SPY passes $250 billion AUM milestone

Oct 23rd, 2017 | By | Category: ETF and Index News

State Street Global AdvisorsSPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSE Arca: SPY), the first ETF to launch in the US, has hit more than $250 billion in assets under management.

SPY passes $250 billion AUM milestone

SSGA’s SPY ETF has passed $250 billion in assets under management (file image)

SPY appeared on the American Stock Exchange back in January 1993, and is currently the most actively traded security in the world, accounting for over a quarter of total ETF industry volume – roughly equal to the trading volume of the next 14 largest ETFs combined.

The fund, which crossed the $200bn threshold as recently as August 2016 and is by far the largest ETF globally, tracks the bellwether S&P 500 Index, one of the most widely followed benchmarks for the performance of the US equity market.

SPY’s latest milestone achievement has been driven by the upwards momentum in US equities – the S&P 500 has returned an impressive 15.2% year-to-date as ongoing discussions over tax and regulatory reform have caused investors to remain bullish.

This positive performance has driven further net inflows into US equity ETFs as investors followed the momentum of the market, helping already large funds to swell their assets even further. Inflows into US equity ETFs have outstripped all other ETF segments this year, with global investors piling in more than $110bn to September month-end, according to BlackRock data.

Perhaps surprisingly then, SPY has bucked the trend and actually recorded net outflows of approximately $6bn for the year, highlighting the impact of rivals iShares and Vanguard, who are increasingly looking to compete on fees.

The iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (NYSE Arca: IVV) has $131bn and the Vanguard S&P 500 Index ETF (NYSE Arca: VOO) has more than $75bn. Both funds feature on the top 10 largest ETF list. IVV and VOO charge 0.04% fees each; SPY costs more than double at 0.09%.

There are a number of ETFs listed in Europe providing exposure to the S&P 500 Index, several of which may be considered relative ‘giants’ for their market. The iShares Core S&P 500 UCITS ETF (LON: CSPX) and the Vanguard S&P 500 UCITS ETF (LON: VUSD) are the largest with $24.0bn and $19.7bn in assets respectively. They are also joint-second cheapest with fees of 0.07% each.

The accolade for cheapest S&P 500 ETF in Europe goes to the $2.8bn Source S&P 500 UCITS ETF (LON: SPXS), which costs just 0.05%.

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