Jonathan Steinberg, chief executive of WisdomTree Investments, dismissed the recent bad press surrounding leveraged exchange traded funds as regulators look for something to blame for the recent bout of market volatility.
Steinberg remarked that leveraged and inverse ETFs are getting a “bad rap” at the Barclays Capital conference on Monday, reports Jessica Toonkel for Reuters. WisdomTree has $13 billion in assets under management and is the eighth largest ETF provider in the U.S.
“The rap for them [leveraged and inverse ETFs] is that they don’t deliver the long-term tracking of the index, but they never said they would,” Steinberg commented. “The other knock is that they have contributed to the volatility.”
Last week, leveraged ETFs came under fire following a report the Securities and Exchange Commission is looking into whether leveraged ETFs exacerbated the recent market volatility.
Steinberg brushed off the claim, stating that regulators are only “looking for a scapegoat for volatility.”
While WisdomTree does not offer its own line of leveraged ETFs, Steinberg believes that they are a “very tactical trade.”
“I have been on the road meeting hundreds and hundreds of advisers and investors and there is a very passionate and narrow universe for leveraged and inverse ETFs,” Steinberg said.
Max Chen contributed to this article.