Palladium Shares Wins Most Innovative ETF Award

The ETFS Physical Palladium Shares (PALL) and ETF provider Global X Funds tied to win the award for the Americas’ Most Innovative ETF of 2010 at the 7th Annual Global ETF Awards banquet at New York’s Grand Hyatt Hotel recently.

Launched by ETF Securities in January 2010 with the ETFS Physical Platinum Shares (PPLT), the palladium and platinum funds were the first ETFs in the U.S. to provide investors with a cheap and convenient way to invest in these precious metals. The Palladium Shares track the price of palladium and are backed by palladium bullion plates and ingots and stored in vaults approved by the London Platinum Palladium Market. Because the Palladium ETF holds physical bullion it has minimal counterparty or credit risks and charges an expense ratio of 0.6%. Voters did not specify which Global X ETF deseved the award.

The Benchmark Hang Seng BeES was named the most innovative ETF in Asia. Europe’s most innovative ETFs came from db x-trackers and Source. The actual funds weren’t named.

Hosted and organized by exchangetradedfunds.com, the Global ETF Awards are like the Academy Awards for the ETF industry because only industry insiders are allowed to vote. Essentially, these industry insiders are asked grade their competitors to pick which denizens of ETF Land have done the best job over the past year.

The Most Innovative Exchange-Traded Product, not an ETF, in the Americas went to Barclays ETN + S&P Veqtor ETN (VQT). This exchange-traded note tracks the S&P 500 Dynamic Veqtor Total Return Index. It offers a strategy of “broad equity market exposure with an implied volatility hedge by dynamically allocating its notional investments among three components: equity, volatility and cash. The equity component is represented by the S&P 500 Total Return Index and the volatility component is represented by the S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures Index.” ETF Securities won in Europe for an unnamed product.

Once again, SPDRs was named the Most Recognized ETF Brand in the Americas beating out iShares, Vanguard and PowerShares. IShares shared the title with db x-trackers in Europe, while Asia’s best known brand is China 50 ETF.

“Every year this becomes more meaningful because the industry becomes more competitive every year,” said the SPDR representative.

S&P Indices won Most Innovative ETF Index Provider in the Americas, with STOXX the European winner and China Securities Index taking Asia’s prize.

IndexUniverse.com, where I am a contributing writer, was named the Americas Most Informative ETF Website, with etf.db.com and hkex.com.hk the winners in Europe and Asia, respectively.

Deborah Fuhr of BlackRock held onto her crown as the leading ETF analyst winning both Most Widely Utilized ETF Statistical Research and Most Widely Utilized Analytical Research in Europe. The latter award she was tied with Deutsche Bank, which also took both prizes in the Americas and Asia’s analytical award. Daiwa Asset Management won Asia’s statistical research award.

Other prize winners:

Best ETF Market Maker: Knight (Americas), FlowTraders (Europe), UBS Securities (Asia)

Most Proactive Exchange: NYSE Euronext (Americas), Deutsche Borse (Europe), Shanghai Stock Exchange (Asia).

Most Proactive Exchange for ETF Derivatives: International Securities Exchange (Americas), Eurex (Europe), Hong Kong Stock Exchange (Asia).

Best Service Provider: BNY Mellon (Americas), Bank of Ireland (Europe), SSgA (Asia).

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