Making ETFs on a Commodore 64

Making ETFs on a Commodore 64

If you are as old as us, you will remember with fondness the C64, one of the original home computers and according to Guinness World Records the highest-selling single computer model of all time.

But what has that to do with ETFs? Well, not much, but it reminds us a bit about what the industry is doing in terms of innovation, specifically around ETF share classes of mutual funds which has been getting a lot of attention of late.

Whilst technological innovation explodes all around us, the best idea we can come up with is bolt on an ETF share class to a mutual fund.

Is that progressive or simply opportunistic?


Fund Launches and Updates





First Trust has bolstered its range of target outcome exchange traded funds with the launch of a US equity-focused vehicle.

The First Trust Vest US Equity Moderate Buffer Ucits ETF, which has been listed on the London Stock Exchange, is an actively managed product that seeks to provide investors with returns, before fees and expenses, that match the price return of the S&P 500 index up to a predetermined upside cap.


21Shares has expanded its line-up of digital asset investment products with the world’s first ETP providing directly backed exposure to TIA, the native token of the Celestia platform. The 21Shares Celestia Staking ETP (ATIA FP; ATIA NA) has been listed on Euronext Paris and Euronext Amsterdam in euros and US dollars, respectively.


BNP Paribas Asset Management has introduced its first actively managed ETFs with the launch of two socially responsible fixed income funds. The BNP Paribas Easy Sustainable EUR Corporate Bond ETF and BNP Paribas Easy Sustainable EUR Government Bond ETF come with a TER 0.25% and 0.18% and are listed on Deutsche Boerse and Borsa Italiana.




Valkyrie has launched a leveraged bitcoin futures ETF. The Valkyrie Bitcoin Futures Leveraged Strategy ETF (BTFX) offers twice the daily return of the S&P CME Bitcoin Futures Index Excess Return. The fund has an expense ratio of 1.85% and is listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange.

Angel Oak Capital Advisors converted two of its existing mutual funds into ETFs. The Angel Oak Mortgage-Backed Securities ETF (NYSE Arca: MBS) and the Angel Oak High Yield Opportunities ETF (NYSE Arca: AOHY) are both actively managed and target the fixed income asset class. MBS charges a TER of 0.49% and AOHY has a TER of 0.55%.

Mason Capital debuted the actively managed Fundamentals First ETF (KNOW) on the Cboe BZX Exchange. The fund invests in domestic and foreign companies via equities and fixed income securities, limiting the weight of any single security to 5% of the portfolio. The fund has an expense ratio of 1.10%.

First Trust has added to its growing defined outcome ETF lineup with the launch of the FT Vest U.S. Small Cap Moderate Buffer ETF – February (SFEB) and the FT Vest U.S. Equity Enhance & Moderate Buffer ETF – February (XFEB).

Both funds use flexible exchange options to provide buffered exposure to the price performance of their reference ETFs. SFEB has an expense ratio of 0.90%, and XFEB charges 0.85%. Both funds are listed on the Cboe BZX Exchange.




Australia’s index funds sector is poised to achieve A$1 trillion (US$652 billion) in assets under management within the next two years, making up about a quarter of the broader domestic funds industry, a new report finds.

Locally domiciled index funds, which include both unlisted mutual funds and exchange-traded funds, had almost A$670 billion in funds under management as of 2023, according to Rainmaker Information’s Institutional Roundup Report. This reflects around 23% of the whole Australian fund management industry FUM at present, up from just 18% a decade ago, the report shows.


A podcast series focused on exploring the career journey of industry leaders within the ETF and Digital Assets space. Get to hear their personal story and be inspired. This week we speak to Alex Gladkow, CEO of GHCO. Listen what he has to say clicking HERE.




SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) became the first ETF in history to hit a half-trillion dollars in assets under management on Thursday.

  • Assets invested in the global ETFs industry reached a new milestone of $11.73 Tn at the end of January beating the previous record of $11.63 Tn set at the end of December 2023.
  • Net inflows of $136.80 Bn during January.
  • January net inflows of $136.80 Bn are the highest on record, while the second highest recorded January net inflows was of $105.59 Bn in 2018 and the third highest was $85.28 Bn in 2021.
  • 56th month of consecutive net inflows.




Seems not everyone is in agreements with the SEC approval of Bitcoin with its European cousin the ECB calling it “ the naked emperor’s new clothes”.

In a blog post the ECB write “Bitcoin has failed on the promise to be a global decentralised digital currency and is still hardly used for legitimate transfers. The latest approval of an ETF doesn’t change the fact that Bitcoin is not suitable as means of payment or as an investment, that the fair value of Bitcoin is still zero”. Ouch.


Did you know: South Korea accounts for between 10% and 20% of global crypto trading volumes, despite having just 0.6% of the world’s population, with younger generations in the country flocking to the excitement of investing in volatile cryptocurrencies, according to Tiger Research Reports.


Grayscale is open to M&A-related opportunities, firm’s CEO says. When asked during an interview with CNBC whether Grayscale would still be an independent company in two years, Grayscale CEO Michael Sonnenshein said his firm is open to considering deals. “Our eyes and ears are open, and sometimes people are approaching us about strategically working together”.


Movers and Shakers


Ryan O’Connor has been appointed as CEO of Global X. He joins from Goldman Sachs Asset Management

HSBC have hired Marta Bretones Benavides to lead ETF & Index Sales for Iberia. She joins from Santander Asset management

JP Morgan Securities Services Head of Sales, Josh Jacobs has left the company. His next move is yet to be announced so watch this space.


From behind the Desk


In a recent poll, we asked what value people get from attending events. See the results below:

Access to great content – 12%

Opportunity to connect with clients – 41%

Opportunity to network with peers – 47%

Event organisers typically try and put a lot of work into offering high quality content, but perhaps they are wasting their time and should just simply open the bar earlier.

On that note, don’t forget registration for ETF Stream’s ETF Ecosystem Unwrapped 2024 is now open. Click here to register.


About us


Blackwater is a leading global ETF Consulting, Recruiting, PR and Content Creation firm.

We are specialists in helping companies find the best strategy to enter and navigate the ETF marketplace, enhance their reputation, craft innovative and engaging targeted ETF content and source the very best of talent across the ecosystem.

If you would like to discuss any of the above then please reach out at