ETFs that mimic hedge-fund strategies are on the cutting edge but so far this innovative portion of the business hasn’t attracted much in the way of assets.
There are several complex ETFs that employ so-called market-neutral or long-short strategies.
One interesting example is AdvisorShares Rockledge SectorSAM ETF (NYSEArca: SSAM).
The fund is relatively small with only $2.5 million in assets under management. Some investors may be turned off by the 1.5% expense ratio. That’s high for an ETF but the fund is actively managed and is more complex than plain-vanilla index-tracking portfolios.
The ETF’s subadvisor Rockledge Advisors has been around since 2004. [AdvisorShares Launches Active ETF]
Rockledge uses a quantitative strategy that goes long the sectors it sees as most attractive, and shorts the sectors with the weakest outlooks. The underlying holdings are comprised of the sector SPDR ETFs managed by State Street Global Advisors.
“It’s a hedge fund strategy in a retail product,” said Alex Gurvich, managing partner and portfolio manager at Rockledge, in a recent telephone interview. [AdvisorShares to List Long-Short ETF]
“Alternative investing is important because institutional investors are looking for non-correlated assets,” he added.