SOURCE: Barclays Global Investors

June 22, 2009 10:45 ET

iShares Announces Launch of iShares MSCI All Peru Capped Index Fund (EPU)

iShares Marks the First ETF Family to Track Peruvian Market

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - June 22, 2009) - iShares, the world's largest provider of exchange traded funds (ETFs)(1), announced today the launch of the first Peru ETF listed in the U.S. The iShares MSCI All Peru Capped Index Fund (NYSE Arca: EPU) began trading today on NYSE Arca. iShares currently offers the most extensive line of international ETFs with more than 70 global, international and emerging market ETFs out of over 180 iShares funds listed in the U.S.

The fund will track the MSCI All Peru Capped Index, holding the top 25 Peruvian equity securities by free-float adjusted market cap, including those classified in Peru according to MSCI's methodology as well as securities of certain companies that are headquartered in Peru and have the majority of their operations based in Peru. Thirteen of the 25 index constituents are materials producers, providing investors with significant exposure to commodities. Top three index constituent names as of 03/31/09 are Buenaventura Minas, Southern Copper, and Credicorp. The fund's annual expense ratio is 0.63%.

"This new ETF is an excellent complement to BGI's existing Latin America funds, providing cost-efficient access and liquidity to the Peruvian market," said Noel Archard, Head of U.S. iShares Product Development.

"With the fastest growing economy in Latin America and one of the lowest inflation rates in the region(2), Peru's essentially untapped market offers diversification benefits and poses an attractive opportunity to investors," said Daniel Gamba, originally from Peru and CEO of Latin America for iShares.

Peru's Finance Minister Luis Carranza said, "This represents a great opportunity to invest in the Peruvian capital markets, which posted the best performance globally year to date in 2009(3). Peru represents one of the fastest-growing economies of Latin America. I am glad we can now trade Peru globally."

Peru has the third lowest EMBI (Emerging Market Bond Index) spread in Latin America, after Mexico and Chile, and an estimated economic growth rate of 3.5% in 2009, compared to the estimated regional growth rate of 0%(2). With the lowest average inflation rate in the Latin American region, strong macroeconomic fundamentals and a recent decline in fiscal and external vulnerabilities(4), the Peruvian market is now rated investment grade by S&P, Moody's and Fitch(5).

Advisors can visit to learn more about iShares international ETFs and use the International Exposure Tool to evaluate country and sector exposures in individual ETFs or across a portfolio. The tool is designed to increase transparency in international investing and model alternative portfolio allocations to more precisely align with investor goals.

The iShares funds are index funds that are bought and sold like common stocks on securities exchanges. The iShares funds are attractive to many individual and institutional investors and financial intermediaries because of their relative low cost, tax efficiency and trading flexibility. Investors can purchase and sell shares through any brokerage firm, financial advisor, or online broker, and hold the funds in any type of brokerage account.

Carefully consider the funds' investment objectives, risk factors and charges and expenses before investing. This and other information can be found in the funds' prospectuses, which may be obtained by calling 1-800-iShares or by visiting Read the prospectus carefully before investing.

About Barclays Global Investors/iShares:

Barclays Global Investors is one of the world's largest asset managers and a leading global provider of investment management products and services with more than 3,000 institutional clients and US$1.5 trillion of assets under management as of 31 December 2008. BGI transformed the investment industry by creating the first index strategy in 1971 and the first quantitative active strategy in 1979. BGI is the global product leader in exchange traded funds (iShares) with over 360 funds globally across equities, fixed income and commodities which trade on 18 exchanges worldwide. iShares customer base consists of the institutional segment of pension plans and fund managers, as well as the retail segment of financial advisors and high net worth individuals.

Investing involves risks, including possible loss of principal. Transactions in shares of the iShares Funds will result in brokerage commissions. Diversification may not protect against market risk. In addition to the normal risks associated with investing, international investments may involve risk of capital loss from unfavorable fluctuation in currency values, from differences in generally accepted accounting principles or from economic or political instability in other nations. Emerging markets involve heightened risks related to the same factors as well as increased volatility and lower trading volume. Securities focusing on a single country and narrowly focused investments may be subject to higher volatility.

Holdings are subject to change.

The iShares Funds are not sponsored, endorsed, issued, sold or promoted by MSCI Inc., nor does this company make any representation regarding the advisability of investing in the Funds. Neither SEI nor BGI, nor any of their affiliates, are affiliated with MSCI.

The iShares Funds ("Funds") are distributed by SEI Investments Distribution Co. (SEI). Barclays Global Fund Advisors (BGFA) serves as an advisor to the Funds. Barclays Global Investors Services (BGIS) assists in the marketing of the Funds. BGFA and BGIS are affiliates of Barclays Global Investors, N.A., a majority-owned subsidiary of Barclays Bank PLC, none of which is affiliated with SEI.

©2009 Barclays Global Investors, N.A. All rights reserved. iShares® is a registered trademark of Barclays Global Investors, N.A. All other trademarks, servicemarks or registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

(1) Source: Morgan Stanley Investment Strategies and Bloomberg as of
12/31/2008. Based on number of ETFs, AUM, and market share.
(2) Source: IMF World Economic Outlook Database as of 06/11/2009
(3) Source: data from the Peru Minister of Finance office as of 06/10/2009.
Past performance does not guarantee future results.
(4) Source: Bloomberg as of 06/11/2009
(5) Rating of creditworthiness generally encompasses likelihood of default,
payment priority, recovery, and credit stability