Money managers are coming closer to launching non-transparent actively managed exchange traded funds, with the Securities and Exchange Commission looking over requests from both providers and market exchanges.

The SEC reportedly told providers that it will begin processing applications for nontransparent ETF offerings once exchanges give the okay to list products, writes Robert Goldsborough, fund analyst at Morningstar.

Earlier this year, the New York Stock Exchange’s part company asked the SEC for permission to list non-transparent active ETFs, and Nasdaq’s parent company followed suit a few weeks later, seeking to list and trade Eaton Vance’s proposed products. [NYSE Pushes to List Nontransparent ETFs]

Now, we play the waiting game, with the SEC’s division of markets and trading scrutinizing the requests.

“Given the recent flurry of activity, it’s clear that the providers are taking this process very seriously,” Goldsborough said. “As a result, we would expect to see some ETFs placed into registration almost immediately after the SEC gives the go-ahead to the proposed nontransparent structures.”

Currently, the SEC requires all ETFs, active and passive, to disclose holdings on a daily basis, which has dissuaded some active managers from launching an ETF and revealing their secret sauce to potential front runners.

Consequently, most actively managed ETFs invest in fixed-income securities because it is harder for most investors to mimic the portfolios of over-the-counter bond securities.

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