What we find particularly interesting while watching the development of these funds, involves the rationale behind the funds. We understand those rationales to include:
- General demand for ETFs, according to The Wall Street Journal, "there were 914 listed ETFs at the end of June up 21% from a year ago. . .Since 2007, ETFs have raked in $480 b in net cash inflows, bringing total assets to $780b."
- Trend in partnering among companies looking to create markets for "obscure" materials for which there is rising demand.
- Creating physical inventories via financially traded products to supply a growing market.
- And as a result of three above—creating the unintended (or intended) consequence of raising the price for some of these rare earth metals (thus resulting in more attractive mining economics)—which is a good thing if you believe the demand for these metals will increase over time.