The Competition
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Just as Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak weren’t the only two geeks in a garage working on a computer in the 1970s, the AMEX wasn’t the only exchange looking to get a market basket instrument listed. The late 1980s saw multiple attempts to create something like an ETF, including SuperShares, Equity Index Participation Shares, Cash Index Participation Shares and the Toronto 35 Index Participation Units.  Ultimately, SPY gets – and deserves – the lion’s share of the credit as the first ETF. But by no means was AMEX alone in the race; they were just the winners. This episode looks at the race, the players involved and why their products became historical footnotes. 
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SPY wasn’t just a hit product, it was an inspiration for an entire industry to take off. But it didn’t happen overnight. It took about 10 years for the ETF structure to be utilized for other asset classes and strategies, which today seem normal but at the time were revolutionary.On this...
Published 01/03/19
Published 01/03/19
SPDR S&P 500, or SPY, is the world’s largest ETF today with about $240 billion in assets, but it wasn’t much to look at when it debuted in 1993. Some days it was on “volume life support,” trading as little as 18,000 shares; there was even talk of pulling the plug. Yet true believers,...
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