The structural shifts influencing the future of the global economy and society have accelerated in 2020, leading to increased investor demand for strategies that go beyond traditional sector, market capitalization and geographic classifications.
To help clients seek exposure to these transformative forces, BlackRock is expanding its Megatrend suite by introducing three active transparent exchange traded funds (ETFs) managed by experienced investors from BlackRock’s Fundamental Active Equity franchise and one index-tracking ETF. The funds are designed to provide unique exposure to technology and healthcare innovation.
Active Transparent ETFs:
BlackRock Future Health ETF (NYSE:BMED): Provides access to innovative and emerging companies in the healthcare sector
- Lead Portfolio Manager: Erin Xie, PhD
- Reference Benchmark: MSCI All Country World Index (ACWI)
BlackRock Future Tech ETF (NYSE:BTEK): Invests in companies developing innovative and emerging technologies in the technology sector
- Lead Portfolio Manager: Tony Kim
- Reference Benchmark: MSCI All Country World Index (ACWI)
BlackRock Future Innovators ETF (NYSE:BFTR): Offers exposure to innovative companies across sectors in the small/mid cap growth category
- Lead Portfolio Manager: Phil Ruvinsky
- Reference Benchmark: Russell 2500 Growth
iShares Virtual Work and Life Multisector ETF (NYSE:IWFH): Seeks to track an index of developed and emerging market companies that provide products, services and technologies that empower individuals to work remotely, and support an increasingly virtual way of life.
- Index: NYSE FactSet Global Virtual Work and Life Index
“Megatrends are driving the world’s economic, social and technological transformation, presenting tremendous investment opportunities and investor demand. We are still in the early days of growth for these funds. iShares projects that the megatrend category is projected to grow 500% to $250bn by 2024,” said Armando Senra, Head of iShares Americas. “The iShares Virtual Work and Life Multisector ETF will be the first to capture the globally diversified exposures representative of the trends that have been accelerated over the last six months. Around the world economic activity has already begun to shift as we become increasingly comfortable with a virtual and internet-dependent way of life and investors are looking for strategies to capture that change.”
Industry-Leading Alpha Seeking Expertise Accessible Through ETFs
BlackRock’s Active Equity platform delivers the combination of human insight with the power of the firm’s technology and risk platforms, along with the benefit of fundamental and quantitative global research and expertise in trading and market intelligence.
“The ability to innovate and capture disruption caused by innovation are critical to the success of active investors. Through these funds, our portfolio managers will be able to focus on secular changes disrupting our economy without being constrained by industries and sectors,” said Tony DeSpirito, Chief Investment Officer for Fundamental U.S. Active Equities, says “We are excited to leverage iShares’ infrastructure to deliver these funds as active transparent ETFs, a first for our team.”
The managers for BMED, BTEK and BFTR bring six decades of combined experience and demonstrated ability to generate alpha by deploying high conviction strategies informed by the evaluation of the financial prospects of companies, analysis of market behavior and exploitation of market trends. They are responsible for more than $80 billion AUM and are each the manager of five-star and medal rated funds, as rated by Morningstar.
Expanding Choice and Flexibility to Meet Client Needs
The launch of these four ETFs today are representative of the unique combination of capabilities and expertise in stock selection, ETF infrastructure, analytics and portfolio modeling that BlackRock leverages to deliver choice and flexibility to clients.
BlackRock’s commitment to helping clients build better financial futures is further represented through a commitment to launch active ETFs when the exposures are believed to add value for clients, have clear alpha potential and complement existing active and index ETFs and mutual funds.
“Because we offer a full spectrum of funds, we focus on delivering our capabilities in ways that seek to maximize the benefit to our clients. Today’s introduction of active and index ETFs is another example of that,” said Martin Small, Head of BlackRock’s U.S. Wealth Advisory business. “In order to help our clients better navigate our offerings, our index-based strategies will continue to be branded as iShares funds, and our alpha-seeking ETFs will be branded as BlackRock funds, reflecting the firm’s history as a premier active investor.”
Comparing Index and Active ETFs
Traditional index ETFs seek to track an index, typically constructed by a third-party index-provider, and reallocate at a pre-determined time period (e.g. on a semi-annual or annual basis). Index ETFs publish holdings daily, and the goal of the fund is to deliver returns in-line with their stated benchmark.
Transparent active ETFs also publish holdings daily, but do not seek to track a specific index and have a stated objective of maximizing income, long-term capital appreciation or total return. Investment decisions are made by BlackRock active portfolio managers, who use their IP to make changes to holdings within the ETF in accordance with the fund’s objective– therefore, the frequency in which holdings change will vary.
About BlackRock’s Actively Managed ETFs
BlackRock’s preexisting lineup of actively managed ETFs includes:
- BlackRock U.S. Equity Factor Rotation ETF (DYNF)
- iShares Short Maturity Municipal Bond ETF (MEAR)
- iShares Short Maturity Bond ETF (NEAR)
About the Portfolio Managers:
Dr. Erin Xie has more than 15 years of experience as a lead portfolio manager. She earned a PhD in Biochemistry from UCLA and an MBA from MIT Sloan. Dr. Xie is the lead manager of the BlackRock Health Sciences Opportunities Portfolio (SHSSX) – the No. 1 rated mutual fund for risk-adjusted returns in the Morningstar Healthcare category over the past 15 years1, and manages $25bn in dedicated health sciences portfolios.
Tony Kim, portfolio manager for the BlackRock Technology Opportunities Fund (BGSIX), is the only Morningstar gold rated portfolio manager in his category2. He has covered the tech sector for more than two decades. He is responsible for managing $18bln in technology equity portfolios. Mr. Kim earned his MBA degree from Columbia University and a BS degree from University of Illinois
Phil Ruvinsky is a senior portfolio manager for three funds (CMGIX, MAFOX and MAFGX) with $37.0 bn in AUM as of 8/31/20. Each fund has earned a Silver rating from Morningstar3. Mr. Ruvinsky holds a BA in economics from University of Texas, a JD degree from the University of Michigan Law School, and an MBA from Columbia Business School.
BlackRock’s purpose is to help more and more people experience financial well-being. As a fiduciary to investors and a leading provider of financial technology, our clients turn to us for the solutions they need when planning for their most important goals. As of June 30, 2020, the firm managed approximately $7.32 trillion in assets on behalf of investors worldwide. For additional information on BlackRock, please visit www.blackrock.com/corporate | Twitter: @blackrock | Blog: www.blackrockblog.com | LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/blackrock.
iShares unlocks opportunity across markets to meet the evolving needs of investors. With more than twenty years of experience, a global line-up of 900+ exchange traded funds (ETFs) and $2.16 trillion in assets under management as of June 30, 2020, iShares continues to drive progress for the financial industry. iShares funds are powered by the expert portfolio and risk management of BlackRock, trusted to manage more money than any other investment firm1.
1 Based on $7.32 trillion in AUM as of 6/30/20
Carefully consider the Funds’ investment objectives, risk factors, and charges and expenses before investing. This and other information can be found in the Funds’ prospectuses or, if available, the summary prospectuses which may be obtained by visiting www.iShares.com or www.blackrock.com. Read the prospectus carefully before investing.
Investing involves risk, including possible loss of principal.
1 Morningstar as of 8/31/20. Ranking based on total returns. Ranked against 70 funds on the 15-year horizon. 19 of 118 funds on the 1-year, 2 of 102 funds on the 3-year, 2 of 97 funds on the 5-year, and 1 of 86 funds on the 10-year. Universe is ETFs and mutual funds in the Morningstar category. Past performance does not guarantee future results. (AUM Source: BlackRock, as of 8/31/20)
2 Morningstar as at September 28th 2020. Morningstar peer group: US OE Technology
3 Morningstar Analyst Rating™is not a credit or risk rating. It is a subjective evaluation performed by Morningstar’s manager research group, which consists of various Morningstar, Inc. subsidiaries (“Manager Research Group”). In the United States, that subsidiary is Morningstar Research Services LLC, which is registered with and governed by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The Manager Research Group evaluates funds based on five key pillars, which are process, performance, people, parent, and price. The Manager Research Group uses this five pillar evaluation to determine how they believe funds are likely to perform relative to a benchmark, or in the case of exchange-traded funds and index mutual funds, a relevant peer group, over the long term on a risk-adjusted basis. They consider quantitative and qualitative factors in their research, and the weight of each pillar may vary. The Analyst Rating scale is Gold, Silver, Bronze, Neutral, and Negative. A Morningstar Analyst Rating of Gold, Silver, or Bronze reflects the Manager Research Group’s conviction in a fund’s prospects for outperformance. Analyst Ratings ultimately reflect the Manager Research Group’s overall assessment, are overseen by an Analyst Rating Committee, and are continuously monitored and reevaluated at least every 14 months. For more detailed information about Morningstar’s Analyst Rating, including its methodology, please go to global.morningstar.com/managerdisclosures/.
The Morningstar Analyst Rating (i) should not be used as the sole basis in evaluating a fund, (ii) involves unknown risks and uncertainties which may cause Analyst expectations not to occur or to differ significantly from what they expected, and (iii) should not be considered an offer or solicitation to buy or sell the fund.
Funds that concentrate investments in specific industries, sectors, markets or asset classes may underperform or be more volatile than other industries, sectors, markets or asset classes and the general securities market. Small-capitalization companies may be less stable and more susceptible to adverse developments, and their securities may be more volatile and less liquid than larger capitalization companies. Technology companies may be subject to severe competition and product obsolescence.
A fund’s use of derivatives may reduce a fund’s returns and/or increase volatility and subject the fund to counterparty risk, which is the risk that the other party in the transaction will not fulfill its contractual obligation. A fund could suffer losses related to its derivative positions because of a possible lack of liquidity in the secondary market and as a result of unanticipated market movements, which losses are potentially unlimited. There can be no assurance that any fund’s hedging transactions will be effective.
International investing involves risks, including risks related to foreign currency, limited liquidity, less government regulation and the possibility of substantial volatility due to adverse political, economic or other developments. These risks often are heightened for investments in emerging/developing markets and in concentrations of single countries.
The BlackRock funds are actively managed and their characteristics will vary.
The Funds are distributed by BlackRock Investments, LLC (together with its affiliates, “BlackRock”).
The iShares Funds are not sponsored, endorsed, sold or promoted by ICE Data Services, LLC, nor does this company make any representation regarding the advisability of investing in the Funds. BlackRock is not affiliated with ICE Data Services, LLC.
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