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iShares launches three new small-cap ETFs in London

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iShares, the exchange-traded fund provider arm of Barclays Global Investors, has launched three new small cap iShares ETFs, adding coverage of small-cap stocks in the US, Japan and Asia ex

iShares, the exchange-traded fund provider arm of Barclays Global Investors, has launched three new small cap iShares ETFs, adding coverage of small-cap stocks in the US, Japan and Asia excluding Japan to its existing products covering the European market.

The launch of the iShares S&P SmallCap 600, iShares MSCI AC Far East ex-Japan SmallCap and the iShares MSCI Japan SmallCap ETFs on the London Stock Exchange adds to the firm’s established iShares DJ Euro Stoxx SmallCap and iShares DJ Stoxx Small 200.

The iShares S&P SmallCap 600 provides investors with liquid exposure to US small cap stocks across a wide range of sectors. The main sectors covered are by the index, as of March 12, were information technology (18 per cent), financials (17 per cent), industrials (17 per cent), health care (14 per cent), and consumer discretionary (13 per cent.

The iShares MSCI AC Far East ex-Japan SmallCap provides small cap exposure to developed and emerging market economies in East Asia including South Korea (25 per cent), Taiwan (23 per cent), Hong Kong (15 per cent),= and China (13 per cent), and sectors including financials (23 per cent), consumer discretionary (19 per cent) and industrials (18 per cent).

The iShares MSCI Japan SmallCap covers Japanese small cap companies in sectors including financials (22 per cent), industrials (22 per cent), consumer discretionary (21 per cent) and information technology (12 per cent.

‘iShares recognises that small cap ETFs can provide investors with the opportunity to add real value to their asset allocation needs,’ says head of product development Frank Henze. ‘Although small caps are considered more volatile than other types of equities, research suggests that they can outperform large caps over the long term.

‘Small cap stocks have therefore gained in popularity across a wide spectrum of investors as they recognise how these stocks are driving returns in customers’ portfolios. It is our belief that small cap stocks will continue to contribute to future economic growth and therefore represent an attractive investment choice.

‘These funds fit in well with the overall philosophy of iShares’ product development. Our aim is to build a high quality, comprehensive product suite with our clients’ asset allocation needs as its core. These new products are compelling portfolio construction tools for investors in this regard; they allow precision and flexibility in clients’ asset allocation decisions.’

The launches take the total number of iShares ETFs listed on the London Stock Exchange to 62, and boosts the number of iShares ETFs available throughout Europe to 142, reinforcing its position as the UK’s and Europe’s leading ETF provider. There are more than 190 iShares ETFs worldwide.

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