race.
The official press release paints a more optimistic picture. “After the successful launch of our GlobalShares Emerging Markets Fund in December, we are excited to introduce this new ETF and will be rolling out an additional three within the coming weeks,” said Tendai Musikavanhu, CEO of Old Mutual Global Index Trackers.
Successful is not the word I would use to describe the launch of GSR. It came out with a zero-expense-ratio publicity stunt back in December that appears to have failed in its mission. The fund has yet to see a day with volume of 10,000 shares and has many zero volume days. If GSR were truly successful, Old Mutual would not have needed to pull yet another stunt of announcing a 5:1 split.
As for GSD, expenses will be capped at 0.35% for the first two years. If you are interested in learning more, additional data can be found in the GSD Fact Sheet.