ETF Watch: John Hancock Eyes Int’l Stocks

The firm’s latest filing details plans for a smart-beta developed-market ETF.
Reviewed by: Staff
Edited by: Staff

John Hancock, a well-known mutual fund manager boasting more than $80 billion in assets, is planning to expand its still-young-but-growing footprint in the ETF space.

The firm, which launched its first six funds last fall and has 11 ETFs in the market today with combined assets of about $575 million, has put into registration a smart-beta fund that would invest in developed-market stocks excluding the U.S. and Canada.

The John Hancock Multifactor Developed International ETF would track a proprietary index that holds companies with market capitalization at the top of their respective countries, and that are “associated with developed markets outside the U.S. and Canada,” according to the filing.

“The selection and weighting of securities in the Index involves a rules-based process that may sometimes be referred to as multifactor investing, factor-based investing, strategic beta, or smart beta. With respect to each country, securities are classified according to their market capitalization, relative price, and profitability,” the filing said.

The new ETF would join at least 23 other ETFs that slice and dice the developed-market equity space through a multifactor lens. It would also join the firm’s 11 U.S. sector-focused equity ETFs, all of which are also multifactor strategies.

The prospectus did not disclose fees or ticker.

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