BlackRock launches low-priced ETFs in Europe

ETF tradingBlackRock has launched 14 low-cost exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in Europe that were previously only available in North America. The firm says the ETFs – nine equity and five fixed income – have some of the lowest prices in Europe, with total expense ratios ranging between ten and 25 basis points. “The industry is at a tipping point for mass market usage,” says Rachel Lord, head of BlackRock's ETF division, iShares, in Europe, Middle East and Africa. “What started as a tool for institutions has now been adopted by a broad spectrum of investors.” Lord says the new ETF range, which includes funds tracking the FTSE 100 and the MSCI World indices, can be used as building blocks by retail investors and their advisers, as well as by institutional investors. The products will compete with ETFs from Vanguard Asset Management and other providers. Vanguard has established a reputation for low-cost index funds and ETFs, and has steadily increased the range of its products available in Europe. BlackRock launched a similar series of iShares ETFs in the US in 2012 and in Canada in March of this year. “Retail investors, and the intermediaries and platforms they invest through, will be a key driver of ETF industry growth,” says Mark Johnson, head of UK sales, iShares. ©2014 funds europe

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