S&P sees high demand for index-linked ETFs

S and PS&P Indices says there were 41 exchange-traded funds (ETFs) based on its indices launched in the first quarter, with more than half (23) launched in Europe. If this rate continues, there will be twice as many S&P-linked ETFs launched this year as in 2011.

S&P attributed the rising appetite for licensing of its indices to the maturing market for ETFs in Europe and the Asia-Pacific region.

“Investor interest in ETFs, especially outside of the States, is rapidly increasing as these products are providing greater access to niche market segments and varying asset classes at fractions of the cost typically associated with actively managed products such as mutual funds,” said Alexander Matturri, executive managing director at S&P Indices.

According to BlackRock, there were 229 exchange-traded products launched in the first quarter, implying that funds based on S&P indices accounted for nearly a fifth of all launches. S&P said there are now 419 ETFs linked to its indices available worldwide.

Lyxor, PowerShares and Mirae Asset Management led the ranks of firms launching S&P-linked ETFs in the first quarter.

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