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Alps and Cohen & Steers launch global real estate ETF

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Cohen & Steers has announced the launch of a global real estate exchange-traded fund, adviser by Alps Advisers, which offers investors an opportunity to participate in the income strea

Cohen & Steers has announced the launch of a global real estate exchange-traded fund, adviser by Alps Advisers, which offers investors an opportunity to participate in the income streams and diversification benefits of global real estate securities.

The Cohen & Steers Global Realty Majors ETF aims to achieve investment results reflecting the performance of the Cohen & Steers Global Realty Majors Index, which comprises securities of companies evaluated according to factors including management strength, track record, market position, and the composition and quality of their real estate portfolios.

The fund targets 75 real estate companies from an initial universe of 500 located in developed markets across North America, the Asia-Pacific region and Europe. The companies are selected through a bottom-up process that uses quantitative screens and qualitative analysis to identify those best positioned to gain from the securitisation of global real estate.

Incorporating real estate securities into an ETF structure aims to provide investors with the low expenses, tax efficiency, transparency and liquidity that ETFs provide, along with the opportunity to benefit from potentially substantial and growing long-term income streams and diversification benefits.

‘By partnering with a real estate securities pioneer like Cohen & Steers to develop this ETF, we are offering investors a best-in-class approach to participating in the global real estate market,’ says Alps managing director Tom Carter. ‘Cohen & Steers has established an impressive track record in real estate securities analysis and investment that we believe will make this ETF a category leader.’

The partners note that many governments around the world have introduced or are evaluating the introduction of real estate investment structures similar to US Reits. As a result of the emergence of Reit-like structures, the total market capitalization of global real estate securities increased from USD110bn billion in 1992 to USD1.1trn last year, according to the S&P/Citigroup World Property Broad Market Index.

‘We’re pleased to be able to offer investors access to global real estate securities through an ETF,’ says Martin Cohen, co-chairman and co-chief executive of Cohen & Steers. ‘In our view, real estate is one of the best and most direct ways to invest in a country’s or region’s economy, which makes it a powerful tool for diversification.’

Cohen & Steers, which is based in New York and has offices in Brussels, Hong Kong, London and Seattle, is a manager of high-income equity portfolios, specialising in US and international real estate securities, preferred securities, utilities and listed infrastructure securities, and large cap value stocks. The firm manages open-ended and closed-end mutual funds and separate for individual and institutional investors.

Alps Holdings is a Denver-based provider of outsourced and advisory solutions to the investment management industry, including administration, compliance, creative services, fund accounting, legal, marketing, tax administration, transfer agency and shareholder services for open-ended, closed-ended, hedge and exchange-traded funds. Alps has some USD18bn in client mutual fund assets under administration.

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