Invesco PowerShares came to Newport Beach, CA, yesterday for an installment of PowerShares University, a road show that gives exchange traded fund (ETF) investors, asset managers and financial industry pros insight into the world of ETFs.

PowerShares senior vice president and national sales manager Bobby Brooks kicked things off by relaying a conversation he recently had with an advisor about how the advisory business is changing. The advisor noted four key trends taking place in the advisory business:

  • Advisors are taking back control of their client portfolios rather than farming out management
  • They’re moving from a largely buy-and-hold model to a more tactical one
  • They’re increasingly managing for inflation; ETFs offer many tools for this
  • Money is in transition; many high-net worth individuals are looking for new advisors and it’s never been a better time to find new clients

PowerShares Managing Director Ben Fulton shared statistical evidence of the growth of the ETF industry and what we might expect to see coming down the pike.

Could this be because of the most recent bear market, which decimated retirement portfolios and stuck a pin in the notion of buy-and-hold? It could be. We’re seeing more economic downturns that most investors can little afford to withstand by using a buy-and-hold approach. The future is all about tactical management, and ETFs are one of the most versatile tools to use in this approach.

Brooks’ address was followed up with other discussions led by a team of experts. Particularly interesting was one by John Browning, PowerShares’ portfolio manager, on the risks, rewards and challenges of emerging markets, such as China, India and Brazil. While these countries all boast the potential for more growth than has already been witnessed, emerging markets face struggles that could interrupt or delay growth, such as corrupt governments and a lack of infrastructure in certain regions.

These events are not only a great way to learn about the fund industry, it’s an excellent way to meet ETF providers, ask them questions directly and learn about their product lines in more detail. Here’s our list of upcoming conferences. We update it frequently, so be sure to check back so you don’t miss that next great educational opportunity!

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.