Bloomberg entered the U.S. equity index market, introducing equity benchmark capabilities. The equity offering includes the Bloomberg U.S. Large Cap Index (B500) as well as growth, value and dividend indices.The benchmarks serve as the basis for the new Bloomberg SASB ESG Index family that also includes Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG)-weighted versions of the value, growth and dividend indices, it announced.
“Building equity index capabilities was a natural extension of our existing suite of fixed income, commodity and currency indices,” according to Steve Berkley, global head of Bloomberg Indices. “We are responding to requests from investors to offer comprehensive and competitive equity index solutions to help our existing index clients address their needs across asset classes,” he said in a statement.
The ESG index family includes the Bloomberg SASB ESG equity index for U.S. large cap equity and the Bloomberg SASB ESG fixed income index for investment-grade corporate bonds. R-FactorTM, an ESG scoring solution developed and made available to the market by State Street Global Advisors, is being used for the index family.
John Hancock Signs Deal with Morningstar
John Hancock Retirement signed a deal with Morningstar Investment Management to offer Morningstar’s advisor managed account services to RIA firms and their advisors for retirement plan clients, the companies announced. The offering will be piloted in the first quarter of 2020 and John Hancock said it expects to roll out the offering more broadly later in the year.
Using the Morningstar services, retirement plan participants can get personalized advice based on model portfolios aligned with the RIA firm’s investment expertise and philosophies, the companies explained. The goals-based program “considers, among many factors, each participant’s age, salary, account balance, contribution rate, gender, risk capacity, as well as tax and plan rules to help them achieve their personal retirement goals,” they said in an announcement.
“This agreement represents another step in the evolution of our advice offering,” according to Patrick Murphy, John Hancock Retirement CEO. “We’re building on a 15-year relationship with Morningstar, which started with our single proprietary managed account product,” he said in a statement, adding: “Our new offering leverages the advisor community’s expertise and ultimately enables us to help a greater number of participants reach their retirement goals.”
As of June 30, 2019, Morningstar’s managed accounts and advice services were used by almost 250,000 plans and more than 1.5 million participants, with $66.7 billion in assets under advisement and management, they noted. Central to the services is Morningstar Investment Management’s patented process that determines each participant’s investment portfolio assignment based on their risk capacity and other factors, the companies said.
Deutsche Bank Wealth Management Extends ESG Offering
Deutsche Bank Wealth Management expanded its ESG strategy as a new generation of wealthy clients increasingly ask their advisors to help them “add purpose” to their investment performance, according to the company.
For starters, the wealth management division of Deutsche Bank is adopting ESG ratings from MSCI to give clients valuable standardized information on non-financial risks and opportunities when making investment decisions.
The company is also further extending its ESG product offering across discretionary wealth management and investment advisory, launching new research, client materials and events, it said.
“This fast-growing area is of critical relevance for our clients and for the future of our business and society,” according to Fabrizio Campelli, its global head of wealth management. “ESG comes up more and more often in our regular discussions with clients…. ESG analysis, guidance and investments are rapidly becoming not just an important component of our client offering but the essential foundation for everything we do.”
Franklin Templeton Introduces New Fixed Income ETF
Franklin Templeton expanded its active fixed income ETF offerings with the addition of Franklin Liberty U.S. Core Bond ETF (FLCB), which the company said is designed to provide investors with diversified core fixed income exposure.
FLCB is an active ETF with a net expense ratio of 0.15% that “seeks total return through bottom-up fundamental bond selection and top-down sector allocation” and is listed on the NYSE Arca, it announced.
“We believe active management is critical for achieving long-term returns and managing investment risk, particularly in multi-sector investment grade fixed income,” according to Patrick O’Connor, global head of ETFs for Franklin Templeton. FLCB “can serve as a core, building block allocation in an investor’s portfolio,” he noted in a statement.
FLCB is managed by David Yuen, senior vice president and head of quantitative and multi-sector strategies; Amy Cooper, vice president and portfolio manager; Patrick Klein, senior vice president and portfolio manager, multi-sector strategies; and Tina Chou, vice president and portfolio manager with Franklin Templeton Fixed Income Group.