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iShares launches GCC and emerging market SmallCap products

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Exchange traded fund provider iShares has launched two ETFs on the London Stock Exchange, including Europe’s first product to provide exposure to the Gulf Cooperation Council region in

Exchange traded fund provider iShares has launched two ETFs on the London Stock Exchange, including Europe’s first product to provide exposure to the Gulf Cooperation Council region in one fund structure.

The iShares MSCI GCC Countries ex-Saudi Arabia offers combined exposure to equity markets in Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Qatar and Oman.

The ETF captures the performance of a range of sectors within the GCC ex-Saudi Arabia markets. Although traditionally the economies have been oil-based, listed companies in the GCC countries reflect the trend to diversify and create new sustainable areas of economic activity. 

The sector exposures captured in this product include companies active in the financial, real estate, mobile telecommunications, industrial and materials sectors.

The iShares MSCI Emerging Markets SmallCap fund is an addition to iShares’ existing regional and country-based small cap offerings and is an extension to its emerging markets product set. It provides efficient exposure to small cap stocks from a range of emerging market countries, which can otherwise be difficult to access in a cost-efficient manner.

Nizam Hamid, head of sales strategy for iShares, Europe, says: ‘We are delighted to offer investors the opportunity to diversify their portfolios geographically with these two new products. It has historically been difficult to access GCC markets, and whilst there are products offering exposure to individual countries and to the region as part of broader benchmarks, the iShares MSCI GCC Countries ex-Saudi Arabia is the first ETF in Europe to focus on the five investible GCC markets within a single fund.

‘Investors in the iShares MSCI Emerging Markets SmallCap fund will benefit from access to a geographically-diverse range of small cap stocks from across all sectors within the cost-efficient and transparent structure of an ETF. With this launch, iShares is pleased to be able to provide the most comprehensive suite of small cap and emerging markets ETFs in Europe with both broad-based small cap ETFs and country-based funds giving exposure to this difficult to access asset class.’

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