Daily ETF Watch: Global ETF AUM Tops $3T

Flows are accelerating as total global ETF assets topped $3 trillion in May.

Reviewed by: Heather Bell
Edited by: Heather Bell

Total global assets under management in exchange-traded products topped $3 trillion for the first time at the end of May and sooner than had been expected, according to data compiled by ETFGI, the London-based ETF research and consultancy firm headed by longtime ETF analyst Deborah Fuhr.


“The increasing rate of asset growth illustrates how ETFs have been embraced as an investment solution by institutional investors, financial advisors and retail investors around the world,” Fuhr said today in a press release.


Fuhr noted that it took the global ETP industry 19 years to reach $1 trillion in assets under management; four more years to reach $2 trillion and just two more years to reach $3 trillion.


Total global ETP inflows in May amounted to $19 billion, with Vanguard gathering the most among fund sponsors, at $5.23 billion. Vanguard was followed by Huatai-PB, with $3.45 billion; WisdomTree had $1.69 billion; and First Trust had $1.64 billion.


The actual asset total, including both ETFs and other ETPs at the end of May, was $3.015 trillion.  


ARK To Expand Offerings

ARK Investment Management, which rolled out four actively managed innovation-focused ETFs in the fourth quarter of last year, has just filed a brand-new exemptive relief request covering a wide range of passively managed ETF possibilities.


The filing represents a “standard” list of choices, including domestic and international equity and fixed-income ETFs; funds of funds; self-indexed funds and long/short or 130/30 funds. It notes that the initial funds will be equity funds that, similar to the firm’s existing ETFs, will target the theme of disruptive innovation.


On its website, ARK defines disruptive innovation as “the introduction of a technologically enabled new product or service to a market by creating simplicity and accessibility while driving down costs.” The four active funds that it launched are as follows:



The funds all together have a little more than $41 million in assets under management. Given that each charges an expense ratio of 0.95 percent, or $95 for each $10,000 invested, index-based funds may be a way for the firm to provide access to its strategies at a lower price point.



Heather Bell is a former managing editor of etf.com. She has also held editorial positions at Dow Jones Indexes and Lehman Brothers. Bell is a graduate of Dartmouth college and resides in the Denver area with her two dogs.