One sign you’ve made it? Your product does – or pointedly doesn’t – appear in a comic strip. Scott Adams, the creator of “Dilbert,” won’t have exchange traded funds (ETFs) appearing in the comic strip anytime soon. But that’s for good reason.

Mr. Adams says that Dogbert won’t be investing in ETFs anytime soon, if ever.

Dogbert, the scheming canine, prefers mutual funds and started his own in the 1990s. Adams says that Dogbert is the character he uses when he wants to portray something as a scam. So, the ETF industry can take it as a compliment that Dogbert simply isn’t interested. [Step Aside Mutual Funds; ETFs Coming Through.]

But Adams sure is.

Karen Damato for The Wall Street Journal reports that Adams, at 53, gets the bulk of his stock exposure through two ETFs:

  • SPDR S&P 500 (NYSEArca: SPY)
  • iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index (NYSEArca: EEM)

As an admirer of ETFs over actively managed mutual funds, the above ETFs represent about 20% and 5%, respectively, of his personal portfolio. Over time, Adams may increase each to perhaps one-third of the total, as some of the individual municipal bonds that constitute the bulk of his portfolio mature.

Adams has made his distaste for the mutual fund industry clear in the comic strip.

In one, Dogbert appears in a TV infomercial, telling viewers that “studies have shown that monkeys can pick stocks better than most professionals.” That’s why, he explains, the Dogbert Mutual Fund employs only monkeys. “Yes, our fees are high, but I don’t apologize for hiring the best.” [ETFs: No Longer Just a Mutual Fund Supplement.]

    For more stories about ETFs, visit our ETF 101 category.

    Tisha Guerrero contributed to this article.

    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.