Displaying items by tag: Blackrock
With apparent eroding client interest, ESGs might be losing some of their bang, according to thinkadvisor.com. In the past several months, 31% of advisors reported taking questions about ESG or socially responsible investing from clients. That’s down from 39% who indicated as much last year and in 2020.
Thirty four percent of advisors were found to tap or recommend these strategies to clients this year, according to the survey. While that’s an uptick of 2 percentage points from 2021, it receded from a high of 38% in 2020.
Investmentnews.com reported in June that, in recent years, while a burgeoning percentage of financial advisors folded ESG investments options into their business, more now indicated they intend shore back on suggesting such investments, according to a survey.
While financial advisor use or recommendation of environmental, social and governance or ESG investing strategies have moved consistently along over the past four years, according to prnewswire.com. However, during the next 12 months, it could slip in use, according to the 2022 Trends in Investing Survey, conducted by the Journal of Financial Planning and the Financial Planning Association, as provided to prnewswire.com by the Financial Planning Association.
It would be an understatement to say BlackRock has been a leader in ESG the last couple of years but the tides could be turning. There have been massive outflows from ESG in the month of May which has been unusual given the asset classes' widespread popularity where they topped $3.5 billion. BlackRock has been the main source of outflows from IShares ESG Aware MSCI EM and other popular funds. BlackRock has cut two of iShares most popular funds from seven of their ten models. This is potentially a huge blow, as it could signal the firms changing stance in ESG or it could just be smoke and mirror as asset allocations normally change. ESGs inclusion in many model portfolios has been key to its growing popularity.
Finsum: Are ESG investors really so skittish with the tightening in the economy; the long-term prospects for ESG still seem overwhelming.
Some seasoned stock market investors may be calling to buy the dip, but BlackRock just isn’t there yet. The world’s largest asset manager says that valuations just aren’t there yet and assume that in combination with the Fed tightening cycle and thin profit margins there is too much risk. The confluence of factors among inflation, Ukraine-Russia War, and Fed tightening have sent volatility shockwaves through bond and equity markets in the last couple of months. There are other investors who see it the same way as BlackRock, and want a much more prominent spike in the VIX in order to prompt a buy back. The bearishness isn’t completely pervasive as analysts on average are expecting profits to grow by over 10% across the S&P this year.
Finsum: The Euro area could already be in a recession in large part due to the war, which could drive more value in US assets or trigger a recession stateside.
BlackRock's active management has long been the forgotten investment in the firm's giant ETF basket they manage, but things are starting to turn. While the index business hit $10 trillion in the last quarter it was the active funds dring the fee growth in fact in the last quarter of 2021 they were responsible for 60% of the fee growth. The firm has poured lots of resources into their active funds and their active fixed-income has been a huge winner. The firm seems more willing now than ever to place itself as a big active manager where they have always been synonymous with passive investing. BlackRock credits its growth to its own internal push in active management but there has been a huge industry-wide surge in active funds.
FINSUM: Active equity still lags behind for lots of reasons, so its probably best to stick to direct indexing or ETFs in equity markets.
Fidelity made a splash with its announcement of a $5,000 minimum direct indexing product a couple of weeks ago, and there has been a rush by Vanguard, JPMorgan, and BlackRock to acquire direct indexing firms. Goldman has been a long-time investor provider of direct indexing services, in fact over 20 years ago. Goldman specialized in wealthier clients with a minimum investment of $250,000. Goldman offers software tools for clients to use to add and drop stocks from indices. Most of the time they do this for tax purposes but sometimes clients customize by dropping equity sinners like fossil fuels or prisons. Goldman's direct indexing is a form of active management with higher fees than passive funds, but certainly more futures.
FINSUM: The advent of direct indexing for all will be an interesting follow as lower minimums become the new norm.