The Rise of FlexShares ETFs

Northern Trust’s (NasdaqGS: NTRS) FlexShares unit is not the oldest issuer of exchange traded funds. Rather, it is one of the newer kids on the ETF block.

The oldest members of the FlexShares lineup, a group that includes the FlexShares Morningstar U.S. Market Factor Tilt Index ETF (NYSEArca: TILT) and the FlexShares Morningstar Global Upstream Natural Resource Index Fund (NYSEArca: GUNR), will not turn three until September. Yet FlexShares has been able to leverage of a lineup currently comprised of just 15 ETFs into almost $7.4 billion in assets under management. [FlexShares Introduces Global Real Estate ETF]

GUNR isone of the more unique products in the space. It serves as a very good long-term hedge for inflation in a portfolio,” said said Shundrawn A. Thomas, global head of Northern Trust’s ETFs, in an interview with Marie Beerens of Investor’s Business Daily.

With $2.8 billion in assets under management, GUNR is one of the largest FlexShares ETFs. One of the firm’s newest additions, the FlexShares STOXX Global Broad Infrastructure Index Fund (NYSEArca: NFRA), debuted in October and already has $116.2 million in assets.

When you look at infrastructure companies, they track really well to inflation. The reason in part being when you think about some of the underlying investments, such as a road or a toll bridge, often the way that they earn their revenues are tied to inflation-pegged metrics, like CPI and the like,” Thomas told IBD. [Spotlight on Global Infrastructure ETF]