Liquid Alternative investments have emerged over the past decade as one of the fastest-growing areas within asset management. As pensions, endowments, foundations and other institutional investors have long benefited from Alternative Investments within their portfolios, Liquid Alternatives enable investors to have access to alternative investment strategies in fund structures that provide daily liquidity, full transparency, low investment minimums and other key attributes for investors. DailyAlts is your source for the most up-to-the-minute news, commentary and analysis on the global market for Liquid Alternatives.
Unigestion, the Geneva-headquartered, independent, asset management company specializing in risk-managed equity portfolios and alternatives, has launched a global macro fund within its liquid alternatives cross-asset range.
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American retail sales plunged to a record low in April. It is a reflection of the dire straits that the retail industry is in due to the coronavirus pandemic. US retail sales fell by 16.4% in April, following up on an 8.3% decline in March. This is the largest two-month plunge on record. The virus scare may be the last straw on the camel’s back, as far as America’s already struggling retail industry is concerned. To put salt to injury, online sales grew 8.4% in April.
Lyxor International Asset Management has launched a clutch of five thematic ETFs that seek to capture megatrends unfolding globally, particularly after the COVID-19 crisis. Investors looking for gains beyond the pale of the conventional sector and market-cap-weighted funds could consider investing in these funds. These megatrend ETFs span themes such as the growth of the digital economy and disruptive technology, urban change with future mobility and smart cities, and the consumption habits of millennials.
The Wall Street Journal revealed Tuesday that Uber (NYSE: UBER) is pursuing a takeover of food delivery service Grubhub (NYSE: GRUB) in an all-stock deal. In fact, talks started earlier this year, and according to Bloomberg, the deal could be consummated as early as this month. If successful, Uber’s play for Grubhub would be a gamechanger for the food delivery sector.
“Fallen angel” corporate bonds that have taken a rating hit may be supported by the corporate bond ETF purchase program envisaged in the Secondary Market Corporate Credit Facility (SMCCF). The facility is scheduled to kick in today. ETFs holding these fallen angels, whose ratings fell from investment grade to speculative or junk grade due to COVID, maybe the earlier targets in the program. The Fed could buy up to $750 billion under the SMCCF, as well as the Primary Market Corporate Credit Facility (PMCCF).
Lockdowns and social distancing ushered in a new paradigm for digital payments, and PayPal will benefit hugely.
PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL) has been on a high after it declared its Q1 numbers and President and CEO Dan Schuman revealed on the earnings call that April turned out to be PayPal’s strongest month since its IPO. A look at ETFs that hold PayPal.
The Global X Cannabis ETF (NASDAQ: POTX) has bounced back smartly from its mid-March, corona-induced price swoon to $6.50. In a high-volume rebound, the ETF rose to $10.64, and thereafter it has moved sideways. However, it is currently ruling above the 50-day moving average, and increasingly it looks like it will soon resume its rally. Though the ETF was punished along with the rest of the market, things may have improved for cannabis fundamentally.
Shariah is Islamic religious law that prohibits the earning of interest income. Therefore, the usual Western debt instruments such as bonds are not workable for Muslim investors. The Sukuk is an innovative structure that was introduced in 2000 in Malaysia. The SP Funds Dow Jones Global Sukuk ETF (NYSE: SPSK), is the first to offer access to Sukuk investments, a new asset class, in an ETF.
Members of the House Municipal Finance Caucus have written to the Fed to buy municipal bonds of terms up to 30 years. The move comes as states’ finances are badly hit by the coronavirus and the municipal bond market is still struggling after it shut down to new issues in March. Separately, in a previously announced move intended to support credit markets, the Fed is gearing up to commence, as early as this month, two emergency corporate lending programs. These would buy up to $750 billion in debt and ETFs.
Investors who were bottom-fishing the airlines’ sector via the U.S. Global Jets ETF (NYSEARCA: JETS) are likely to view today’s (Monday) trading with some trepidation. Buffett, one of the world’s most respected and emulated investors, said over the weekend that he’d had it with airlines. Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK.A) now has zero exposure to the pandemic-hit U.S. airline sector.
Somebody had to ride the trend. On April 21, ETF distributor Pacer Financial filed with the SEC to launch its Pacer BioThreat ETF, with the highly expressive ticker of VIRS. (FINANCIAL ADVISOR)
On April 24, ETF Managers Trust filed with the SEC for its ETFMG BIO ETF.
These are ‘biothreat’ themed ETFs are obviously trying to ride the trend of the coronavirus pandemic.
Liquid Alternatives: “It Should Go To Zero Faster Than It Did Last Time” – Jim Cramer on Crude Oil and USO
On Monday, the United States Oil Fund (NYSEARCA: USO) fell nearly 15% to close at $2.19. Weighing on the ETF was the latest announcement from USCF, the fund’s administrator, that the fund will close out its positions in the June WTIC futures contract, and roll them over to longer-dated contracts.
BNY Mellon has a 30-year track record in indexation and industry leadership in ETF sub-advisory services. Its index team currently manages $340bn for institutional and retail clients globally. As of April 16, it had $1.8 trillion in AUM. On Friday it rolled out five new ETFs listed on the NYSEARCA exchange.
Are stock ETFs a source of risk in the current environment? How did they perform under the weight of enormous flows, both in and out? These and other issues figured in a chat on “The Compound” between ETF Trends CIO and Director of Research Dave Nadig and Barry Ritholtz, Chairman and CIO of Ritholtz Wealth Management.
Most thought the ETF invested in spot oil, while it bought oil futures and rolled them over.
And therein lies the difference, or for a lot of chagrined retail oil investors, a hole in their pockets. The United States Oil Fund (NYSEARCA: USO) took positions in front-month oil futures and rolled them over every month. It did not, as retail investors mostly assumed, invest in the spot oil market.
The USO Fund LP has halted trading. Yesterday, the fund was largely responsible for pushing WTI May crude prices into negative territory. Crude prices effectively collapsed by 300%.
The United States Oil Fund LP (NYSEARCA: USO) said in a regulatory filing today that it would suspend buying of crude. This action suspends USO Authorized Purchasers from buying new creating new baskets. The WTI May contract expires today.
The price of WTIC crude crashed to as low as minus $37.63 per barrel on Monday. The seemingly absurd pricing was triggered by the expiry of May’s future contracts scheduled for Tuesday. A trader would have to receive deliveries on any May contracts remaining open, and store the oil at exorbitant rates.
As this is written Tesla, Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA), is trading at $761.20, up $6.96, or 0.96%. If shares of the electric vehicle maker end today (Monday) in the green it will be the eleventh straight day of gains for the stock. The stock has risen phoenix-like from a low of $454.47 touched on April 2. That’s a gain of over 67% in those eleven trading sessions. And sure, ETFs holding the stock would benefit from the massive surge in its price.
In a record-breaking March quarter, gold ETF holdings and assets added US$ 3 billion in net inflows, the largest quarterly gain in history, according to the World Gold Council. Over the past year, gold ETFs have boosted their AUM by 57%, the highest annual increase since the GFC. One beneficiary from this craze for gold was the Invesco Physical Gold ETC.
Rating agency Moody’s is stepping up its assessment of companies’ performance on ESG counts. An analysis of Moody’s (NYSE: MCO) private sector rating actions last year revealed that ESG risks were cited as material in a third of the cases.
With employment at historic lows, and most of America’s Main Street shut down, Trump’s $1 trillion infrastructure plan could deliver a dual advantage. It would give Americans work, and shore up the country’s infrastructure. A Bloomberg article suggests spending through the states, focused on roads and environmental infrastructure. The ETFs discussed below could be beneficiaries of this spending blitz.
American Century’s actively managed, non-transparent ETFs started trading earlier this month. American Century Focused Dynamic Growth ETF (BATS: FDG) and American Century Focused Large-Cap Value ETF (BATS: FLV) are not required to disclose their holdings daily. In this respect, they are more like mutual funds, and less like most ETFs – which disclose daily. Should mutual funds worry?
Fund issuer Direxion is jumping onto the remote working bandwagon.
It has filed with the SEC for the Direxion Work From Home ETF. The ETF will track the Solactive Remote Work Index. The Index comprises 40 U.S. listed securities and ADRs that have significant exposure to “work from home” needs. These are remote communications, cybersecurity, project and document management, and cloud technologies. Furthermore, the new ETF will trade under the ticker WFH.