Itaú to launch 2 new funds in 2012 to attract foreign investors

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The asset management arm of Brazil's Itaú Unibanco (NYSE: ITUB) is planning to launch two new investment funds next year to attract more foreign investors, local news agency Agência Estado reported.

One fund will focus on Brazilian sovereign debt and the other on corporate debt in Latin America. Foreign investors are looking to buy Brazilian debt due to the high benchmark interest rate, which is currently at 11.5%.

Foreign investors account for 10% of the bank's assets under management (AUM) of nearly US$200bn, and most are Japanese. The bank wants to raise this to 20%, according to the report.

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For 2012, the bank expects to increase AUM by 10%, the report said.

This year, Itaú's asset management arm attracted two sovereign wealth funds (SWF) as clients. By 2014, market estimates suggest that SWFs could have almost US$13tn in assets under management.