If you were wondering whether the World Cup actually delivered any meaningful benefit to the host country and exchange traded funds (ETFs) that track it, the proof that it does is here.
The last World Cup helped South Africa’s economy generate $527 million and brought in more than 309,000 visitors, reports Christy Wyatt for Conference & Incentive Travel. [Africa ETFs: A Continent With Potential.]
Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk stated that “the World Cup was never about the hosting of a tournament, but rather about building a legacy for our country and our continent – a legacy in terms of infrastructure development, economic growth, skills development, job creation, nation building and brand awareness.”
In the last two years, iShares MSCI South Africa Index (NYSEArca: EZA) has gained 93.2%; a good chunk of that likely came from increased economic activity as a result of the World Cup.
This could mean good things for ETFs that hold Qatar and Russia, such as SPDR S&P Russia (NYSEArca: RBL), WisdomTree Middle East Dividend ETF (NYSEArca: GULF), of which Qatar is 24.2% and Van Eck Market Vectors Gulf States ETF (NYSEArca: MES) of which Qatar is 24.1%.