JPMorgan aims global bond index at yield-hungry investors

October 3, 2016 5:36 PM EDT

A sign outside the headquarters of JP Morgan Chase & Co in New York, September 19, 2013. REUTERS/Mike Segar

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(Reuters) - JPMorgan Chase & Co (NYSE: JPM) on Monday said it was launching a global government bond index that will offer fund managers higher potential yields by including a larger percentage of emerging market bonds than traditional global bond indexes.

The index is called the JPM GBI aggregate diversified fund and is made up of both investment grade and high yield bonds, with an allocation of 80 percent developed market and 20 percent emerging market bonds.

Global bond indexes typically only comprise about 2 to 4 percent emerging market bonds because certain countries are excluded based on credit ratings.

JPMorgan said the new index is 94 percent comprised of investment grade credits with an average index rating of Aa3/AA-/AA- by Moody’s, Standard & Poor's and Fitch, respectively.

"This split is a better reflection of both outstanding debt stock in the global investable landscape and the increasing economic contribution of EM countries to global GDP," said Gloria Kim, head of J.P. Morgan Global Index Research Group, in a statement.

The allocation to the G3 currencies - the dollar, euro and Japanese yen - totals only 57 percent of the fund, as compared to 85 percent to 90 percent in traditional global government bond indices, analysts said.

The index has a weighted average yield of 1.35 percent, Kim said in the statement, and managers at JPMorgan see it as one of their "flagship" indices for the coming years.

The index does not exclude countries based on credit ratings but does exclude countries with capital controls.

JPMorgan offers around 20 benchmark indices. Its other flagship products include the JPMorgan EMBI index and GBI-emerging markets index.

(Reporting by Dion Rabouin; Editing by Andrew Hay)

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