South Korea got an upgrade today that could translate into an upgrade in the performance of its exchange traded fund (ETF).

According to London-based FTSE, it’s no longer an emerging market and has been elevated to that of developed status, reports Murray Coleman for Index Universe.

The move was actually expected in 200, though. Two other major index providers, Dow Jones & Co. and Wilshire Associates already classify South Korea as a developed market.

So , what does this mean, exactly? Some estimates move a country from emerging to developed categories in the FTSE index with a shift of $10-$25 billion by passive index managers worldwide. FTSE claims that more than $2 trillion is tied to its benchmarks by index funds tracking their benchmarks.

Israel was moved to developed status in 2007, and Taiwan is pending for a status upgrade. iShares MSCI Emerging Markets (EEM) devotes 12.3% to South Korea. Vanguard Emerging Markets (VWO) holds 12.1% the country. The country’s elevated status in the eyes of another index provider could help out the iShares MSCI South Korea (EWY), which is down 32.1% year-to-date.

Another oft-mentioned candidate for an upgrade is Taiwan, so look out.

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.