Seeking Alpha
Profile| Send Message|
( followers)  
The table below ranks all ETFs and other non-listed custodial facilities who publish regular figures on their holdings (source: Sharelynx). Balances are by issuer, rather than stock exchange their individual products are listed on.
Rank
ETF/Custodial Facility
Gold Ounces as at
July 2009
Gold Ounces as at
July 2010
% Increase
% Market Share
1st
Gold Bullion Securities
40,465,445
47,238,687
16.7%
5.3%
2nd
Zurcher Kantonalbank
4,738,397
5,612,194
18.4%
0.6%
3rd
ETF Securities
2,716,282
4,938,090
81.8%
0.6%
4th
iShares
2,323,677
2,921,785
25.7%
0.3%
5th
Julius Baer
1,849,375
2,607,096
41.0%
0.3%
6th
Central Fund/Trust of Canada
1,571,037
2,108,910
34.2%
0.2%
7th
Xetra Gold
1,019,540
1,607,743
57.7%
0.2%
8th
Bullion Vault
583,705
666,055
14.1%
0.1%
9th
Sprott
na
582,417
na
0.1%
10th
GoldMoney
425,168
498,567
17.3%
0.1%
11th
Claymore
366,000
356,664
-2.6%
0.0%
12th
Benchmark (India)
68,674
162,427
136.5%
0.0%
13th
Bullion Management Group
92,544
86,448
-6.6%
0.0%
14th
UTI (India)
46,136
69,607
50.9%
0.0%
15th
e-Gold
68,208
60,256
-11.7%
0.0%
16th
Reliance Captial (India)
38,935
52,760
35.5%
0.0%
17th
GoldIST (Turkey)
46,780
46,780
0.0%
0.0%
18th
Mitsubishi UFJ (Japan)
na
27,869
na
0.0%
19th
Kotak (India)
11,060
22,345
102.0%
0.0%
20th
SBI (India)
23,920
19,837
-17.1%
0.0%
21st
Religare (India)
na
5,273
na
0.0%
22nd
Quantum (India)
1,961
3,472
77.0%
0.0%
Gold "Products" Sub-total
56,456,844
69,695,282
23.4%
7.8%
COMEX
9,140,646
11,085,141
21.3%
1.2%
TOCOM
180,464
129,472
-28.3%
0.0%
Other Privately Held
818,565,798
813,860,802
-0.6%
91.0%
Total Privately Held
884,343,752
894,770,697
1.2%
100.0%
The World Gold Council sponsored Gold Bullion Securities dominates with 68% market share of known or visible products. However, when considered in light of estimated worldwide private/institutional gold holdings of 895 million ounces(1), its real market share of investor gold holdings is 5.3%. Not too shabby considering how secretive gold investors can be.
The market share percentages also indicate that caution should be taken prognosticating from ETF and futures movements as they only account in total for 10% of the market. I suppose analyst and commentator obsession with them stems from their visibility in what is an otherwise opaque market.
The standout performer over the past year has to be ETF Securities, with an increase of 82%. At this rate they have the number two spot in their sights. However they may encounter strong competition from iShares, who on June 24 split their shares down to 1/100th of an ounce (a $12 per share price compared to $120 for their competitors) and on July 1 reduced their management fee from 0.40% to 0.25%,(2) leaving Gold Bullion Securities at 0.4% and ETF Securities at 0.39%.
This has iShares’ ounces up 6.95% from June 24 to August 4, compared to Gold Bullion Securities down 2.61%, ETF Securities down 2.67% and all Issuers’ ounces down 0.97% over the same time period. At this time iShares appear to be getting a positive response from their “newly refined” product – could a price war be on the cards?
Sprott’s closed end fund made a big entry straight to 9th place, reflecting its strong support from the goldbug community, who do not trust the “bankster” ETFs. My reading of the commentators is that the trusted products seem to be Central Fund/Trust of Canada, Bullion Vault, Sprott, GoldMoney, Bullion Management Group and probably e-Gold. If we split the leader board on that basis we do get an interesting result.
Gold Ounces as at
July 2009
Gold Ounces as at
July 2010
% Increase
Untrustworthy
53,716,182
65,692,629
22.3%
Trustworthy
2,740,662
4,002,653
46.0%

Benchmark appears to be winning the Indian ETF war, with a 136% increase and a balance more than double their nearest competitor. The Indian gold ETF market is unique with seven products listed. Certainly it is a larger gold market than the US (with three products fighting it out) but with only 335,000 ounces across all of them, it seems to confirm that India remains in love with physical rather than paper.

Disclosure: Long ASX:ZAUWBA

Source: ETF Securities Star Performer on Gold ETF Leader Board