Fund Product, Company and Regulatory Updates as at 2 May 2017

Product Updates

Omega Global Investors launches equity income fund
Omega has launched a new equity income fund, being run by John Moore. 

VanEck launching smart beta bond ETF
In an Australian first, VanEck is setting up a smart beta Australian fixed income exchange-traded fund (ETF) on the ASX. The VanEck Vectors Australian Corporate Bond Plus ETF tracks the Markit iBoxx AUD Corporates Yield Plus Index, which targets the top 50 per cent of the highest yielding Australian issued corporate bonds. 

Macquarie Wrap adds L1 Capital Long Short Fund
L1 Capital's Long Short Fund has been added to Macquarie's investment and super wrap menu. 

PIMCO launches new ESG bond fund
PIMCO is launching its first environmental, social and governance (ESG) screened global bond fund in Australia. The fund excludes companies that do not meet PIMCO's ESG standards, and favours companies with high ESG standards. PIMCO will be actively engaging with companies to ensure compliance. 

ANZ launches tech ETF
ANZ ETFS Morningstar Global Technology ETF tracks the Morningstar Developed Markets Technology Moat Focus Index - 32 stocks that include some major tech players like Google, Apple and Microsoft. 

ESG risk tool launch
MSCI has released a new tool to assess ESG metrics of over 8,000 companies globally. The tool looks at geographic exposure, chemical safety regulations, climate, corruption, instability, workplace safety, work stoppages and privacy laws. 

Company Updates

Sunsuper and Kinetic Super to merge
Kinetic Super is to merge with Sunsuper, forming a $45 billion, 1.3 million member fund. Kinetic super brings $3 billion of funds to the table. 

Henderson Group and Janus Capital Group merger
After an Extraordinary General Meeting, a merger was recommended between Henderson Group and Janus Capital Group and accepted by shareholders. The deal is expected to be finalised by 30 May 2017. 

LGS strengthens ESG, reinstates investment restrictions
Local Government Super (LGS) has reinstated its restrictions on nuclear energy and uranium investments. The restrictions were removed for some areas of the nuclear industry in 2014, however now any company that derives more than 10 per cent of its revenue from nuclear or uranium-based activities is off the investment list. The change is due to rapid expansion into the renewable energy sector and no growth in the nuclear space. 

Regulatory Updates

Australia Wealth Capital AFSL suspended
ASIC has suspended the Australian Financial Services (AFS) licence of Australia Wealth Capital Group until October 2017 due to key obligation noncompliance. 

ASIC signs fintech agreement with Indonesia
Australian and Indonesian financial services regulators have signed an agreement to cooperate with fintech advancements and innovations. The agreement is to share more information on emerging market trends and regulatory issues arising from speedy growth in the industry. Indonesia has a fast-growing tech sector, in particular within payments and money transfers. 

DD&D Securities AFSL cancelled
ASIC has cancelled the AFSL of DD&D Securities Ltd for failing to comply with key obligations. The cancellation was in effect from 5 April 2017. DD&D Securities is the responsible entity for Dwyers Managed Investments, a mortgage scheme operating in regional Victoria. 

First Super stops private equity investments
First Super has halted new investments in its private equity program, with a review underway. The fund has cited concerns regarding poor labour practices in some companies in its private equity funds, which may result in the portfolio being wound up.