Asian buyers of structured-equity products, such as private banking clients, are becoming increasingly sector specific in selecting equity underlying, according to sales heads in the region. Joseph Chan, managing director of equity sales at Bear Stearns in Hong Kong, said over the last two years investors have become more comfortable with stock baskets and sector investments as opposed to indexes. Now they are also becoming more particular in their stock selections from well-defined sub-sections of the sector.
Bear Stearns recently executed a USD150 million-plus deal, offering exposure to a basket of six stocks linked to renewable energy. Chan said the attraction of a renewables basket was exposure to shares "reflecting a global demand for energy, but less affected by short term volatility in oil prices."