Bonds: IG

Touchstone Investments, which is known for its Distinctively Active® funds, recently announced the launch of its fourth actively managed ETF, the Touchstone Ultra Short Income ETF (TUSI). The fund, which started trading on the Cboe BZX, seeks maximum total return consistent with the preservation of capital by primarily investing in a diversified portfolio of investment grade fixed income securities. Its portfolio is managed to maintain an effective duration of one year or less under normal market conditions. Managers for TUSI buy fixed-income securities believed to be attractively priced relative to the market or similar securities. The launch follows three actively managed ETFs launched during the summer including the Touchstone Strategic Income Opportunities ETF (SIO), the Touchstone US Large Cap Focused ETF (BZX), and the Touchstone Dividend Select ETF (DVND). Each ETF has a corresponding mutual fund that shares a similar investment strategy. All four ETFs are sub-advised by Fort Washington Investment Advisors. 


Finsum:Touchstone Investments recently launched the Touchstone Ultra Short Income ETF, its fourth actively managed ETF launch this summer.

There has been a sharp uptick in the high-value bond ETF trades in the last 12-months which most investors are attributing to activity from large institutional investors. Transactions are up as much as 36% on some platforms from the previous year. This has been part of a longer more ongoing trend that has been successful for many bond funds. Since the GFC, investors have questioned the resiliency of these funds to economic downturns, but regulators and investors alike are pleased with their performance in the covid pandemic. Just as important to this is the support from the Fed and Fiscal policy to the economy. Stepping in with bond relief has helped these ETFs. Finally, the increase in investment in bond ETFs has actually led to tighter underlying spreads in bond markets themselves and reflects better liquidity.


Finsum: Many believe that over-investment in index funds could be disruptive to equity volatility over time, but it appears to be stabilizing bond spreads.

Macro conditions have left many investors skittish regarding the future of fixed income funds, but BlackRock is firm in its belief in the future of Fixed Income ETFs. BR said that despite headwinds from rising rates and inflation they expect bond ETFs to surpass $2 trillion in the next year and a half and to hit $5 trillion by 2030. While the current environment doesn’t make investors ecstatic about the bond market future, many overlook the traditional role they fill in a portfolio: stability. That resilience especially during volatility and the ultra-low rate environment has proved useful enough for many investors.


Finsum: ETF trends have been amplified by the pandemic and will be enduring moving forward.

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