Evolution of Indexing
I also had a one-on-one sitdown with the man who designed the Claymore Patent ETF, which will trade under the ticker OTP. I don't have an opinion yet, but studying it is not a waste. The Patent ETF methodology values companies by assessing the financial worth of a company's patent portfolio, believing that the better patents a company owns, the better the stock will do. The back-test obviously supports the thesis. But the fact that I needed 10 minutes of face time with the designer of the index to understand it may explain why the fund may not be popular.
I had a very quick chat with someone from the Chicago Board Options Exchange. I asked if anyone was interested in making an ETF out of its buy-write indices. There is interest, but that's about all that the representative could say. Unfortunately, the CBOE booth was not getting a lot of traffic, so I'm not sure there will be enough interest to make investible products around these, but I hope so.
I stopped by the FTSE booth and found one interesting item coming: the FTSE Macquarie Global Infrastructure Index, which will be an ETF, possibly as soon as next quarter. I have written about and disclosed owning the Macquarie Trust (MIC), which is not an indexed product. Macquarie has a bunch of infrastructure indices, including Australia, Europe and Japan. I'm a big believer in this niche that Macquarie has created, and while I like MIC for now, at about a 3% weight, I would swap into something else from it if I felt it was superior.
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