The Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) has announced the listing of the first
currency-based, exchange-traded fund (ETF) on its market.
The new instrument, which was issued by specialist ETF provider BetaShares, will give domestic market participants to obtain exposure to the US dollar by tracking it against the Australian dollar.
The ASX now offers a total of 46 ETF and exchange-traded commodities on its market supplied by a range of issuers including specialist ETF Securities, buy-side firms BlackRock, Russell Investments, Vanguard Investments, custodian bank State Street and Perth Mint. In 2010, the market capitalisation of ETFs on the ASX grew by 45% to A$5.1 billion.
“Australian ETFs cover domestic and international equities, property, commodities – and now currency – and provide Australian investors with greater opportunity to internationalise their portfolios,” commented Richard Murphy, general manager, equity markets at the ASX. “Exchange traded funds have been one of the most successful growth products for both retail and institutional investors around the world over the previous decade. In Australia, ASX is committed to developing the ETF sector to provide investors with access to a broad range of investable asset classes.”
The ASX is currently the subject of a takeover bid by the Singapore Exchange. The deal, which would create the fifth largest exchange group, is expected to be finalised later this year.