According to the 2019 U.S. Greenwich Associates Institutional ETF Adoption and Usage study, 40% of current equity ETF investors and 42% of existing bond ETF investors plan to increase ETF allocations in the coming year. Insurance respondents stated “We use ETFs for cash management, because they’re just easier to trade,” and “We feel most active managers haven’t been able to beat their benchmarks, so we think the ETFs offer a lower cost alternative and we get the performance of the benchmark”.*

* Source: 2019 U.S. Greenwich Associates Institutional ETF Adoption and Usage study

The big shift: ETFs at the cornerstone of insurance equity portfolios

BlackRock's latest paper for insurance companies examines the growing role public equities play in investment portfolios.

Volatility accelerates adoption of fixed income ETFs by insurers

See how insurance companies turned to fixed income ETFs during the COVID crisis to help navigate the most challenging markets since the Global Financial Crisis.

* Source: SNL Financial, 2018

Primed for Growth: Bond ETFs and the path to $2 trillion

Bond exchange traded funds (ETFs) are transforming how investors can access fixed income. BlackRock believes that global bond ETF assets are well positioned to double, to $2 trillion, by the end of 2024.* This paper highlights four key trends that BlackRock believes will drive this growth.

* BlackRock (as of June 2019)

iShares NAIC-designated ETFs

iShares offers around 70 National Association of Insurance Commissioners (“NAIC”) designated fixed income ETFs.*

NAIC-designated ETFs may help insurers:

  • By allowing more favorable Risk-Based Capital (“RBC”) treatment
  • By allowing them to consider ETFs as “Long-term Bond Issuer Obligations” as opposed to “Common Stock” on the statutory (Schedule D) filings
  • Maintain lower capital requirements to back investments

View NAIC-designated funds

* The NAIC does not endorse or recommend any securities or products, including iShares ETFs. NAIC designations are issued for specific regulatory purposes and these designations are not equivalent to credit ratings issued by nationally recognizedstatistical rating organizations. NAIC designations are suitable only for NAIC members. For additional information, please refer to

“Systematic Value” calculation for fixed income ETFs

The Systematic Valuation method, as recently adopted by the NAIC, provides a solution that is both relatively simple to calculate and auditable.

Systematic Value Methodology for FI ETFs

In order to examine how the Systematic Value approach would work over time, a hypothetical example using the iShares investment grade corporate bond is explored.