BMO has added nine new ETFs to its existing line-up bringing the total count to 13. Two of the new ETFs — BMO Emerging Markets Equity (ZEM) and BMO International Equity Hedged to CAD (ZDM) — were already in the works, according to an initial prospectus filed with regulators (See post Exchange-Traded Funds from BMO). Of the remaining seven, four are devoted to fixed income and three to equities:
- BMO Short Federal Bond ETF (Ticker: ZFS; MER: 0.20%) tracks an index of bonds maturing in one to five years and issued or guaranteed by the Government of Canada or its agencies.
- BMO Short Provincial Bond ETF (Ticker: ZPS; MER: 0.25%) tracks an index of bonds maturing in one to five years and issued or guaranteed by the provincial governments or their agencies.
- BMO Short Corporate Bond ETF (Ticker: ZCS; MER: 0.30%) tracks an index of investment-grade corporate bonds maturing in one to five years.
- BMO High Yield US Corporate Bond Hedged to CAD ETF (Ticker: ZHY; MER: 0.65%) tracks the performance of the US high yield corporate bond market and hedges its US dollar exposure.
- BMO S&P/TSX Equal Weight Bank ETF (Ticker: ZEB; MER: 0.55%) tracks the performance of an equal weighted index of the big six banks: Royal Bank (RY), TD Bank (TD), Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS), Bank of Montreal (BMO), CIBC (CM) and National Bank (NA).
- BMO S&P/TSX Equal Weight Oil and Gas ETF (Ticker: ZEO; MER: 0.55%) tracks the performance of an equal weighted index of 13 major oil and gas stocks listed on the TSX.
- BMO S&P/TSX Equal Weight Global Base Metals Hedged to CAD ETF (Ticker: ZMT; MER: 0.55%) tracks the performance of an equal weighted index of 33 global mining equities and hedges its US dollar exposure.
While the High Yield US Corporate Bond ETF appears to be a slightly interesting unique product for an investor looking into junk bonds, it is hard to get excited about the rest of BMO’s new ETFs — iShares CDN Short Bond Index ETF (XSB) already provides exposure to short-term bonds and Claymore has the sector ETFs covered. It is still early days but BMO seems to have trouble gaining traction with its ETFs. The BMO Dow Jones Canada Titans 60 ETF (ZCN), which has gathered the most assets and was introduced in May, has an average volume of 10,000 and wide bid-ask spreads. Its competitor iShares CDN LargeCap 60 (XIU), admittedly, has a huge head start but its volume runs in the millions and the bid-ask spread is tiny.