WBI Merging Several ETFs

Eight funds will be affected by the changes.

Reviewed by: Heather Bell
Edited by: Heather Bell

In an unusual move for the ETF space—but a common one for mutual funds—WBI is merging four of its ETFs into four of its other ETFs on or around Oct. 24. The change seems to be designed to turn the acquiring funds—which are all large cap ETFs—into total market ETFs, as the four funds that are being merged into them are all mid- and small-cap focused.

The affected funds are as follows:

The four funds to be acquired are among the smallest in the WBI family of ETFs, while the acquiring funds are among the largest. All of the affected ETFs are actively managed.

Changes like this are not entirely unprecedented. In 2015, the $15.5 billion Invesco S&P 500 Equal Weight ETF (RSP)—back when it was still a Guggenheim fund—absorbed the much smaller Guggenheim Russell 1000 Equal Weight ETF (EWRI). And the First Trust FTSE EPRA/NAREIT Developed Markets Real Estate Index Fund (FFR) is expected to acquire the First Trust Heitman Global Prime Real Estate ETF (PRME) later this year.

Contact Heather Bell at [email protected]

Heather Bell is a former managing editor of etf.com. She has also held editorial positions at Dow Jones Indexes and Lehman Brothers. Bell is a graduate of Dartmouth college and resides in the Denver area with her two dogs.