Yanni's ETF: Greece ETF Not Bad In First Trading Day

Thank goodness there's finally an ETF for Greek music star
Yanni
. Kidding aside, Thursday marked the debut of the first Greece-specific ETF, the Global X FTSE Greece 20 ETF
GREK
. Looking at the Yahoo Finance data, GREK's first day of trading wasn't all that bad. The ETF opened at $14.80 and closed at $14.76 on volume of 4,250 on a day when international and emerging markets ETFs were under siege. With European policymakers meeting in Brussels to discuss options for ridding the Euro Zone of its sovereign debt woes, it would have been fair to expect GREK to be under pressure, but overall, the debut was solid, maybe even a tad boring and that's a bad thing when it comes to Greece these days. With an expense ratio of 0.69%, the Global X FTSE Greece 20 ETF is home to the 20 largest Athens-listed stocks. National Bank of Greece
NBG
, Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling and the Greek Organization of Football Prognostics are GREK's top-three holdings, combing for roughly 39% of the ETF's weight. “Global X Funds strives to facilitate access to foreign markets. Whether bullish or bearish, this new ETF allows investors to take a viewpoint on the recent news coming out of Greece,” said Bruno del Ama, chief executive officer of Global X Funds, in a statement. As Global X notes, citing Bloomberg, since reaching a peak market capitalization of over $220 billion in 2007, the market cap of the Athens Stock Exchange has fallen nearly 90% to under $28 billion as of November 2011. So perhaps there's value in Greek stocks. Financials account for 35% of GREK's sector weight while consumer discretionary (18.4%) and consumer staples (12.66%) are the only other sectors receiving double-digit allocations. Industrials, telecom, energy, utilities and materials are also represented in the new ETF. The utility of GREK may lie in the fact that patient investors could be willing to bet things can only get better for Greek equities, but those investors may find stock-picking among Athens-listed fare too daunting. GREK certainly solves that problem. Bull case: Simpy put, investors start believing there are legitimate value opportunities with Greek stocks. Bear case: Simply put, things do get worse for Greek stocks, perhaps on the back of a sovereign debt default or departure from the euro.

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