First Asset Exchange Traded Funds

First Asset Exchange Traded Funds
First Asset

First Asset

February 11, 2014 07:00 ET

First Asset Launches Four Low Risk Weighted ETFs Based on MSCI Indexes

Canadian investors now have a unique opportunity to access index tracking products that are designed to emphasize lower risk stocks and capture the volatility and size effect factors which aim to deliver superior risk-adjusted portfolio returns.

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Feb. 11, 2014) -

NOT FOR DISSEMINATION TO U.S. NEWSWIRE SERVICES OR FOR DISSEMINATION TO THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

First Asset Investment Management Inc. (First Asset), an independent Canadian investment management company, is pleased to announce the launch of four new Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) built on MSCI risk weighted equity indexes.

"The MSCI Risk Weighted Indexes are uniquely designed to provide broad market exposure to the geographical regions they represent, while being weighted on the basis of low volatility. We believe these new ETFs, which aim to replicate the MSCI indexes, provide Canadian investors excellent diversification and attractive risk-adjusted returns," said Barry Gordon, First Asset CEO.

First Asset MSCI USA Low Risk Weighted ETF (TSX - symbol RWU) and First Asset MSCI Europe Low Risk Weighted ETF (TSX - symbol RWE) will commence trading today on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX). First Asset MSCI World Low Risk Weighted ETF (TSX - symbol RWW) and First Asset MSCI Canada Low Risk Weighted ETF (TSX - symbol RWC) are expected to commence trading on the TSX on Wednesday, February 19th, 2014, subject to applicable TSX approvals.

First Asset MSCI Europe Low Risk Weighted ETF is the first and only European low risk weighted ETF in Canada. "European equities are trading at attractive valuations relative to their historic mean and earnings growth is poised to accelerate along with a broader regional economic recovery," said Mr. Gordon. "Accordingly, European equities stand to benefit both from multiple expansion as well as organic appreciation." The Fund will provide Canadian advisors and investors exposure to a broad portfolio of European stocks weighted on the basis of lower historical volatility. The result is a bias towards lower risk and lower size stocks that have historically earned a persistent premium over long periods of time relative to cap-weighted indexes.

"MSCI's Factor Indexes capture the systematic returns of key investment styles. MSCI's Risk Weighted Indexes, part of this family, provide a tool to help clients aiming to efficiently mitigate risk," said Diana Tidd, Managing Director and Head of the MSCI Index Business in the Americas. "We're pleased to work with First Asset as they continue to expand their factor-based index ETFs in the Canadian market."

The MSCI Risk Weighted Indexes are designed to tilt a traditional market cap-weighted index towards stocks with lower risk. Each MSCI Risk Weighted Index reweights all the constituents of a cap-weighted MSCI parent index so that stocks with lower historical return variance are given higher index weights. By emphasizing low volatility stocks in this way, the MSCI Risk Weighted Indices have historically exhibited lower realized volatility compared to their respective parent MSCI indices, and a bias away from large cap stocks evidenced in a cap-weighted methodology, while maintaining reasonable liquidity, capacity and representation of the parent index.

"The launch of these factor-based index tracking products brings our total number of First Asset ETFs to 23," said Rohit Mehta, Senior Vice President at First Asset. "Factor-based ETFs continue to gain advisor and investor support as they couple the best of what ETFs have to offer - liquidity, transparency, and low cost, together with strategies that aim to deliver better risk-adjusted returns than traditional market capitalization weighted indexes."

First Asset MSCI ETFs

Name of ETF TSX TICKER SYMBOL
First Asset MSCI USA Low Risk Weighted ETF RWU
Advisor Class Units RWU.A
Unhedged Common Units RWU.B
Unhedged Advisor Class Units RWU.D
First Asset MSCI Europe Low Risk Weighted ETF RWE
Advisor Class Units RWE.A
Unhedged Common Units RWE.B
Unhedged Advisor Class Units RWE.D
First Asset MSCI World Low Risk Weighted ETF RWW
Advisor Class Units RWW.A
Unhedged Common Units RWW.B
Unhedged Advisor Class Units RWU.D
First Asset MSCI Canada Low Risk Weighted ETF RWC
Advisor Class Units RWC.A

These ETFs will be denominated in Canadian dollars. First Asset MSCI USA Low Risk Weighted ETF, First Asset MSCI Europe Low Risk Weighted ETF, and First Asset MSCI World Low Risk Weighted ETF will be offered in hedged and unhedged versions to provide investors with the flexibility to choose whether they want exposure to the underlying currencies. These ETFs will also offer Advisor Class units in both hedged and unhedged versions.

RWU and RWE have closed the initial offering of their units and the units will begin trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange when it opens this morning.

For more information or to arrange an interview please visit www.firstasset.com.

About First Asset

Founded in 1996, First Asset is a Canadian, independent investment management company that manages and administers approximately $3 billion in total assets. First Asset offers a diverse range of investment products including ETFs, mutual funds and other exchange listed investment funds, covering a variety of domestic and global mandates. www.firstasset.com

This communication is intended for informational purposes only. The ETFs are offered by prospectus. The prospectus contains important detailed information about the ETFs and their units. Copies of the prospectus may be obtained from your investment advisor, First Asset or at www.sedar.com. Investors should read the prospectus before making an investment decision. Commissions, trailing fees, management fees and expenses all may be associated with investments in the ETFs. The ETFs are managed by First Asset Investment Management Inc.

MSCI is a trademark of MSCI Inc. The MSCI indexes have been licensed for use for certain purposes by First Asset. The First Asset ETFs are not sponsored, endorsed, sold or promoted by MSCI Inc. or any of its affiliates (collectively, "MSCI"), and MSCI makes no representation regarding the advisability of investing in the First Asset ETFs.

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