Index licensing fees: heading for a fall?

Fee fighters

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Index providers tend to charge companies wishing to use their indexes licensing fees based on assets under management (AUM), which means the bigger the exchange-traded fund (ETF), the greater is the revenue from fees that goes to the index provider. And with the total volume of ETFs in existence now in excess of $2 trillion, some market participants believe index firms have never had it so good and are questioning the rationale behind the fee structures.

"The AUM-based model makes no economic se

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