Use of ETFs on wrap platforms has increased significantly as they gain retail interest, according to iShares.
It reports that its ETFs have seen a 71% increase in assets held on platforms over the past year.
At the end of June, iShares had £723.5 mn in ETF assets across seven wrap platforms, an increase of 30% since the start of the year.
"The usage has increased primarily due to a movement toward model portfolios, either those constructed by advisers themselves or outsourced to discretionary managers," says David Bower, head of marketing at iShares EMEA.
He says this is part of a shift to more retail use of ETFs as there is wider acceptance of them as a tools to help manage portfolios.
The Retail Distribution Review (due to implemented in 2013) is likely to boost this further, "as a part of the RDR, advisers are required to look across a broad spectrum of investments to determine which are most suitable: this includes ETFs, investment trusts, structured products, etc. As advisers shift more toward the use of platforms, use of ETFs will naturally follow.
Bower adds that iShares is looking to offer ETFs on more platforms as part of a plan to double the amount of retail assets the ETF business holds over the next four years.
"Because ETFs are exchange-traded, any platform with brokerage capabilities should be able to offer ETFs," he says.
"This has historically been challenging, both operationally and commercially, but as the platform market and regulatory environment change, we see ETFs on all platforms as a natural evolution."
The iShares Barclays Capital £ Index Linked Gilt and iShares Markit iBoxx £ Corporate Bond funds were its most popular ETFs by assets in the first half of the year. Developed market property and broad-based equity markets exposure were also sought after.
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