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Barclays Stockbrokers Clients Increase ETF Holdings in ISAS and SIPPS

  • Almost half (48%) of client ETF holdings are held within Investment ISAs
  • 18% of SIPP accounts hold ETFs
  • ETF clients seek exposure to FTSE, S&P 500 and gold

Barclays Stockbrokers clients investing in ETFs are making the most of the tax free benefits on offer for their investments. The UK’s largest execution-only retail broker found that nearly half (48%) of all clients’ ETF holdings are held in an ISA wrapper, (up two per cent from the same time in 2011 - 46%). Meanwhile, 18% of client SIPP accounts hold ETFs.

Of all ETFs held in ISAs as well as those held in SIPPs at the end of February 2012, the most popular was the iShares FTSE 100 fund. This remains unchanged from the same period in February 2011.

Barclays Stockbrokers found that clients holding ETFs in an ISA were seeking further exposure to the iShares S&P 500, which took fourth place in February 2012, up two places from the previous year. Clients were also increasing their holdings in gold; ETFS Physical Gold (USD) moved up three places to six, and ETFS Physical Gold (GBP) also made an appearance in the top ten in 2012.

Catherine Penney, Product Manager, Barclays Stockbrokers, said: “There is a clear trend of our clients using ETFs to gain exposure to the UK and the US and as the analysis shows, they are also seeking to increase their holdings in commodities such as the ETFS Physical Gold (USD).

“ETFs are an effective and accessible investment vehicle to capture short-term market movements, as well being used as part of investors longer term portfolio construction and are a simple, transparent and flexible addition to a balanced investment portfolio. As the end of the current tax year looms, our clients are taking full advantage of the tax free allowances available through both ISAs and SIPPs when investing in products such as ETFs.”