The stock market's impressive rally may have paused in August, but inflows into exchange-traded funds showed no such slowdown. According to the latest data from FactSet, investors added $29.9 billion into U.S.-listed ETFs during the month, enough to break two key milestones.
The first was the annual inflows record from 2016. That former record was surpassed midmonth, when year-to-date inflows edged above $287.5 billion. Then just days ago, year-to-date inflows eclipsed another landmark, rising above $300 billion for the first time. The latest record as of today is $303.7 billion and counting.
To put that in perspective, last year at this time, inflows through the first eight months of the year totaled $143.2 billion. In other words, inflows this year are running at more than double last year's pace.
Inflows Across The Board
Shifting focus back to the month of August, investors distributed their money relatively evenly between the various ETF segments. U.S. equity ETFs, international equity ETFs and U.S. fixed-income ETFs had around $8 billion worth of inflows a piece.
At the same time, international fixed-income ETFs and commodity ETFs each had inflows of more than $1 billion. The biggest standout was perhaps the "inverse ETFs" segment, which garnered an impressive $2.1 billion worth of inflows, a big gain for the relatively niche group of products.
Inverse VIX And Gold In Favor
In terms of inflows, the usual suspects dominated the list. The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY), the iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (IVV) and the Vanguard FTSE Developed Markets ETF (VEA) took the top three spots, with creations of almost $2 billion or more during August.
The most unusual name on the top 10 was the ProShares Short VIX Short-Term Futures ETF (SVXY), with inflows of $907 million. Assets under management in the fund skyrocketed to $1.4 billion as investors used August's spike in volatility to bargain-hunt in the inverse-VIX ETF.
Two other noteworthy names on the top creations list were the Industrials Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLI) and the SPDR Gold Trust (GLD), each with inflows of more than $1 billion. Gold prices hit a new high for the year during August above $1,320 as the U.S. dollar slid to new lows.
Outflows From Sector ETFs
Meanwhile, the outflows list for August was chock full of sector funds. The Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLP), the Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLY), the Health Care Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLV) and the Financial Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLF) all had outflows ranging from $500 million to $1.4 billion.
For a full list of top inflows and outflows for August and the year-to-date period, see the tables below:
Top Gainers (August 2017)
|Ticker||Name||Issuer||Net Flows ($,mm)||AUM ($M)||% of AUM||YTD 2017 Net Flows($,M)|
|SPY||SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust||State Street Global Advisors||2,355.00||244,237.06||0.97%||-2,789.05|
|IVV||iShares Core S&P 500 ETF||BlackRock||2,107.46||123,680.70||1.73%||23,153.83|
|VEA||Vanguard FTSE Developed Markets ETF||Vanguard||1,966.62||60,159.03||3.38%||13,177.51|
|QQQ||PowerShares QQQ Trust||Invesco PowerShares||1,871.42||52,721.76||3.68%||1,739.85|
|IWM||iShares Russell 2000 ETF||BlackRock||1,850.50||36,199.81||5.39%||-3,011.24|
|AGG||iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF||BlackRock||1,306.63||50,110.03||2.68%||7,639.07|
|DIA||SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF Trust||State Street Global Advisors||1,245.23||17,678.78||7.58%||1,278.84|
|XLI||Industrial Select Sector SPDR Fund||State Street Global Advisors||1,073.51||11,567.65||10.23%||418.44|
|GLD||SPDR Gold Trust||State Street Global Advisors||1,027.45||34,336.07||3.08%||-45.46|
|SVXY||ProShares Short VIX Short-Term Futures ETF||ProShares||906.75||1,388.28||188.31%||952.89|
Top Gainers (Year-to-Date)
|Ticker||Name||Issuer||Net Flows ($,mm)||AUM ($M)||% of AUM||August 2017 Net Flows($,M)|
|IVV||iShares Core S&P 500 ETF||BlackRock||23,153.83||123,680.70||23.03%||2,107.46|
|IEFA||iShares Core MSCI EAFE ETF||BlackRock||14,468.06||33,428.16||76.31%||486.99|
|VEA||Vanguard FTSE Developed Markets ETF||Vanguard||13,177.51||60,159.03||28.05%||1,966.62|
|IEMG||iShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF||BlackRock||12,650.54||36,732.38||52.53%||828.14|
|LQD||iShares iBoxx $ Investment Grade Corporate Bond ETF||BlackRock||10,340.79||38,548.05||36.66%||712.32|
|EFA||iShares MSCI EAFE ETF||BlackRock||9,481.25||78,151.72||13.81%||0.00|
|VOO||Vanguard S&P 500 ETF||Vanguard||8,687.93||71,361.76||13.86%||-115.84|
|AGG||iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF||BlackRock||7,639.07||50,110.03||17.99%||1,306.63|
|VWO||Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets ETF||Vanguard||6,979.23||61,864.89||12.72%||853.49|
|VCIT||Vanguard Intermediate-Term Corporate Bond ETF||Vanguard||5,874.87||16,638.16||54.58%||694.28|