Certainly the biggest investment story of 2013 was the Rise of the ETF Strategist – the emergence of a new breed of asset manager with specialized skill in the construction and active management of portfolios using exchange traded funds.
As of Q3, 2013, the Morningstar ETF Managed Portfolios Landscape Summary is tracking 650 strategies from 150 firms mostly in the United States. The sector has experienced 46% growth year over year – with 32% of all ETF strategies invested in global all-asset portfolios like those managed by HAHN. The iShares Connect Study is tracking this trend in Canada, following 20 strategies from 11 managers with a total of $3 billion in ETF assets under management.
One of the biggest drivers of this growth has been interest from the advisor channel. Advisors are increasingly turning to outsourced asset management solutions to help them optimize and grow their own practices. In a 2011 Schwab study, US investment advisors indicated that time constraints are the biggest barrier to their success. Outsourcing asset management to an ETF strategist allows advisors to spend more time on value-added services such as financial planning and client service, which ultimately benefits their practice.
Time constraints are not the only reason advisors are outsourcing. With the increased complexity of global investment markets, and a renewed emphasis on asset allocation since the Global Financial Crisis, managed portfolios deliver institutional quality investment solutions to investors while complying with increased regulatory requirements. With the global trend toward increased fee transparency and fee based advisory services, managed portfolio solutions are a natural fit.
Media coverage has been extensive this year, as journalists cover the growing ETF strategist phenomenon. HAHN has been featured numerous times in recent months in on-line, print and television interviews, including Investment Executive, BNN, the Toronto Star, MoneySense and GoldenGirl Finance. What began as an ETF story has now evolved into one about portfolio management and how ETFs have revolutionized the asset management industry.
2013 marked a significant landmark for HAHN – ten years of providing personalized, institutional quality active global asset allocation strategies to investors. Since our inception we have demonstrated an ability to manage client assets through challenging markets and economic environments.
In November we proudly launched our new website, featuring our core values of globalism, stewardship and personalized asset management. Our new site features video of key personnel explaining the fundamentals on which HAHN was founded.
Our new website is also a hub for thought leadership on ETF portfolios and global macro strategy. Through blogs, newsletters, articles and white papers, HAHN communicates and defines the growth of the ETF strategist space. Our recent webinar, “How to Spot a Bubble in Advance” hosted by Wilfred Hahn, attracted our largest advisor audience ever.
HAHN is proud to receive referrals from independent financial professionals committed to delivering financial services that optimize our portfolio management services. We believe in the importance of financial planning and the value a trusted financial professional can bring to one’s overall investment programme. Our new HAHN website features a private area for financial professionals, where detailed investment information on HAHN’s philosophy and process may be accessed.
Twice annually, HAHN meets with private clients and financial professionals in a forum designed to communicate in person the latest thinking from our strategy sessions. For the first time ever this fall, HAHN’s investment symposium went national, visiting six cities over two weeks in October. Thank you to all the advisors and investors who attended and we look forward to seeing you at our next Symposium event.
In summary, it’s been an exciting year at HAHN. We’re proud to have been a pioneer in the fastest growing segment of the asset management industry – the ETF Managed portfolio.
More importantly, we’re gratified to have brought a better way to invest to thousands of investors – to have delivered personalized asset management and peace of mind by exercising discipline and stewardship in every facet of our business.
From all of us at HAHN, we want to thank you for your support this year, and we wish you peace, good health and prosperity in 2014.