By Gary Gordon of etfexpert.comIt began with the Thanksgiving Day surprise by Dubai World -- a wealth arm for the emirate of Dubai. Specifically, investors began to question whether or not a sovereign nation might default on its debt obligations. Shortly thereafter, we began to hear the "PIIGS" acronym. The letters represent five countries with hideous balance sheets: Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece and Spain. Greece has been the first to get the stink eye from both the general investing public and its European Union partners. Yet stock investors have wasted little time on reallocating assets, pulling out of the iShares MSCI Spain Index ( EWP) and the iShares MSCI Italy Index ( EWI) faster than a Mercedes racing along the Autobahn.
I do not have exposure here, except through all-world funds like iShares All World ( ACWI) and Vanguard Total World ( VT). I also have one client with a smidgen of iShares MSCI Austria Investable Market Index ( EWO). Yet for the most part, I endeavor to keep the risks of ETF investing low. Nevertheless, for those of you with riskier constitution, those of you with regret about not buying during the worst of the U.S. credit crunch, those of you who believe that European pessimism may be already priced in, a siren calls.