UK investors remain sceptical about swap-based ETFs

The vast majority of UK investors remain unconvinced about using synthetic ETFs, says a survey by Morningstar.

According to the survey, 89% of UK investors prefer physically replicated exchange traded funds (ETFs) over synthetic replications funds.

Morningstar’s fourth online survey of UK investors polled 181 respondents into the appetite, understanding and use of ETFs.

Ben Johnson, Morningstar’s director of European ETF research, said: “Despite the efforts made by providers of synthetic replication ETFs to improve the level of transparency and investor protection in their product lineups, respondents remain wary of swap-based ETFs.

“This is despite the ongoing conversation around counterparty risk recently shifting focus to highlight those risks arising from securities lending within physical replication ETFs.

“Clearly, despite the many benefits around low cost and ease of tradability, there is still some way to go in providing investors will all the information and transparency they need to feel comfortable with ETFs as a larger component in their portfolio.”

Other findings highlighted the importance of low costs to ETF investors, with 89% of current ETF investors and 96% of prospective users citing ETFs’ low costs as being either a “very important” or “important” attribute. More than half of respondents already invested via ETFs, with the remainder still familiarising themselves with these new vehicles. 

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