Exchange-traded funds offer a convenient way to invest in sectors or niches that interest you. If you expect to see big global investments in infrastructure, particularly in emerging markets, in the coming years, the PowerShares Emerging Markets Infrastructure ETF
ETFs often sport lower expense ratios than their mutual fund cousins. The PowerShares ETF's expense ratio -- its annual fee -- is on the steep side for an ETF, at 0.75%, but that's still lower than the average actively traded mutual fund.
This ETF has performed well, but it's also very young, with just two years on the books. It jumped about 90% in 2009, and beat the market in 2010. As with most investments, we can't expect outstanding performances in every quarter or year -- what matters is the long haul, and the future. Investors with conviction need to wait for their holdings to deliver.
With a relatively low turnover rate of 36%, this fund isn't frantically and frequently rejiggering its holdings, as many funds do. That'll give its holdings a better chance to perform.
What's in it?
The fund is nicely balanced between large-caps and mid-caps, and holds about 90% of its assets in industrial materials, as you'd expect from an infrastructure-focused ETF. Several of this ETF's components made strong contributions to its performance over the past year. Caterpillar
The PowerShares ETF isn't the only ETF that focuses on global infrastructure growth. But its balance over many nations and companies makes it particularly intriguing these days.
The big picture
A well-chosen ETF can grant you instant diversification across an industry -- and make investing in and profiting from the sector that much easier.
ETFs can help you find the way to better investing results. To find some great ETF investing ideas, take a look at The Motley Fool's special free report, " 3 ETFs Set to Soar During the Recovery ."
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Longtime Fool contributor Selena Maranjian does not own shares of any companies mentioned in this article. ABB is a Motley Fool Global Gains pick. Try any of our investing newsletter services free for 30 days. The Motley Fool is Fools writing for Fools.