The 2024 etf.com Awards Winners

The ETF industry celebrated another record year at Wednesday’s event.

kent
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Research Lead
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Reviewed by: etf.com Staff
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Edited by: Ron Day


 

The tenth annual etf.com awards Wednesday night recognized the hard work and success of many participants in the $11 trillion global industry.  

Winners were named in 17 categories, from Best ETF to Best New Ticker. The event acknowledged a year of continued growth and innovation for exchange-traded funds, including niche areas like artificial intelligence and covered-call strategies, reflecting the expanding variety of investment options available through ETFs. 

Lifetime Achievement Award 

The Lifetime Achievement Award, which honors one individual for outstanding long-term contributions to ETF investor outcomes, went to VanEck CEO, Jan van Eck. Jan’s vision and foresight led VanEck to become one of the first firms to bring ETFs to the market, when back to 2006 they launched the first gold miner ETF, the VanEck Gold Miners ETF (GDX).  

More recently, Jan became a leader in the race to launch the first spot bitcoin ETFs, including the VanEck Bitcoin Trust (HODL). Today, with 68 ETFs traded on the U.S. markets, VanEck ETFs have total assets under management of $77.8 billion.  

ETF of the Year

Honoring the ETF that has done the most to improve investor opportunities and outcomes in 2023, the ETF of the Year went to the Pacer US Small Cap Cash Cows 100 ETF (CALF).  

The fund’s value-driven approach powered CALF to outperform 98% of its small cap value peers in 2023, logging an impressive 35% gain. 

Best New ETF

Awarded to an ETF that launched in 2023 and exhibited a compelling combination of innovation, outperformance, and low cost while meeting the evolving needs and preferences of investors in the year, the Best New ETF award went to the Roundhill Magnificent Seven ETF (MAGS).  

At the time of its 2023 rebranding and launch, MAGS was the first U.S.-listed ETF to track the Mag 7 stocks. 

ETF Issuer of the Year

Given to the ETF issuer that has done the most to improve investor outcomes through product introductions, product performance, fund management, asset gathering, investor support and innovation in 2023, the ETF Issuer of the Year is Dimensional Fund Advisors.  

Known for its active management and factor-based strategies, DFA began launching ETFs in 2020, but in the short time since the issuer has grown quickly to 38 funds, crossing $100 billion in assets in 2023. DFA also won the ETF Issuer of the Year last year. 

New ETF Issuer of the Year

Awarded to the new ETF issuer that has done the most to improve investor outcomes through product introductions, product performance, fund management, investor support and innovation, the New ETF Issuer of the Year award was won by Morgan Stanley Investment Management.  

Following MSIM’s successful ETF platform launch in 2023, assets have reached $1.75 billion across 14 funds featuring a range of fixed-income, equity and active strategies. 

Best New U.S. Equity ETF

Presented to a fund that launched in 2023 and demonstrated outstanding performance, innovation or impact in the U.S. equity market, the Best New U.S. Equity ETF award went to the Fidelity Disruptive Technology ETF (FDTX).  

Converted from a mutual fund in 2023, FDTX is an actively managed fund that targets innovative businesses with potential for market disruption. 

Best New International/Global ETF

Awarded to a fund launched in 2023 that has demonstrated outstanding performance, innovation or impact in the international or global equity market, the Best New International/Global ETF went to Capital Group Dividend Growers ETF (CGDG).  

CGDG offers investors an actively managed portfolio of global dividend stocks at an expense ratio lower than 80 percent of its peer group. 

Best New U.S. Fixed Income ETF

Given to a fund launched in 2023 that has demonstrated outstanding performance and expertise in managing and investing in U.S. fixed-income assets across various fixed income categories, the Best New U.S. Fixed Income ETF honor was awarded to the Vanguard Short-Term Tax-Exempt ETF (VTES).  

In a year when many of its category peers were seeing outflows, VTES accumulated nearly $400 million in assets. 

Best New International/Global Fixed Income ETF

Awarded to an ETF launched in 2023 that demonstrated outstanding performance or expertise in managing and investing in international fixed-income assets across various fixed-income categories, the Best New International/Global Fixed Income ETF award this year was awarded to the Dimensional Global Credit ETF (DGCB).  

While offering a low-cost, broadly diversified and actively managed portfolio of debt securities, DGCB outperformed its category peers after its 2023 inception. 

Best New Active ETF

Presented to an ETF launched in 2023 that has demonstrated exceptional expertise and success managing investments with an active approach, the Best New Active ETF award went to the AB Disruptors ETF (FWD).  

FWD’s focus on innovative and disruptive technologies like artificial intelligence allowed the new fund to capitalize on the rapid growth trends that defined equity markets in 2023. 

Best New ESG ETF

Awarded to a fund launched in 2023 that demonstrated outstanding performance and innovation in the field of environmental, social and governance investing, the Best New ESG ETF award was won by the Xtrackers MSCI USA Climate Action Equity ETF (USCA).  

USCA accumulated $1.5 billion in assets in its nine months of existence in 2023 while the largest ESG ETFs saw billions in outflows. 

Best New Smart Beta or Factor ETF

Celebrating the innovative use of a quantitative, research-driven approach to attempt to deliver superior long-term risk-adjusted returns, the award for Best New Smart Beta or Factor ETF went to Avantis All Equity Markets Value ETF (AVGV).  

AVGV outperformed its category average in 2023 while providing investors with a low-cost, tax-efficient, and globally diversified portfolio. 

Best Thematic ETF of the Year

Awarded to the most impactful thematic ETF of 2023 that demonstrated the ability to capture specific investment strategies that led to outstanding portfolio outcomes, the Best Thematic ETF of the Year award went to Sprott Uranium Miners ETF (URNM).  

One of the few funds offering exposure to uranium, URNM outperformed 99% of its natural resources category peers and more than doubled the return of the S&P 500 index in 2023. 

Index Provider of the Year

Given to the index provider that has done the most to improve investor outcomes in 2023 through product introductions, product performance, fund management, investor support and innovation, the Index Provider of the Year was awarded to Nasdaq.  

Established in 1971, Nasdaq offers more than 40 years of experience in index research, creation and calculation services. 

New ETF Ticker of the Year

Awarded to a unique and often amusing fund moniker that celebrates a clever, memorable and distinctive stock symbol or ticker from a fund that launched in 2023, the New ETF Ticker of the Year award went to the Themes Cybersecurity ETF (SPAM).  

The ticker is a creative, tongue-in-cheek description for the fund that provides targeted exposure to the large-cap digital security software companies. 

DEI Award

Awarded to a person or company that is playing a crucial role in promoting diversity, equity and inclusion, the DEI Award went to Women in ETFs. This non-profit organization provides valuable resources, networking opportunities, and professional development programs that have helped countless women advance their careers, making a significant impact on the ETF industry. 

ETF Education Provider of the Year

Awarded to a non-media organization that has demonstrated dedication to educating investors and financial professionals, the award for ETF Education Provider of the Year went to The ETF Institute.  

The ETF Institute is the first and only independent organization providing ETF industry professionals and financial advisors with certification, education, and training on exchange-traded funds. 

2024 etf.com Awards Sponsors

Thank you to our presenting sponsors and all our supporting sponsors: Aztlan Equity Management, Bitwise, Capital Group, CNIC Funds, Gregory FCA, Innovator, Invesco, Lukka, MSCI, Panagram, PhillipCapital, REX Shares, Sprott, Vanguard, Vident, and Xtrackers. 

Kent Thune is Research Lead for etf.com, focusing on educational content, thought leadership, content management and search engine optimization. Before joining etf.com, he wrote for numerous investment websites, including Seeking Alpha and Kiplinger. 

 

Kent holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree and is a practicing Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) with 25 years of experience managing investments, guiding clients through some of the worst economic and market environments in U.S. history. He has also served as an adjunct professor, teaching classes for The College of Charleston and Trident Technical College on the topics of retirement planning, business finance, and entrepreneurship. 

 

Kent founded a registered investment advisory firm in 2006 and is based in Hilton Head Island, SC, where he lives with his wife and two sons. Outside of work, Kent enjoys spending time with his family, playing guitar, and working on his philosophy book, which he plans to publish in the coming year.