2024 iShares Report on Investor Progress

Salim Ramji Jan 04, 2023

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • BlackRock’s Global Head of iShares and Index Investing details how iShares ETFs helped investors navigate the market volatility of 2023 by offering quality, selection, utility, and value.
  • In 2023, clients entrusted iShares with over $167 billion in new ETF and index mutual fund assets.1
  • iShares received over 550 Gold and Silver medals from Morningstar across our global ETF platform, more than twice our next competitor.2

At iShares, we are committed to offering the highest quality investments for the greatest number of people, delivering the best possible value.

The purpose of our fourth annual iShares Report on Investor Progress is to provide a sense of how we are doing on our commitments to you, our 43 million investors.3 I hope you find some facts here that provide you with glimmers of optimism and renewed confidence to keep investing for the long term.

Markets continued to challenge even the most committed optimists for much of 2023, with higher interest rates, an uncertain economic outlook, and geopolitical turmoil all leading to heightened volatility. Many savers sought refuge in cash, in record amounts, in search of stable yields.4 But investors globally also continued to turn to ETFs, pouring over $800 billion into ETFs industry-wide in 2023 and benefiting from strong equity and fixed income markets globally, especially toward the end of the year.5

 I think more people are turning to ETFs because they are empowering – they provide choices for a range of buyers – from first-time investors to professional wealth and asset managers – to choose how they navigate investing in a way that’s convenient for them. I sometimes think of ETFs like cars – you can pick the right vehicle for you to get to your destination however you choose. I bought my first car, a used 1980s Volkswagen, because it was relatively affordable and built to last. I bought my first ETF (our iShares Core S&P 500) years later for the same reason.

The remarkable thing about iShares ETFs, though, is that they’re more than a vehicle; similar to other technologies, quality and selection have increased even as overall costs have come down.6

Today, you can access over 1,400 iShares globally, a 50% increase since 2019, from our low-cost Core ETFs used to build long-term portfolios, to our Bond ETFs that investors use to access hundreds of slices of the bond market efficiently, to our Active, and Factor ETFs that have the potential to outperform market-cap benchmarks, to our Precision ETF range that enables access to an array of countries, sectors, and commodities.7 The quality and selection of iShares ETFs is a great equalizer because it enables individuals to invest in ways that were once exclusively for professionals.

I believe people make the decision to get on the road from saving to investing because they hope for a better future and believe long-term financial security and wealth creation is within their reach. In the past five years, tens of millions of people indicated they shared this belief by doubling the amount of assets they entrust to our iShares ETFs.8 Our goal is to be relentless in making the on-ramps easier and in offering you an array of convenient routes to help bring your investment destination within view.

Video 02:23

REPORT AT A GLANCE

Global Head of ETFs and Index Investments Salim Ramji discusses iShares' commitment to making investing more affordable and accessible for all investors, while delivering best-in-class ETF performance and innovation.

Video for Salim Ramji for the Investor Progress Report. Note that video was recorded and this is the transcript.

Hi, I'm Salim Ramji, the global head of iShares ETF and Index Investing here at BlackRock.

We understand that this past year has been filled with uncertainty for you and for investors all over the world. The ups and downs of the market, the rises in interest rates have prompted many savers to remain in cash. And while having some cash in your portfolio is a good thing to build a buffer, the key to building long term wealth is staying invested across all markets and building a well-diversified portfolio.

That's why here at iShares, we are committed to making investing more accessible and more affordable for everyone. Whether you're a first-time saver, taking your first steps into the world of investing or you've been a market professional for decades, our ETFs are designed to meet the highest standards. It starts with our unwavering commitment to make sure that our ETFs deliver the performance that you expect.

We do this across our 1400 ETFs using our cutting-edge Aladdin technology and an exceptional team of portfolio managers. Because there's nothing passive about how we manage our ETFs. We've been expanding well beyond our choices in indexation and now offer 35 different active ETF choices. A great example is our iShares LifePath target date ETFs.

With just $25 you can begin your journey to saving for retirement.

And we prioritize affordability in every aspect of what we do. Using our scale to lower your fees and your minimum investments. You can find iShares commission-free on more than 100 different platforms across the United States and Europe.

Regardless of where you are in your investing journey, iShares is there for you, and the 43 million people around the world who entrust us with their money every step of the way.Our fourth annual Investor Progress Report highlights how iShares ETFs are built to deliver the best quality, the most access, and the greatest value for all investors.

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Salim Ramji

Salim Ramji

Global Head of iShares and Index Investing at BlackRock

In Salim’s two decades in and around asset management he has focused on making investing easier, more affordable, and more convenient for more people.

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