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Canadian institutions and asset managers among world’s most active, sophisticated ETF investors


Canadian institutional investors are increasingly using exchange-traded funds (ETFs) for strategic asset allocations, and are leading the world in the innovative application of ETFs to realise their investment strategies – even beyond equities.

That’s according to the Greenwich Associates 2015 Canadian Exchange-Traded Funds study.
In its third annual survey of institutional ETF use, sponsored by BlackRock Asset Management, Greenwich Associates found that participating institutions hold just over one-fifth – 21.2 per cent – of total assets in ETFs, while asset managers allocate on average more than a quarter of total assets under management to the funds. Despite that already-strong usage, nearly a third of those surveyed plan to increase their ETF allocations in the coming year.
"We've seen institutional acceptance of ETFs explode in recent years, but today the 'how' of ETF use has become just as important as the 'how much,'" says Warren Collier, Managing Director, Head of iShares, BlackRock Canada. "As the survey shows, Canadian institutions are leading the world not only in how much they use ETFs, but also in the ways they are using them – from strategic allocations to achieving fixed income exposures and replacing derivatives. As more institutions realise the benefits of ETFs, we expect this trend to continue."
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