Investing money in well performing world economies, foreign markets and companies can be good strategy; especially when investments in local markets and companies are not offering good returns. More over many investors want to diversify and/or want to internationalize their portfolio. International ETFs are for excellent investment options for these investors.
International Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) are exchanged traded funds which track foreign stock exchanges. They are traded on local stock exchanges and are traded just like stocks – through a brokerage firm. International ETF firm buy and hold stocks traded in the exchange(s) they are tracking to make a small replica of that stock exchange. They then issues shares of the ETF through local exchanges like NYSE, Nasdaq and AMEX. The price of ETF shares goes up with rise in tracking foreign stock market and goes down when market drops.
International ETFs holds many advantages.
- They let investors to invest their money in growing markets.
- They help investors to invest in emerging markets which are otherwise hard to access or are costly.
- They hold all the benefits of ETFs like no tracking error, low expense ratio, increased liquidity, and tax benefits.
- They are easy-to-trade instruments; they can be intraday traded and short-traded. Unlike mutual funds, which disclose value once a day, one can get real-time value of ETF shares and total ETF portfolio value.
- They suit almost every trading and investing styles; they can be day traded, swing traded or long-term traded.
There are now a range of international ETFs to choose from. One can choose ETFs for a single stock market, a single country, a region, a currency specific or a sector specific. Some most popular international ETFs include iShares from Barclays, InvescoPowerShares international ETFs and State Street International SPRDs. The number and types of international ETFs are also growing and you can also find some leveraged and smart ETFs among them; which can offer above average return for higher risk taken.
Before investing in international ETFs, it is necessary to analysis of the fund portfolio. Funds which track illiquid and small foreign exchanges and sectors are not much suitable for investors who want to minimize their portfolio risks. The investor should also have an understanding of the fundamentals and growing scope of the region, country, market and companies concerned.