8th Annual Inside ETFs Ends With A Bang

January 29, 2015

 

The 8th annual Inside ETFs conference ended on Wednesday with a keynote address from Meredith Whitney, the star analyst who brought Citigroup to its knees when she told the world that the huge bank’s balance sheet was dangerously loaded up with subprime mortgage debt.

 

While the financial crisis has yet to fully fade into the rearview mirror, the vibrant atmosphere at Inside ETFs this week suggests an economy that’s clearly on the mend and an ETF industry that’s red hot. Total U.S.-listed ETF assets are now at more than $2 trillion, and luminaries far and wide attended the conference to rub elbows, do business and, not least, party.

 

Apart from Whitney, who spoke about the U.S. manufacturing renaissance, the four-day event held at the Diplomat Resort & Spa in Hollywood, Florida, was graced with various and sundry stars in and out of the investment industry. A total of 1,900 people attended Inside ETFs this year, 60 percent of them financial advisors.

 

CNBC’s Bob Pisani parked himself and his TV entourage at the buzzing hotel for much of the event, interviewing people such as fixed-income investing superstar Jeffrey Gundlach. Apart from the bustling exhibitors’ hall, the event is organized around a series of panel discussions on hot ETF- and indexing-industry topics such as “smart beta” and the macro outlook.

 

The entertainment quality at the conference was unusually high, beginning with Tito Puente Jr. serving up jazzy riffs of salsa music, and featuring rival politicos Karl Rove and James Carville trading jabs in a thoroughly entertaining hour-long debate moderated with the lightest of touches by none other than Bob Pisani himself.

 

Following are links to some of the highlights of Inside ETFs, which is set to take place at the same South Florida venue in 2016:

 

 

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