Assets in Barclays’ iShares ETFs in Asia ex-Japan rose by 43.7% in 2008 to $4.3 billion and globally, iShares took in $89 billion in new assets, up 27% from inflows of $70 billion in 2007.

“Investors around the world, including those in Asia, are clearly embracing ETFs,” said Nick Good, chief executive officer of iShares Asia-Pacific. “The current volatile market has made investors more concerned with knowing exactly what they own and with investing in products which they can trade easily, whenever they want [in order to manage risk]. Investors in Asia are increasingly aware of the benefits of ETFs. With transparency and diversification expected to be strong themes in 2009, iShares will continue to provide products to meet investors’ needs in the region.”

The number of ETFs traded in 2008 rose 32.5% to $80.4 billion, Barclays also reported. The firm expects total assets in ETFs to rise from $711 billion at the end of 2008 to $1 trillion in 2009 and $2 trillion by 2011.

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