European ETF flows slow in Q2 amid EU Referendum

Jul 19th, 2016 | By | Category: ETF and Index News

The European exchange-traded fund market netted nearly €8bn of new money in the second quarter of this year helping boost assets under management to €482.4bn – a 4.2% increase on the first quarter. This was despite the second quarter of the year being an 18% decline from the €11bn of net inflows registered in the first quarter, according to data from Morningstar.

High yield bond ETFs influential in relieving market stress, finds Morningstar

Jose Garcia-Zarate, Associate Director of Passive Strategies Research at Morningstar

Investors were sitting tight amid market uncertainty or seeking out safe haven protection over the last three months with the majority of net new money flowing into fixed income (€6.75bn) and commodities – mostly gold – (€3.3bn).  Equities continued to struggle with investors pulling their money out, to the tune of €2.7bn in April and May, but June bucked the trend with net inflows reaching €1.2bn, when the EU Referendum taking place.

Jose Garcia-Zarate, Associate Director of Passive Strategies Research for Morningstar, said in a statement: “Given the general investment environment, we see these figures in a positive light. Investors had a tough time in the second quarter of 2016. Most prominently, the uncertainty over the potential result—and implications—of the UK’s referendum on European Union membership warranted a cautious approach to investing. The two most commonly adopted strategies were either to sit tight and wait to see the actual outcome of this key risk event, or to seek shelter in presumed safe havens.”

In other sectors, smart beta ETFs attracted €2.16bn of net inflows in the second quarter, which accounted for 27% of the total European ETF market.

The first half of the year recorded its best half-yearly outcome on record for European exchange-traded products providing exposure to commodities, surpassing the figures seen during the eurozone debt crisis in 2012.

iShares continues to gather most flow at €5.25bn, while db X-trackers and Lyxor have lost market share to competitors.

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