State Street Global Advisors and Morgan Stanley Capital International entered into a licensing agreement to launch a range of exchange-traded funds in Europe based on MSCI indexes. MSCIs European regional and sector indexes, such as information technology, telecommunication services and health care, are included in the agreement. SSgA spokeswoman Liz Kennedy said the ETFs will be available in the first half of 2001, and she expects that SSgA will launch 10 to 15 European ETFs.
ETFs, which are similar to mutual funds but can be bought or sold during the trading day, are in their infancy in Europe. Merrill Lynch and Barclays Global Investors manage roughly $500 million in ETFs in Europe. In the United States, there are more than 78 ETFs with total assets of $49 billion.