About KBWKBW (Keefe, Bruyette & Woods, Inc., operating in the U.S., and Stifel Nicolaus Europe Limited, also trading as Keefe, Bruyette & Woods Europe, operating in Europe) is a Stifel company. Over the years, KBW has established itself as a leading independent authority in the banking, insurance, brokerage, asset management, mortgage banking and specialty finance sectors. Founded in 1962, the firm maintains industry-leading positions in the areas of research, corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions as well as sales and trading in equities securities of financial services companies.
Keefe, Bruyette & Woods (KBW), a Stifel company (NYSE: SF), and Invesco (NYSE: IVZ) today announced that the PowerShares KBW Bank Portfolio (KBWB) exchange-traded fund (ETF) has surpassed $1 billion in assets under management (AUM). KBWB seeks to track the performance of the KBW Nasdaq Bank Index (BKX), a float-adjusted, modified market-cap weighted index that consists of 24 large publicly traded U.S. national money centers, regional banks, and thrift institutions. "Passing the $1 billion milestone demonstrates the value of KBWB for investors looking for targeted access to the largest U.S. banks," said Fred Cannon, Global Director of Research at KBW. "Our research shows that banks of varying sizes operate with distinctively different business models, leading to diverse performance and valuation trends. Investors benefit from KBWB's targeted inclusion of large-cap banks, and as the only true large-cap bank ETF, we are proud to see the fund's growth since its inception in November 2011." Since June, the financial sector significantly outperformed the broader market, resulting in an increased interest in investible financial services products with an estimated $8.1 billion in inflows from June 6 through December 1. Over this period, the S&P 500 Financials gained 17.9% while the S&P 500 Index rose 8.8%. The largest banks drove much of the financials' performance, with KBWB advancing 17.6%. "We continue to see strong interest in KBWB," said Dan Draper, Global Head of ETFs at Invesco. "That is likely the result of market optimism toward stronger economic growth, corporate tax reform and higher interest rates, which overall has created an improved outlook for banks." The KBW Financial ETFs and KBW Nasdaq family of indexes track various subsectors of the financial services industry. The BKX, the most widely cited barometer of U.S. bank performance, is designed specifically to provide investors with differentiated exposure to the universal and large regional banking sector. Members range in market cap from $6.5 billion to $364 billion, with a median constituent capitalization of $24 billion.