Int'l Equity ETFs Fuel $20B In Weekly Inflows

The MSCI Emerging Markets Index hit a record high this week, leading investors to plow billions into international equity ETFs.

Senior ETF Analyst
Reviewed by: Sumit Roy
Edited by: Sumit Roy

Two weeks into the new year and ETF inflows are mirroring last year's torrid pace. Over the past week, investors added $20.1 billion to U.S.-listed ETFs. That brings year-to-date inflows up to $36.9 billion, just a tad ahead of the $35.2 billion seen at this same time a year ago.

This week's data, which measures the week ending Thursday, Jan. 14, showed the majority of new money heading into international equity ETFs. That's not something you see very often. 

Led by the iShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (IEMG), investors added $13.8 billion to international equity ETFs. That outpaced the $5.6 billion that went into U.S. fixed income ETFs and the $1.3 billion that went into U.S. equity ETFs.

Perhaps investors see value in international stocks, which haven't rallied nearly as much as their U.S. counterparts. Until this week, the MSCI Emerging Markets Index, which is tracked by the aforementioned IEMG, hadn't hit a new high since 2007. That 13-year-old peak was finally broken this week, which may have spurred some of the interest in IEMG and other international equity ETFs.

ARK ETFs On Fire 

In addition to IEMG, another standout on the weekly inflows list is the ARK Innovation ETF (ARKK). One of 2020's biggest winners, ARKK continues to rocket higher in 2021, with a gain of 15% already in the first two weeks of the year. 

Naturally, that's attracted the attention of investors, who plowed $1.3 billion into the fund over the past week and $1.7 billion into the fund since the start of the year. Assets under management in the ETF now stand at nearly $22 billion, compared to just $2 billion a year ago. 

ARK's other funds have been popular as well. The seven ETFs in its suite have attracted inflows of more than $4 billion so far this year, lifting their assets under management to $42 billion. That makes ARK the 10th largest ETF issuer, according to the latest League Table

For a full list of this week's top inflows and outflows, see the tables below:

Top 10 Creations (All ETFs)

TickerNameNet Flows ($,mm)AUM ($, mm)AUM % Change
IEMGiShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF2,288.2974,701.013.06%
XLFFinancial Select Sector SPDR Fund1,505.6530,046.605.01%
VCITVanguard Intermediate-Term Corporate Bond ETF1,394.0743,592.113.20%
MBBiShares MBS ETF1,309.2826,592.604.92%
ARKKARK Innovation ETF1,296.7321,889.535.92%
DIASPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF Trust1,071.3825,780.494.16%
BNDVanguard Total Bond Market ETF1,055.5269,221.381.52%
FTCSFirst Trust Capital Strength ETF1,037.938,056.9212.88%
VTIVanguard Total Stock Market ETF1,004.20208,072.740.48%
ICLNiShares Global Clean Energy ETF868.006,661.5113.03%


Top 10 Redemptions (All ETFs)

TickerNameNet Flows ($,mm)AUM ($, mm)AUM % Change
SPYSPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust-3,131.84333,660.95-0.94%
GLDSPDR Gold Trust-1,231.6769,375.78-1.78%
OMFLInvesco Russell 1000 Dynamic Multifactor ETF-867.121,309.56-66.21%
VUGVanguard Growth ETF-864.0967,736.42-1.28%
HYGiShares iBoxx USD High Yield Corporate Bond ETF-843.1923,824.65-3.54%
IWFiShares Russell 1000 Growth ETF-785.3263,695.32-1.23%
TLTiShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF-773.4517,271.05-4.48%
XLCCommunication Services Select Sector SPDR Fund-678.1111,146.29-6.08%
USMViShares MSCI USA Min Vol Factor ETF-604.0332,426.52-1.86%
XLPConsumer Staples Select Sector SPDR Fund-487.1912,406.26-3.93%


ETF Weekly Flows By Asset Class

 Net Flows ($, mm)AUM ($, mm)% of AUM
U.S. Equity1,328.723,190,098.730.04%
International Equity13,811.971,116,615.251.24%
U.S. Fixed Income5,635.99971,452.600.58%
International Fixed Income646.83124,627.300.52%
Asset Allocation17.8113,450.700.13%


Asset Classes (Year-to-Date)

 Net Flows ($, mm)AUM ($, mm)% of AUM
U.S. Equity11,598.603,190,098.730.36%
International Equity17,703.671,116,615.251.59%
U.S. Fixed Income6,378.73971,452.600.66%
International Fixed Income1,504.98124,627.301.21%
Asset Allocation21.7513,450.700.16%


Top 10 Weekly Performers, Excluding Leverage/Inverse Funds and <1,000 Shares Traded

TickerNameWeekly PerformanceWeekly VolumeAUM ($, mm)
VCARSimplify Volt RoboCar Disruption and Tech ETF27,393.45%16,16712,406.26
GRUElements MLCX Grains Index-Total Return ETN16.41%59,8103.90
POTXGlobal X Cannabis ETF14.23%1,384,10664.65
MLPOCredit Suisse S&P MLP Index ETN12.09%6,02619.98
THCXThe Cannabis ETF10.37%1,411,27680.54
MSOSAdvisorShares Pure US Cannabis ETF9.30%4,633,847523.75
MJETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF9.14%13,420,6991,373.08
YOLOAdvisorShares Pure Cannabis ETF9.06%3,169,829246.91
AMZAInfraCap MLP ETF8.33%421,878176.00
FTXNFirst Trust Nasdaq Oil & Gas ETF7.74%47,85520.52


Top 10 YTD Performers

TickerNameYTD PerformanceWeekly PerformanceAUM ($, mm)
VCARSimplify Volt RoboCar Disruption and Tech ETF27,393.45%27,393.45%20.52
POTXGlobal X Cannabis ETF40.30%14.23%64.65
THCXThe Cannabis ETF33.68%10.37%80.54
BDRYBreakwave Dry Bulk Shipping ETF29.35%-3.68%24.87
MJETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF28.08%9.14%1,373.08
CNBSAmplify Seymour Cannabis ETF27.62%7.64%43.38
MLPOCredit Suisse S&P MLP Index ETN26.74%12.09%19.98
YOLOAdvisorShares Pure Cannabis ETF26.06%9.06%246.91
MSOSAdvisorShares Pure US Cannabis ETF24.03%9.30%523.75
CNRGSPDR S&P Kensho Clean Power ETF23.80%3.51%328.83


Disclaimer: All data as of 6 a.m. Eastern time the date the article is published. Data is believed to be accurate; however, transient market data is often subject to subsequent revision and correction by the exchanges.

Sumit Roy is the senior ETF analyst for, where he has worked for 13 years. He creates a variety of content for the platform, including news articles, analysis pieces, videos and podcasts.

Before joining, Sumit was the managing editor and commodities analyst for Hard Assets Investor. In those roles, he was responsible for most of the operations of HAI, a website dedicated to education about commodities investing.

Though he still closely follows the commodities beat, Sumit covers a much broader assortment of topics for, with a particular focus on stock and bond exchange-traded funds.

He is the host of’s Talk ETFs, a popular video series that features weekly interviews with thought leaders in the ETF industry. Sumit is also co-host of Exchange Traded Fridays,’s weekly podcast series.

He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, where he enjoys climbing the city’s steep hills, playing chess and snowboarding in Lake Tahoe.