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As we learn from several questions such as "Why will SPY terminate in 2118?" and "Do all ETFs have an expiry date similar to SPY?", SPY is structured as a Unit Investment Trust (UIT) and thus has a limited life span.

Could it be restructured in a way that changes this fact, or is the only option to replace it?

If replacing is the only option, could the replacement ETF be able to get SPY as its symbol?

(I have no real need to ask, just out of curiosity.)

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SPY has about $300 Billion in assets under management (AUM) and thousands of investors. Those investors are not going to be forced to "cash out" when the fund "expires" in 98 years. No one knows the exact mechanics of how it will happen, but I am confident there will be some legal agreement or structure by which all investments will get transferred to a "new" SPY with the same total value.

And re-using the ticker is certainly possible. It happens all the time with stock splits and other corporate actions where the original stock gets a new symbol and the "new" stock is assigned the original symbol.

State Street has 98 years to figure it out. Call them in about 95 years and see what they plan to do to ensure the continuity of the fund.

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    Thanks, I will do so. Please remind me of it as my memory won't be as good as today. – glglgl Oct 6 at 12:39
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    {{note to self: email glglgl in 2115...}} – D Stanley Oct 6 at 12:40
  • BTW, I didn't mean that to be condescending - my point was that it's so far away that the legal structures and mechanisms for maintaining continuity probably haven't been developed yet. – D Stanley Oct 6 at 12:41

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