ETF INVESTOR OF THE YEAR
WINNER: Newfound Research
Look, we get it. This is a weird category. But the ETF industry has evolved so fast, that one year’s “ETF strategist” is another’s “TAMP mentor.”
The bottom line is that in between the manufacturers (the issuers) and the consumers (all of us investors) there exists a layer of portfolio managers, advisors, institutions and influencers who provide insight to the rest of us. The nominees represent the diversity of that definition: advisors, robo advisors and investment managers, who all touch the public in some way.
Newfound Research, this year’s returning 2016 champion, continues a tradition of not only doing right by its clients, but anyone willing to tune their TV or click on a link. To name names, co-founder and CIO Corey Hoffstein has been featured everywhere, from the pages of Barron’s to the air of CNBC to the digital realm, with Corey’s (too infrequent!) “Flirting with Models” podcast.
In everything it does, Newfound is bringing a message of rational investing to every kind of investor.
ETF LAW FIRM OF THE YEAR
WINNER: Stradley Ronon
While issuer CEOs may get the TV coverage, the real innovations in ETFs often come from the attorneys who figure out new and inventive ways to package exposures. After all, the very first ETF was as much a product of legal wrangling as it was investment management.
This year’s finalists range from the enormous, with over 1,000 attorneys, to the more boutique. This year’s winner, Stradley Ronon, fits in the latter category (although with 200 attorneys, it’s hardly small).
Led by the highly visible and universally respected Michael Mundt, Stradley Ronon’s ETF work spans all of the major issues facing the ETF market today, from helping active managers enter the space to working with the innovators behind several proposed nontransparent structures.
It’s often in the middle of the industry’s biggest news stories—like client Invesco’s acquisition of Oppenheimer’s and Guggenheim’s ETF businesses. Commenters repeatedly highlighted the value of their Stradley Ronon relationship in getting them to market quickly and efficiently.