Steven Schoenfeld knows a thing or two about stock indexes as the chief investment officer of BlueStar Indexes and author of the book Active Index Investing. He spoke with John Lothian News editor-in-chief Jim Kharouf about his latest indexes based on Israeli companies and another on Israeli tech stocks. The first is called the BlueStar Israel Invest (BIGI), which is a comprehensive index on the top Israeli companies that are traded around the world.
The index was originally launched in 2011 to help investors understand the breadth and depth of firms based in Israel, but may be traded on top tier exchanges.
“People can do the traditional risk return analysis, and correlations with both other indexes for Israel, regional indexes like an emerging market index or European index, or global indexes,” he said. “Ultimately, the target audience is for investors, institutional investors – endowments, foundations and individuals – who have had a desire to invest in Israel but wanted to do so in a broad and diversified way.”
Schoenfeld argues that investors who invest in those companies only listed on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, are missing out on about $40 billion in market cap for firms listed on exchanges outside the country.
Schoenfeld has also developed a new index focused on Israel’s technology sector, which is among the largest in the world. BlueStar Israel Global Technology Index (BIGTech), features large, mid-cap and small-cap firms listed on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, plus those listed on other markets. Through September, BIGTech posted a 13.5 percent gain over the first three quarters of 2013, and was up 12.7 percent over the past five year period.
Schoenfeld said there is still much more room for indexes and index growth, despite critics who say the space has been covered.