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May 21, 2021

ETFs: a case for “look-through” data in risk management and beyond

For more than 25 years, exchange-traded funds (ETFs) have transformed the global investment landscape. Born out of US equity market efficiency assumptions and computer advancements, these low-cost investment vehicles are found today in many institutional portfolios. Investors use ETF products well beyond original US equity bounds. These liquid beta instruments seek to replicate performances of international equity indices, commodity indicators and selected fixed-income universes. Considering the continuous growth in assets allocated to ETFs—ESG-tilted ones in particular—this blog looks at some analytics consequences on institutional investors’ asset allocation and risk management processes.

Apr 19, 2021

A-tisket, a-tasket, a custom ETF basket—passive, active & semi-transparent

In September 2019, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approved Rule 6c-11 under the 1940 Act, which will allow most exchange-traded funds (ETFs) to operate without the expense and delay of obtaining an exemptive order. The new rule provides greater flexibility to all issuers looking to launch new products filed as open-end funds in a streamlined approval process with a quicker time to come to the market. The new rule applies to both index-based and actively managed transparent ETFs. This rule cannot be applied to leveraged/inverse ETFs, unit investment trusts, master-feeder funds or share class ETFs.  

Feb 11, 2021

Innovation – Providing certainty in an uncertain world

We have written extensively about the importance of asset managers’ ability to provide products that are unique and differentiated. This is likely to be especially true as we begin 2021, a year that will probably continue to be characterized by a high degree of uncertainty, which may weigh heavily on investors and their advisors. 

Jul 13, 2020

Evolving & ever-changing ETFs – an AP’s perspective: the in-flows and out-flows of ETFs with Dave Nadig

Despite COVID-19 and unrest around the globe, this year has finally seen semi-transparent active ETF launches from American Century’s ActiveShares to Fidelity’s Active ETFs. Although there is uncertainty of what each day, week or month will look like in the new normal, one thing is for sure, the interest for gaining more knowledge about semi-transparent active ETFs is growing. Following the SS&C ALPS webinar on the subject, we sat down with ETF Trends’, Director of Research, Dave Nadig, to get an authorized participants’ (AP) perspective around the flows for these new models.

Jul 7, 2020

Evolving & ever-changing ETFs—considerations from an asset manager’s point of view

Asset managers are fortunate to have a number of fund structures to choose from to launch their various strategies, either within active or passive constructs. As ETFs have gained in popularity with investors for their low cost, tax-efficient, transparent and tradeable structures, asset managers have increasingly concentrated on the ETF wrapper for their new product launches. While the basic blocking and tackling of ETF management is very similar to other fund structures, managing a product that simultaneously trades on a listed exchange presents many new challenges for asset managers that may require additional expertise.

Apr 9, 2020

Shielded Alpha℠: One-on-One with Blue Tractor Group

Simon Goulet and Terence Norman, co-founders of Blue Tractor Group, recently discussed with SS&C ALPS the challenges and opportunities of the Shielded Alpha℠ ETF wrapper. Blue Tractor’s Shield Alpha℠ was one of four semi-transparent models approved by the SEC late in 2019.

Apr 7, 2020

ETFs: a critical tool for managing millennials’ wealth

Assets invested in the global exchange-traded fund (ETF) industry hit an estimated $6.4 trillion at the end of January 2020, which represents massive growth from less than $100 billion in 2000. Wealth advisors and managers are part of the reason why ETFs have grown in popularity—the funds offer low cost, tax-efficiency, asset diversification and scalability. ETFs also resonate with millennials because of their ease of use and inexpensiveness—and wealth managers need to pay attention.

Feb 24, 2020

The ETF “ANTs” go marching one by one: active non- and semi-transparent models

“If you’re a mutual fund warehouse, you’re trying to figure out how to grow your business without giving away your secret sauce.” ~Nichole M. Kramer*, Wall Street Journal, February 8, 2019

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