14 July 2001
iShares public limited company
Amendments to benchmark index, fund name, base currency and price per share
Following the successful launch of the iFTSE ExUK fund (the 'Fund') in
December 2000, the directors of iShares plc (the 'Directors') wish to inform
investors of the following proposed changes relating to the Fund, subject to
regulatory approval by the Central Bank of Ireland:
The Fund, which currently tracks the FTSE ExUK 100 Index, is going to change
its benchmark to track the FTSE Euro 100 Index. The FTSE Euro 100 Index
(based on the previously published FTSE Eurobloc 100 Index) is a more
suitable index that covers only Eurozone countries. The primary changes for
the Fund will be that companies from Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland
will not be considered for inclusion in the index.
Fund name change
On the same date that the benchmark index change is effected, the Fund will
change its name to the 'iFTSE Euro 100'.
Change of base currency
For administration purposes, the Fund will change its base currency from
sterling to euros. The Fund will track the FTSE Euro 100 Index in euro terms,
although prices for the Fund will ultimately be quoted both in sterling and
Price per share change
When the Fund was launched in December 2000, the price of one share was 1/100
of the index level. The share price has since moved in line with the index
(as it was designed to do) and the price of one share still represents
approximately 1/100 of the index level today - the index level stood at
1,667.22 and the share price was at £16.24 as at 5 July 2001.
The Directors feel this is an important feature for investors as it allows
them to see the fund tracking the index. However, when the benchmark is
changed to the FTSE Euro 100 Index the existing share price will no longer
represent 1/100 of the new index level.
The Directors therefore intend to change the price per share to represent
1/100 of the FTSE Euro 100 Index level in euro terms.
It is anticipated that the FTSE Euro 100 Index level will be lower than the
FTSE ExUK 100 Index level when the index change takes place and that the
price per share will therefore decrease. To compensate for this price per
share decrease the Directors will issue additional shares to all existing
holders (the 'bonus issue'), which will ensure that the value of their
holding in the Fund is unaffected by this change.
The benchmark index and fund name change will take place immediately
following regulatory approval and a date for the bonus issue will be fixed at