As mundane as it sounds, Greece continues to be in daily headlines in the context of the Eurozone region, so we have our
eyes on Greece via GREK (Global X FTSE Greece 20, Expense Ratio 0.65%) again, which has just melted away this week
(had a $17 handle just four trading sessions ago, to trade in the low $14s today).
In fact, it may be beneficial to create a watch-list once more for all of the “PIIGS,” since they will no doubt be in the spotlight for at least the next 45-60 days.
The acronym itself over the years has become much maligned, but the way we see it is just an acronym after all, and we suppose one could transpose the letters in any variety really (SGIIP, GIIPS, IGISP, etc.).
These are clearly not as catchy as “PIIGS” so it is no wonder that it stuck. In 2014 it is nice to have ETF trackers to watch and trade for all of these individual Eurozone countries: Portugal (PGAL, Global X FTSE Portugal 20, Expense Ratio 0.61%), Italy (EWI, iShares MSCI Italy Capped, Expense Ratio 0.50%), Ireland (EIRL, iShares MSCI Ireland Capped, Expense Ratio 0.48%), Greek (GREK), and Spain (EWP, iShares MSCI Spain Capped, Expense Ratio 0.51%).
In spite of the volatility thus far in December throughout these countries GREK has seen modest asset outflows (-$2 million), with an asset base of approximately $116 million currently.
Likewise PGAL has seen about $1 million leave the fund (asset base is about $29 million). PGAL is currently trading at its lowest levels since inception in late 2013 for example.
EWI is just a bit more seasoned, having debuted in 1996 and with a lofty $942 million asset base at the moment. EWI has held up a bit better, but it is still in danger of trading near its October lows (it got as low as $13.56 briefly on an intraday basis).