ETF Trends
ETF Trends

We speak about interesting size options activity in the second largest “Emerging Markets Equity” focused ETF in the U.S. listed marketplace, EEM (iShares MSCI Emerging Markets, Expense Ratio 0.67%) involving upside calls.

With about $30 billion in assets under management, it falls only behind VWO (Vanguard Emerging Markets, Expense Ratio 0.15%) which has an impressive $49 billion in AUM. Today however we
focus on a product that debuted nearly four years ago amid the “Low Volatility” frenzy that hit the ETF landscape around that time, EEMV (iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Minimum Volatility, Expense Ratio 0.25%).

Clearly borrowing its symbol from the more established and well-known EEM, EEMV tracks what is known as the MSCI Emerging Markets Minimum Volatility Index, and according to fund literature “seeks to track the investment results of an index composed of emerging market equities that, in the aggregate, have lower volatility characteristics relative to the broader emerging equity markets.”

As expected, we see only 258 individual holdings in this fund as compared to the 845 contained in EEM, and the fund is rather well diversified with the top holding (Taiwan Semiconductor
Manufacturing) only weighing in at 1.51% of the portfolio.

China has the highest individual country weighting in the index (>20%), followed by Taiwan (17.14%), South Korea (11.26%), and Malaysia (7.98%), to provide some perspective on how the top end of the portfolio fleshes out. Since its October 2011 debut, EEMV has attracted >$760 million in new assets via creation activity, giving it an asset base of north of $2.6 billion currently.

EEMV is not the sole entry in the “Emerging Markets Low Volatility” sub-category, as PowerShares entered the fray in early 2012 with EELV (PowerShares S&P Emerging Markets Low Volatility Portfolio, Expense Ratio 0.29%), which is considerably smaller in terms of AUM size with about $238 million currently. Similarly, EGShares launched HILO (EGShares EM Quality Dividend ETF, Expense Ratio 0.85%) back in the summer of 2011 as well, which has since been re-classified and renamed to its current state, and this fund has about $23.6 million in assets under management presently.

iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Minimum Volatility ETF

For more information on Street One ETF market commentary and ETF trade execution/liquidity services, contact Paul Weisbruch at

Street One Financial is an educational/research firm utilizing the Broker Dealer services of Precision Securities, a FINRA registered Broker/Dealer.