BlackRock expands ETF range as inflows hit record US$140bn high

US fund management giant BlackRock has expanded its equity income exchange traded fund (ETF) range with the launch of two new iShares funds.

The additional funds brings BlackRock’s range of iShares Dividend ETFs to 14, which is the largest range from one firm available to European investors.

BlackRock said in a statement announcing the launch that the two new funds aim to provide “exposure to companies that exhibit strong income generation potential, relative to the broader market”.

The underlying indices of the funds screen to include only companies that have a 30% higher dividend yield than the parent universe. Securities are then screened according to their earnings quality and to ensure that the dividends they pay are both sustainable and persistent over time.

The two new funds complement the existing iShares MSCI USA Quality Dividend UCITS ETF (QDIV), Blackrock said.

Record inflows

BlackRock, which originally launched the first ETF in 1971, has seen more inflows into its exchange traded fund arm in the first six months of 2017, than it did across the whole of 2016.

The world’s largest asset manager has seen a record inflow of US$140bn, so far this year, already exceeding the company’s annual record of US$138bn, that gathered over the whole of last year, according to preliminary data from ETFGI, a London-based consultancy.

The iShares Quality Dividend range consists of:

FundExposure
*New* iShares MSCI World Quality Dividend UCITS ETF (WQDV)World developed high quality companies that exhibit strong income generation potential relative to the broader global market
*New* iShares MSCI Europe Quality Dividend UCITS ETF (EQDV)European high quality companies that exhibit stronger income generation potential than the broader European market.
iShares MSCI USA Quality Dividend UCITS ETF (QDIV)US high quality companies that exhibit the strongest income generation potential than the broader US market.

Manuela Sperandeo, head of iShares specialist sales for EMEA at BlackRock, said: “Despite a return to monetary policy normalisation in the US, rates look set to remain low compared to historic levels both in the US and Europe.

“In this environment, it can make sense to look for investments that aim to provide a steady stream of income.”

The funds are physically-replicating, meaning the funds hold the underlying securities of the index.  The funds carry a total expense ratio of 0.28% for the European exposure and 0.38% for the World exposure.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Gary Robinson
Deputy Editor, International Investment and Head of Video at Open Door Media Publishing. A fully qualified journalist and filmmaker with more than 20 years' financial services experience, both as journalist and originally as an IFA.

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