iShares Thematics ETFs

Q1 2018 Thematic Thinking - an overview

Rob Powell
Rob Powell
Investment Strategy
April 2018

What is Thematic Thinking?

  • Thematic Thinking is a quarterly commentary on the performance of the iShares Thematic ETF range.
  • iShares Thematic ETFs are designed to offer exposure to specific themes that emerge from ‘megatrends’, the powerful forces that could transform the global economy, business and society.

Capital at risk. All financial investments involve an element of risk. Therefore, the value of the investment and the income from it will vary and the initial investment amount cannot be guaranteed.

Why not download Thematic Thinking today? And learn:

  • How are BlackRock’s megatrend themes developing?
  • What may have driven index performance in Q1?
  • How we compare each thematic index’s performance vs. MSCI ACWI
  • About top and bottom performers in each index and their ‘level-6’ categories
  • About events which may have driven index performance in Q1

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iSTOXX® FactSet Thematic indices versus MSCI ACWI

20132014201520162017
iSTOXX FactSet Automation & Robotics 24.8% 6.8% -9.3% 18.1% 47.0%
iSTOXX FactSet Breakthrough Healthcare 28.7% 12.6% 27.6%% -6.7%% 35.4%
iSTOXX FactSet Ageing Population 32.7% 9.0% 5.3% 2.6% 21.7%
iSTOXX FactSet Digitalisation 41.7% 0.1% 2.7% 3.8% 27.9%

The figures shown relate to past performance. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of current or future results and should not be the sole factor of consideration when selecting a product or strategy.

Source: Bloomberg, as at 31 March 2018. All iSTOXX® indices referenced in this paper are Net Total Return and priced in USD. Index data are for illustrative purposes only and do not represent actual iShares Fund performance. Indices are unmanaged and cannot be invested in directly. Past performance does not guarantee future results. Performance returns do not reflect any management fees, transaction costs or expenses. This analysis contains back-tested index data. Data for time periods prior to the index inception date is hypothetical and is provided for informational purposes only to indicate historical performance had the index been available over the relevant time period.

Thematic Investing at a glance


Automation and robotics

Relevant iShares ETF
iShares Automation and Robotics UCITS ETF RBOT
Q1 net total return (USD) vs MSCI ACWI index +5.19%
  • New OECD research suggests 14% of all jobs to be automated in coming years
  • Tragic Uber self driving car death leads to pause in Autonomous Vehicle (AV) development
  • Google CEO Pichai: AI more important than humanity’s mastery of fire


Breakthrough healthcare

Relevant iShares ETF
iShares Healthcare Innovation UCITS ETF HEAL
Q1 net total return (USD) vs MSCI ACWI index +11.58%
  • M&A a continuing theme among innovative healthcare companies
  • Forbes: Global digital healthcare market forecast to reach $536.6 billion by the end of 2025
  • Asian firms dominate top performers in the index


Ageing population

Relevant iShares ETF
iShares Ageing Population UCITS ETF AGED
Q1 net total return (USD) vs MSCI ACWI index +1.24%
  • Oxford institute of population ageing estimates that absolute number of elderly in commonwealth countries to increase by 100% over next 25 years
  • ECB cites ageing population as reason to keep rates lower for longer
  • World Bank: More than 84 per cent of global GDP is currently produced by countries whose working age population shares are expected to shrink by 2030


Digitalisation

Relevant iShares ETF
iShares Digitalisation UCITS ETF DGTL
Q1 net total return (USD) vs MSCI ACWI index +7.87%

Source: Bloomberg, as at 31 March 2018. All iSTOXX® indices referenced in this paper are Net Total Return and priced in USD. Index data are for illustrative purposes only and do not represent actual iShares Fund performance. Indices are unmanaged and cannot be invested in directly. Past performance does not guarantee future results. Performance returns do not reflect any management fees, transaction costs or expenses. This analysis contains back-tested index data. Data for time periods prior to the index inception date is hypothetical and is provided for informational purposes only to indicate historical performance had the index been available over the relevant time period.

  • Facebook shares drop following Cambridge Analytica Scandal
  • President Trump attacks Amazon’s business model
  • U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres calls for global rules to minimize the impact of cyber warfare

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This material is not intended to be relied upon as a forecast, research or investment advice, and is not a recommendation, offer or solicitation to buy or sell any financial instrument or product or to adopt any investment strategy. Unless otherwise stated, all data in this document is sourced from Bloomberg as at 31 March 2018.