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Boston’s role as wealth management innovator expands, says Windham


Boston’s role as an innovator in the wealth management arena is continuing today with the development of a new market focused on the use of exchange-traded funds, according to Boston-based Windham Capital Management.

ETFs are being used to build smarter portfolios that provide family offices, financial advisers and high net worth investors with access to global financial markets in a highly liquid, tax-efficient manner.

“Two powerful trends are combining to make sophisticated ETF-based investment strategies more attractive to affluent investors as well as small institutions,” says Stan Shelton, Windham managing partner. “The first is the globalisation of markets, offering targeted access to international and emerging economies across a broad range of investments and market niches including commodities, real estate and currency. The second is the need to control the effects of market volatility, such as those that threatened both the net worth and the confidence of investors in 2008.”

Shelton says the approach was endorsed by Charles Schwab’s acquisition of Windward Investment Management, another Boston firm providing ETF-based investment strategies for the high net worth market.

“As market acceptance of this new strategy for affluent investors and small institutions grows, we anticipate that Boston will continue to play a key role in this market,” he adds. “Windham has a unique position in this space due to our use of proprietary risk measures that, prior to the significant market volatility of 2008, were only used to manage assets for our large institutional clients. Our process also has a heavy emphasis on managing taxes so that more wealth is preserved to fulfill investment goals.”

Windham recently launched the Windham Tactical Portfolio, which incorporates an active asset allocation strategy that uses proprietary risk measures to control exposures throughout market cycles. Through daily monitoring of the Windham Investment Risk Cycle, portfolio managers adjust the investment mix of the portfolio to grow principal in times of low risk and to preserve principal in times of high risk.

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