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 reason 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

Count Ticker Name Last Day
1 EEZ WisdomTree Earnings Top 100 Fund 03/24/2010
2 DEB WisdomTree Europe Total Dividend 03/24/2010
3 DGG WisdomTree International Communications 03/24/2010
4 DPC WisdomTree International Consumer Discretionary 03/24/2010
5 DPN WisdomTree International Consumer Staples 03/24/2010
6 DRF WisdomTree International Financial 03/24/2010
7 DBR WisdomTree International Health Care 03/24/2010
8 DDI WisdomTree International Industrial 03/24/2010
9 DBT WisdomTree International Technology 03/24/2010
10 USY WisdomTree U.S. Short-Term Govt Income 03/24/2010
11 SEA Claymore/Delta Global Shipping 04/27/2010
12 RRY Rydex 2x Russell 2000 ETF 05/21/2010
13 RMM Rydex 2x S&P; MidCap 400 ETF 05/21/2010
14 REA Rydex 2x S&P; Select Sector Energy ETF 05/21/2010
15 RFL Rydex 2x S&P; Select Sector Financial ETF 05/21/2010
16 RHM Rydex 2x S&P; Select Sector Health Care ETF 05/21/2010
17 RTG Rydex 2x S&P; Select Sector Technology ETF 05/21/2010
18 RRZ Rydex Inverse 2x Russell 2000 ETF 05/21/2010
19 RMS Rydex Inverse 2x S&P; MidCap 400 ETF 05/21/2010
20 REC Rydex Inverse 2x Select Sector Energy ETF 05/21/2010
21 RFN Rydex Inverse 2x Select Sector Financial ETF 05/21/2010
22 RHO Rydex Inverse 2x Select Sector Health Care ETF 05/21/2010
23 RTW Rydex Inverse 2x Select Sector Technology ETF 05/21/2010
24 RFF Grail RP Financials ETF 08/27/2010
25 RPQ Grail RP Technology ETF 08/27/2010
26 EXB Claymore/Beacon Global Exchanges, Brokers & Asset Managers 09/10/2010
27 ROB Claymore/Robb Report Global Luxury Index ETF 09/10/2010
28 CRO Claymore/Zacks Country Rotation ETF 09/10/2010
29 IRO Claymore/Zacks Dividend Rotation ETF 09/10/2010
30 OOK Geary OOK, Inc. 09/24/2010
31 TXF Geary TXF Large Companies ETF 09/24/2010
32 GSZ GlobalShares FTSE All-Cap AsiaPac ex-Japan 10/05/2010
33 GSO GlobalShares FTSE All-World ex-US Fund 10/05/2010
34 GSW GlobalShares FTSE All-World Fund 10/05/2010
35 GSD GlobalShares FTSE Dev Countries ex US 10/05/2010
36 GSR GlobalShares FTSE Emerging Markets 10/05/2010
37 JVS JETS DJ Islamic Market International 10/19/2010
38 TWOZ Direxion Daily 2-Year Treasury Bear 3x 11/30/2010
39 TWOL Direxion Daily 2-Year Treasury Bull 3x 11/30/2010
40 PTJ PowerShares Dynamic Healthcare Services Portfolio 12/14/2010
41 PTE PowerShares Dynamic Telecommunications & Wireless Portfolio 12/14/2010
42 PQSC PowerShares FTSE NASDAQ Small Cap Portfolio 12/14/2010
43 PEF PowerShares FTSE RAFI Europe Portfolio 12/14/2010
44 PJO PowerShares FTSE RAFI Japan Portfolio 12/14/2010
45 PBTQ PowerShares Global Biotech Portfolio 12/14/2010
46 PTRP PowerShares Global Progressive Transportation Portfolio 12/14/2010
47 PQBW PowerShares NASDAQ-100 BuyWrite Portfolio 12/14/2010
48 PNXQ PowerShares NXQ Portfolio 12/14/2010
49 PZJ PowerShares Zacks Small Cap Portfolio 12/14/2010

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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.