New York Life to Buy ETF Provider IndexIQ

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Consolidation in the industry for exchange-traded funds is heating up.

 New York Life Insurance said Thursday that will buy IndexIQ, a niche ETF provider specializing in hedge-fund like strategies, according to a press release[1].

IndexIQ commands about $1.3 billion in its stable of about a dozen ETFs, the most popular of which is the $954 million IQ Hedge Multi-Strategy Tracker ETF (QAI[2]). New York Life said it will market IndexIQ through its MainStay Investments business. The firm has been aggressively bolting on asset managers via acquisitions in recent years, including Dexia Asset Managemen[3]t. It’s also formed partnerships with fast-growing managers including Marketfield Asset Management[4].

New York Life’s move marks the second acquisition in the ETF industry in as many months. In October, Janus Capital Group (JNS[5]) bought VelocityShares, the $2.4 billion ETF provider best known for its exchange-traded notes linked to futures on the CBOE Volatility Index.

Thursday’s announcement follows previous reports[6] that bidders including Goldman Sachs Group (GS) were in the running to buy IndexIQ. It also underscores the urgency felt by asset managers to join the fast-growing, $2 trillion ETF industry.

Terms for the deal, expected to close in the first half of next year, were not disclosed.

Corrections and Amplification:

The third paragraph of this post was corrected to clarify MainStay’s relationship with Marketfield Asset Management.

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