A Fund for Betting on Infrastructure

The SPDR S&P Kensho Intelligent Structures ETF invests in both industrials firms and new technologies for clean energy.

construction worker standing in front of steel beams
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Obstacles remain, but a $1 trillion infrastructure bill moved closer to becoming a law when the Senate approved it in early August after weeks of wrangling. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act would grant $550 billion in federal funds for the country's roads, bridges, rail, transit, water and other structures.

Clean energy and new technologies are also a key focus. More than $70 billion would fund upgrades for the country's power infrastructure and boost renewable-energy use. The bill also sets $65 billion aside to build a broadband network so more Americans have access to reliable high-speed internet service; another $7.5 billion would set up a national system of electric-vehicle chargers.

Infrastructure fund SPDR S&P Kensho Intelligent Structures (SIMS (opens in new tab)) invests about half of its assets in shares of industrials firms. But it also focuses on the kinds of technology that the infrastructure bill is big on.

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ChargePoint (CHPT (opens in new tab)), a top-20 holding in the fund, builds and operates electric-vehicle charging stations. Qorvo (QRVO (opens in new tab)), another top holding, makes radio-frequency systems that drive wireless and broadband communications. And Bloom Energy (BE (opens in new tab)) converts natural gas into electricity in a combustion-free process that is more environmentally friendly than conventional gas-fired power generation.

The infrastructure bill could stall, of course. But the recovering economy alone is a boon for funds with hefty industrials exposure. Just note that this fund's three-year record is high not only on return but also on volatility.

Infrastructure ETFs

(Image credit: As of August 6, 2021. SOURCES: Morningstar, Principal, Yahoo Finance.)
Nellie S. Huang
Senior Associate Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Nellie joined Kiplinger in August 2011 after a seven-year stint in Hong Kong. There, she worked for the Wall Street Journal Asia, where as lifestyle editor, she launched and edited Scene Asia, an online guide to food, wine, entertainment and the arts in Asia. Prior to that, she was an editor at Weekend Journal, the Friday lifestyle section of the Wall Street Journal Asia. Kiplinger isn't Nellie's first foray into personal finance: She has also worked at SmartMoney (rising from fact-checker to senior writer), and she was a senior editor at Money.