BlackRock Canada expands iShares suite

BlackRock Canada expands iShares suite

BlackRock Canada expands iShares suite It is without doubt the industry leader in the ETF segment – and now the iShares suite has been expanded on by BlackRock Canada.

The company has launched three new funds: the iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol USA Index ETF (CAD-Hedged) (XMS); the iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol EAFE Index ETF (CAD-Hedged) (XML); and the iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol Global Index ETF (CAD-Hedged) (XMY). They are collectively launched under the brand iShares Edge and are all now available on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

According to Andrew Ang, head of factor investing strategies at BlackRock, the addition of the funds will offer investors greater flexibility while also helping to manage the potential impact of a strengthening Canadian dollar. 

“While factor-based strategies are well-established investing concepts in portfolio management, advances in technology and data-analytics have democratized the delivery of these investment solutions and made them more accessible to all investors,” he said.

“As we look to create more efficient and effective portfolios, it’s important for investors to take a step back and understand what ultimately drives returns. Part of what makes factors so powerful is their ability to reach across all asset classes and investment strategies and focus on the outcomes they are looking to achieve.” 

With volatility rising, investors have regularly been looking to soften their risk profile and there have been strong inflows into the Canadian ETF industry – with more than C$500 million entering minimum volatility funds during the first quarter of the year. The figure blows away the total from the first quarter last year by nearly 30 per cent.   

“Today, we are seeing strong demand for solutions that allow investors to express a view on currency, to reduce volatility in their portfolios, or achieve outperformance,” added Pat Chiefalo, head of Canadian product, iShares, at BlackRock Canada. “For investors that are concerned about potential volatility in their portfolios, these new funds allow them to maintain exposures to equities for the long-term, while also providing additional flexibility to protect or benefit from fluctuations in the Canadian currency.”

The new funds are:
 
Ticker Fund Name Management Fee
XMS iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol USA Index ETF (CAD-Hedged) 0.30%
XML iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol EAFE Index ETF (CAD-Hedged) 0.35%
XMY iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol Global Index ETF (CAD-Hedged) 0.45%
 
In addition, BlackRock Canada has announced name changes for a number of its factor-based iShares funds. The table below sets out the new names which are effective now:
 
Ticker Previous Name New Name
XFC iShares FactorSelect™ MSCI Canada Index ETF iShares Edge MSCI Multifactor Canada Index ETF
XFI iShares FactorSelect™ MSCI EAFE Index ETF iShares Edge MSCI Multifactor EAFE Index ETF
XFF iShares FactorSelect™ MSCI EAFE Index ETF (CAD-Hedged) iShares Edge MSCI Multifactor EAFE Index ETF (CAD-Hedged)
XFS iShares FactorSelect™ MSCI USA Index ETF iShares Edge MSCI Multifactor USA Index ETF
XFA iShares FactorSelect™ MSCI USA Index ETF (CAD-Hedged) iShares Edge MSCI Multifactor USA Index ETF (CAD-Hedged)
XMW iShares MSCI All Country World Minimum Volatility Index ETF iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol Global Index ETF
XMV iShares MSCI Canada Minimum Volatility Index ETF iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol Canada Index ETF
XMI iShares MSCI EAFE Minimum Volatility Index ETF               iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol EAFE Index ETF
XMM iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Minimum Volatility Index ETF iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol Emerging Markets Index ETF
XMU iShares MSCI USA Minimum Volatility Index ETF iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol USA Index ETF