The Skinny on Spinoff Funds

If you want to take the fund route to invest in spinoffs, your choices are limited.

Your choices are few if you want to invest in spinoffs through a fund. The purest play is Guggenheim Spin-Off ETF (symbol CSD), an exchange-traded fund that tracks an index of about 40 companies disgorged within the past 30 months. Fund tracker Morningstar calls the ETF a mid-cap fund, but in truth it invests in companies of all sizes, with a tilt toward smaller firms (58% of assets at last report). Among its best-known holdings are Philip Morris International, Time Warner Cable and AOL.

The ETF has performed impressively since the end of the last bear market. It earned 65% in 2009 and nearly 4% in 2011, a rough year for stocks. But its five-year return—an annualized 0.5% through May 4—still suffers the effects of a disastrous 55% loss in 2008. The annual expense ratio is 0.65%—high for an ETF.

Subscribe to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance

Be a smarter, better informed investor.

Save up to 74%

Sign up for Kiplinger’s Free E-Newsletters

Profit and prosper with the best of expert advice on investing, taxes, retirement, personal finance and more - straight to your e-mail.

Profit and prosper with the best of expert advice - straight to your e-mail.

Sign up

To continue reading this article
please register for free

This is different from signing in to your print subscription

Why am I seeing this? Find out more here

Kathy Kristof
Contributing Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance
Kristof, editor of, is an award-winning financial journalist, who writes regularly for Kiplinger's Personal Finance and CBS MoneyWatch. She's the author of Investing 101, Taming the Tuition Tiger and Kathy Kristof's Complete Book of Dollars and Sense. But perhaps her biggest claim to fame is that she was once a Jeopardy question: Kathy Kristof replaced what famous personal finance columnist, who died in 1991? Answer: Sylvia Porter.