Building killer ETF portfolios (podcast)

tracking future stock prices with social media

On Tradestreaming Radio, we’re interviewing lots of innovative entrepreneurs, investors, and researchers all trying to make investors better at what they do.  Check out our archives.  Subscribe on iTunes.

In this episode of our podcast, we interview Craig Greene, CFA, founder of ETFreplay.  A banker/securities analyst-turned entrepreneur, Greene has built a cutting-edge tool to analyze exchange traded funds and create backtested profitable strategies for investors.

He’s part of a growing trend of seasoned financial professionals joining the entrepreneurial ranks and building really useful, valuable tools to assist the rest of us.

ETFreplay is part screener, part backtester, part strategy and portfolio builder. It takes the best from custom-made institutional-grade research products and expands upon them.

(I posted 3 Best Websites for ETFs a few weeks ago and left the new site out — to my chagrin.  I took a virtual lashing from many smart analysts, investors and financial bloggers.)

The credo behind ETFreplay is that investors still aren’t coming close to utilizing ETFs in their portfolios and that there is a lot of ground to be made up in terms of rules-based portfolio composition, data/information about ETFs, and tools to analyze them.

Listen to the full program

More resources

Best ETF websites

In response to my 3 best websites for ETFs post, Abnormal Returns’ Tadas Viskanta wrote his own list of A-level ETF resources (admittedly longer than 3…)

It’s a great conversation and I’m speaking to more and more entrepreneurs building and developing tools to help investors analyze ETFs.

Here’s a combined list — feel free to add/rate/comment.

3 best websites for ETFs

Since ETF Connect shut down :-(, my life has been the worse for it.  There are a lot of sites with ETF information but none as good.  I think the rest of the pack is catching up.

  • All ETF: All World ETFs is tech-shop Dorsey Wright‘s recent offering in the ETF space.  I think this is probably the best of the freely-available websites for investors to understand ETF composition, locate specific strategies, and general info.  I like the ETF X-Ray a lot. It seems best geared for more advanced users because you do need to know what you’re doing to get the value here.
  • Seeking Alpha: The site was one of the first movers.  CEO David Jackson composed his Seeking Alpha ETF Investment Guide (a must-read for investors new to ETFs) in 2006 and ETF content has been a mainstay of the site for all its existence.  There is an ETF Selector which is good (it’s hand written, not database driven) but as new products are launched, the site does better with its long-form content for analysis.  Once you drill down on an ETF you’re interested in, the site does a good job providing you with content and a table of competitive products (See IVE for example).
  • Morningstar: Morningstar’s best ETF content is typically behind a paywall.  But there are some nifty tools available at Morningsstar’s website that investors should use when researching the ETFs. Investors can build their own screens and there is a great list of upcoming launches of new ETFs.

*Most of the ETF provider sites like State Street’s SPDR and Blackrock’s iShares are quite good for their own funds.  The problem here is that for the most part, they don’t provide data/comparisons to funds from other providers.

**Yahoo Finance is surprisingly poor in their ETF coverage.  The site is geared for searching for ETFs by size, volume and fund family.  I don’t know of an investor who looks for ETFs like that.  I want to find the best small cap China ETF or short-term bond ETF.  Strategy is super important in helping investors identify actionable ideas in ETF land.