With renewed headlines surfacing from the Middle East in regards to ISIS, or ISIL depending on what your preference is, it makes sense to readdress the ETF landscape as it concerns the region once more.
The largest ETF here is EIS (iShares MSCI Israel, Expense Ratio 0.62%), which is of course out of the firefight with operations occurring in Iraq, Syria, as well as to some degree in Saudi Arabia and Yemen at this point.
QAT (iShares MSCI Qatar, Expense Ratio 0.61%) is a newer ETF to the fray, having debuted in late April of 2014 but it has attracted a respectable $52 million in assets under management up until this point in time. In terms of fund sizes, GAF (SPDR S&P Middle East & Africa, Expense Ratio 0.49%, $50 million in AUM), ISRA (Market Vectors Israel, Expense Ratio 0.59%, $47 million in AUM), UAE (iShares MSCI UAE, Expense Ratio 0.61%, $38 million in AUM), GULF (WT Middle East Dividend, Expense Ratio 0.88%, $33 million in AUM), and MES (Market Vectors Gulf States, Expense Ratio 0.98%, $17 million in AUM) round out the list of offerings here.
GAF however we must point out, has more than a 75% index weighting to South Africa, which is clearly not related to the Middle East terror situation in any way.
There is also one very new entrant to the space, and one that represents a country where we now know that ISIS/ISIL has a presence, PAK (Global X MSCI Pakistan, Expense Ratio 0.88%), but this fund remains small with seed capital of about $3.8 million representing its AUM at this time.
Additionally, although not a Middle Eastern state technically nor geographically, EGPT (Market Vectors Egypt, Expense Ratio 0.98%, $53 milliion in AUM) should be in focus as well especially since there have been factions related to ISIS/ISIL mentioned within Egypt and neighboring Libya, as well as related clashes and airstrikes in recent months.
WisdomTree Middle East Dividend Fund
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