EC Guide To Guru ETF Investing

While the U.S. stock market hit multiple highs yet again early this quarter, investors lost hope on bouts of volatility and heightened uncertainty. A slew of weak economic data, soft corporate earnings, and the reemergence of the Greek default drama softened investors’ sentiment, leading to concerns over a slowdown in the U.S. economy.

Further, the Fed downgraded its outlook on the labor market and economy in its latest policy meeting, suggesting that the bank will wait for some more months before the first interest rates rise since 2006. Last week, it also warned that “equity market valuations are quite high at present." (Read: Don't "Sell in May and Go Away": Follow 3 ETF Strategies)

In such a backdrop, investors are seeking some smart stock-selection techniques much like the gurus to alleviate the risks in the market. After all, these ambitious and iconic investors have proven their supremacy by making huge money in any market environment.

While matching investing styles of stock market gurus like Warren Buffett, Bill Ackman, Daniel Loeb, Cark Icahn or David Einhorn is a daunting task, the advent of guru style ETFs have made it simpler. These seem the best way for investors to tap some strategies of their favorite gurus.

Guru ETFs: Pros and Cons

These funds replicate the investing styles and predictions of market gurus, providing a solid and well-diversified portfolio, which seek to outperform the broader market. This is because the funds avoid some pitfalls of tracking one ‘master’ of the investing world, heavily concentrated on a particular style or market segment.

Further, some gurus might take positions in swaps, futures or more exotic securities that general investors may not be able to grasp. For them we suggest the basket approach. Though the products charge a somewhat higher fee than the other ETFs with less exposure to this world, the cost is just a fraction of what investors pay for a ‘true’ hedge fund exposure (read: Follow Stock Market Gurus with These ETFs).

However, the strategy has one big drawback. Since the large investment firms or hedge funds which manage ETFs need to disclose their holdings and portfolio moves on a quarterly basis, the holdings’ update could often be stale as managers can move in and out of a security before the regular update.

Below, we have highlighted some of the most popular ETFs, which look to track market experts, and their investment picks. All these differ in one way or the other and could make for an exciting choice in this lucrative corner of the ETF market. These ETFs either try to clone stock investments of gurus or imitate their investing styles:

Global X Top Guru Holdings Index ETF ((GURU - ETF report))

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Carol W 4 years ago Contributor's comment

If IBLN's top holdings are AMGN AAPL and ACT, why do I need it? Talk about obvious pickings! I am already long these stocks.

.if I saw a listing for a tiny biotech tucked away in some little village in Ireland I never heard of, then I would be inclined to throw some money at the ETF. I would expect billionaires don't invest like you and me.Throw me a bone. Something I would not have been privvy to in my little world. Ag play in the Phillipines? uranium miner in Tibet?

Carol W 4 years ago Contributor's comment

you still won't know what it's holding for the same reason..I guess you're trusting the gurus to do your heavy lifting..last I checked that never works...gun to head these new etfs are better than second guessing Ackman four months too late.cheers. good info as usual, it's "Killa" stuff! cheers Carol