Profile: WisdomTree Investments Inc (WETF.OQ)
WisdomTree Investments, Inc. is an asset management company that focuses on exchange-traded funds (ETFs). The Company’s family of ETF includes both fundamentally weighted funds that track its own indexes, and actively managed funds. It distributes its ETFs through all channels within the asset management industry, including brokerage firms, registered investment advisors, institutional investors, private wealth managers and discount brokers. As of December 31, 2011, the Company offered a family of 48 ETFs, which included 34 international and domestic equity ETFs, seven currency ETFs, five international fixed income ETFs and two alternative strategy ETFs.
The Company offers equity ETFs covering the United States, international developed and emerging markets. These ETFs offer access to the securities of large, mid and small-cap companies, companies located in the United States, developed markets and emerging markets, as well as companies in particular market sectors, including basic materials, energy, utilities and real estate. Its equity ETFs track its own fundamentally weighted indexes.
The Company offers currency ETFs that provide investors with exposure to developed and emerging market currencies, including the Chinese Yuan, the Brazilian Real and the Japanese Yen. Currency ETFs invest in the United States money market securities, forward currency contracts and swaps and seek to achieve the total returns reflective of both money market rates in selected countries available to foreign investors and changes to the value of these currencies relative to the United States dollar.
International Fixed Income ETFs
In August 2010, the Company launched an ETF that invests in a range of local debt denominated in the currencies of emerging market countries and in March 2011, it launched an ETF that invests in local debt denominated in the currencies of Asia Pacific ex-Japan countries. In March 2012, the Company launched an emerging markets corporate bond ETF.
Alternative Strategy ETFs
In January 2011, the Company launched the managed futures strategy ETF. This fund seeks to achieve positive returns in rising or falling markets that are not directly correlated to broad market equity or fixed income returns. In July 2011, it launched a global real return ETF. This fund seeks total returns (capital appreciation plus income) that exceed the rate of inflation over long-term investment horizons. This fund combines domestic and global inflation-linked bonds with commodity strategies and gold exposure.
Index Based ETFs
Its equity ETFs seek to track the Company’s own fundamentally weighted indexes. Most of today’s ETFs track market capitalization weighted indexes and most of these indexes are licensed from third parties by ETF sponsors. The Company has developed fundamentally weighted indexes that weight companies by a measure of fundamental value. The Company benchmarks its fundamentally weighted indexes against traditional market capitalization-weighted indexes designed to track similar companies, sectors, regions or exposure.
Actively Managed ETFs
The Company’s actively managed ETFs include its currency, international fixed income and alternative strategy ETFs. The securities purchased and sold by its ETFs include the United States and foreign equities, forward currency contracts and the United States and foreign debt instruments. In addition, the Company enters into derivative transactions, in particular the United States-listed futures contracts, non-deliverable currency forward contracts, and total return swap agreements in order to gain exposure to commodities, foreign currencies, and interest rates. The exchanges these securities trade on include all the exchanges worldwide.
The Company competes with Vanguard, Charles Schwab, iShares and FocusShares (through Scottrade Inc.).
WisdomTree Investments Inc
21st Floor, 380 Madison Avenue
NEW YORK NY 10017