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Advisors Turn To ETFs For Risk Management

Stocks in this article: IVZ

TORONTO, Nov. 30, 2012 /CNW/ - Financial advisors expect to see increased use of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in client portfolios, while aversion to risk remains high, according to a recently released Invesco Ltd. market study of U.S. registered investment advisors (RIAs).

Invesco's Canadian subsidiary, Invesco Canada, offers 14 ETFs under the PowerShares Canada brand.

Advisors surveyed believe ETFs will make up 24 percent of portfolio allocations over the next 12 months and 33 percent over the next three years, representing a 10 percent increase over results reported in Invesco's survey of advisors in 2011.

Against a lingering backdrop of global economic uncertainty, advisors still see clients remaining vigilant in their aversion to risk as 91 percent believe their clients are more interested in minimizing losses than maximizing gains.

"This year's study continues to show how financial advisors are embracing the value of ETFs and the many ways they can be implemented in their clients' portfolios," said Michael Cooke, Head of Distribution, PowerShares Canada. "But even as many equity markets have shown signs of strength year to date, advisors are still indicating that risk management is a primary focus and they are looking to a variety of products, including alternative assets, to manage risk."

The survey also found a growing appetite for complex strategies, such as smart-beta ETFs, but broader adoption will require more education on how these strategies can best serve investors.

"ETF adoption rates in the U.S. have tended to lead those in Canada by several years, suggesting that ETF usage can be expected to continue among Canadian advisors. But this growth in adoption will require education - an area where PowerShares Canada has become a leader," said Cooke.

With such issues as portfolio allocation and risk management in mind, Invesco Ltd. partnered with Cogent Research LLC to conduct its second blinded study to learn what is top of mind for advisors and their clients given current market conditions.

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