BlackRock launches thematic iShares ETF suite to capture global ‘megatrends’

BlackRock announces the launch of four thematic exchange traded funds (ETFs) capturing investment opportunities created by the global trends towards ageing population, healthcare innovation, robotics and automation, and digitalisation.

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Four new funds offer investors access to global themes: ageing population, healthcare innovation, digitalisation, and automatics and robotics

BlackRock announces the launch of four thematic exchange traded funds (ETFs) capturing investment opportunities created by the global trends towards ageing population, healthcare innovation, robotics and automation, and digitalisation.

The themes stem from widely acknowledged megatrends, which are global economic, social, technological and demographic shifts that can have a major influence on everyday lives and are expected to become more important over the coming decades.

In order to provide investors with exposure to these themes, BlackRock has collaborated with iSTOXX® and FactSet to launch thematic indices. They are rules-based, systematic strategy indices built using proprietary databases. The underlying index for each fund employs a unique revenue-focused methodology to ensure the most relevant companies for a given theme are consistently maintained. To avoid concentration risk, each index has a minimum of 80 constituents.

The new iShares thematic ETFs

Tom Fekete, Head of Product for iShares EMEA at BlackRock, commented: “Megatrends are affecting the way we live and work. These ETFs look to capture the opportunities created by long-term structural trends, by identifying the companies most aligned to them. They are a new set of tools that investors can use to express their views on these trends, in a transparent, global and cost-efficient way.”

Matteo Andreetto, chief executive officer, STOXX Limited, said: “Research shows that the disruptive megatrends captured by the iSTOXX® FactSet Thematic Indices will play a major role in the transition towards a digital, highly technological world that seeks to find alternatives to current healthcare approaches and effective solutions related to an increasing life expectancy.”

Jeremy Zhou, head of indexing at FactSet, commented: “Identifying specific theme-related industries in a systematic and precise manner has always been a challenge. By leveraging the FactSet Revere Business Industry Classification System (FactSet RBICS), with its more than 1400 granular industry levels to assign company exposures, STOXX and BlackRock have selected an ideal solution for delivering such precision into the thematic portfolio construction process.”

The funds are physically-replicating, meaning they buy the securities of the index, and each has a total expense ratio of 0.40%.

Next Finance , September 19

Article also available in : English EN | français FR

P.S.

1 Euromonitor: ‘The Food Industry is Missing a Billion Dollar Trick When it Comes to the Aging Population’, August 2015

2 World Bank, December 2015

3 McKinsey: ‘Four Fundamentals of Workplace Automation’, Nov 2015

4 Citi Global Perspectives, Digital Disruption: How FinTechis Forcing Banking to a Tipping Point, March 2016

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