The Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) is continuing to provide SMSF investors with access to overseas markets through its increasing range of products such as exchange-traded funds (ETF) and listed investment companies (LIC), according a senior executive in the organisation.
Speaking at this year’s Australian Shareholders’ Association Conference in Melbourne, ASX head of customer and business development Ian Irvine told delegates: “While the big success story in the ETF market was with the State Street Global Advisors STW, which came to market in 2001, it was all about Australian equities. It really tracked the ASX 200 Index.
“Now 47 per cent of the ETFs on the exchange are offering exposure to overseas markets, such as a passive exposure to the S&P 500 Index or the Global 100, allowing you to buy the top 100 stocks around the world.
“It’s really taken us away from the Australian market but through the ASX to get to global equities.”
Irvine pointed out a similar trend is happening in the LIC space.
“When you looked at a listed investment company years and years ago, they were all about Australian securities – they held a bunch of Australian shares in a company structure that itself was listed on the exchange,” he said.
“But there’s now about 20 per cent that have actually got global exposure and more recently the IPOs (initial public offerings), or the new products coming to market, of LICs has had a global focus.
“So there is now a way [for SMSF investors] to get global exposure with an active manager who uses a company structure to go to overseas markets.”
Irvine said he also wanted SMSF investors to be aware of the suite of products the ASX now had on offer, including active ETFs and single asset managed funds.
“If any of you are familiar with the XTB Corporate Bond product, that’s what I’m talking about where one corporate bond is held in a managed fund wrapper,” he said.''