Franklin Templeton launches first European ETFs

ETF_tradingUS funds giant Franklin Templeton has launched a range of Europe-listed exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in an attempt to muscle in on growing demand in the region for passively-managed funds.

The California-based firm, the second largest US-listed asset manager by market capitalisation with some US$753 billion (€624 billion) of assets under management, has largely built its reputation as an active manager but has suffered outflows of $116 billion over the last three years as investors pile money into passively-run funds.

Last year Franklin fought back by launching a range of smart-beta ETFs in the US and in May launched four funds in Canada.

Yesterday, Franklin launched four of its LibertyShares equity smart beta ETFs on the Deutsche Börse where they are denominated in euros. The funds began trading in London today denominated in sterling.

The funds will use Euroclear’s international issuance structure for ETFs which provides a single place for settlement through Euroclear’s Brussels-based international central securities depositary.

Two of the ETFs are income-focussed funds while the other two are multi-factor funds with a specific focus on quality stocks.

“Our strategic goal, three years in the making, has been to build a world class global ETF platform,” said Patrick O’Connor, Franklin’s head of global ETFs.

“Our first European offerings aim to help investors achieve specific investment outcomes such as strong risk-adjusted returns, lower volatility and downside protection.”

The portfolio management team incudes San Mateo-based Dina Ting and London-based Lorenzo Crosato, who joined Franklin from BlackRock last month.

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