Record $45B Flows Into ETFs This Week

Record $45B Flows Into ETFs This Week

ETFs had a monster haul thanks to U.S. equity ETFs such as ‘SPY’ and ‘DVY.’

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

The return of volatility is one of the biggest themes in financial markets so far this year. From stocks to bonds, prices are fluctuating much more vigorously than they did last year. Another place volatility is rearing its head? ETF flows.

After seeing a record-setting monthly inflow of $68.1 billion in January, ETFs registered their first monthly outflow in two years in February, totaling $4.4 billion.

Not to be outdone, flows in March are proving to be even more wild. Just this week, an incredible $44.7 billion entered U.S.-listed ETFs, according to FactSet. Such a number would be sizable for any month, let alone in just five trading sessions.

With the record week in the books, year-to-date inflows through Thursday, March 15 are now up to $97.4 billion. That’s close to where flows stood at this same time last year.

$39B Into US Equity ETFs

After abandoning U.S. equity ETFs for the last several weeks, investors came roaring back into the space this week. Thanks to $10.8 billion worth of inflows for the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) alone, U.S. equity ETFs picked up $39.3 billion in new cash in total.

Despite this week’s inflows, SPY still has a net outflow of $7.8 billion for the year as a whole. As the world’s largest and most liquid ETF, it’s been the preferred trading vehicle for all types of investors and speculators amid this year’s market volatility.

This week’s stampede into U.S. equity ETFs wasn’t caused by a surge in the markets. The S&P 500 briefly topped the 2,800 level during the week but fell back to around 2,750 by week’s end amid reports that the Trump administration could impose steep tariffs on China in the near future, fueling renewed trade war fears.

The iShares Select Dividend ETF (DVY), the PowerShares QQQ Trust (QQQ) and the iShares Core MSCI EAFE ETF (IEFA) were other ETFs to see large inflows during the period.

LQD & TLT Top Outflows

Outside of U.S. equity ETFs, the numbers were much smaller, but still respectable. International equity ETFs had inflows of $3.8 billion, and U.S. fixed-income ETFs had inflows of just over $1 billion.

Treasury bond prices rallied and yields on the 10-year fell to between 2.8% and 2.85% following the release of benign inflation data and weaker-than-expected retail sales figures.

While fixed-income ETFs had net inflows on the whole, the iShares iBoxx $ Investment Grade Corporate Bond ETF (LQD) and the iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF (TLT) were at or near the top of the outflows list.

Likewise, the iShares MSCI Eurozone ETF (EZU), the iShares MSCI United Kingdom ETF (EWU) and the iShares MSCI Japan ETF (EWJ) were notable flows losers in the international equity ETF space.

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
SPYSPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust10,771.66277,067.734.04%
DVYiShares Select Dividend ETF3,547.4820,589.7420.82%
QQQPowerShares QQQ Trust2,708.4367,565.384.18%
IEFAiShares Core MSCI EAFE ETF2,519.3456,388.454.68%
SCHDSchwab U.S. Dividend Equity ETF2,332.759,744.3931.47%
VIGVanguard Dividend Appreciation ETF1,900.7729,618.696.86%
IWMiShares Russell 2000 ETF1,639.6343,128.803.95%
XLKTechnology Select Sector SPDR Fund1,160.6422,232.955.51%
IEMGiShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF1,040.7650,772.602.09%
IJRiShares Core S&P Small Cap ETF1,040.6338,675.422.77%

Top 10 Redemptions (All ETFs)

TickerNameNet Flows ($,mm)AUM ($, mm)AUM % Change
LQDiShares iBoxx $ Investment Grade Corporate Bond ETF-907.0231,497.19-2.80%
EZUiShares MSCI Eurozone ETF-423.2215,246.51-2.70%
TLTiShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF-336.286,306.22-5.06%
EWUiShares MSCI United Kingdom ETF-324.162,000.20-13.95%
EPPiShares MSCI Pacific ex-Japan ETF-272.012,741.80-9.03%
EWJiShares MSCI Japan ETF-271.8522,067.62-1.22%
VNQVanguard Real Estate ETF-218.9729,841.65-0.73%
XLEEnergy Select Sector SPDR Fund-213.9217,272.83-1.22%
EFAiShares MSCI EAFE ETF-169.3079,276.34-0.21%
XLUUtilities Select Sector SPDR Fund-143.216,707.30-2.09%

ETF Weekly Flows By Asset Class

 Net Flows ($, mm)AUM ($, mm)% of AUM
U.S. Equity39,325.412,011,257.591.96%
International Equity3,786.42856,615.960.44%
U.S. Fixed Income1,039.03520,629.540.20%
International Fixed Income373.3563,046.770.59%
Commodities 154.1769,487.970.22%
Asset Allocation105.779,080.521.16%

Top 10 Volume Surprises, Funds >$50 mm AUM

TickerNameAverage Volume
(30 Day)
1 Week Average
% of Average
MFUSPIMCO RAFI Dynamic Multi-Factor U.S. Equity ETF74,305434,134584.26%
RIGSRiverFront Strategic Income Fund240,9371,319,009547.45%
BTECPrincipal Healthcare Innovators Index ETF2,89414,603504.60%
CORPPIMCO Investment Grade Corporate Bond Index ETF68,305198,075289.99%
GTOGuggenheim Total Return Bond ETF18,79557,746307.24%
QEMMSPDR MSCI Emerging Markets StrategicFactors ETF28,38260,190212.07%
TTACTrimTabs All Cap U.S. Free-Cash-Flow ETF16,66036,422218.62%
QEFASPDR MSCI EAFE StrategicFactors ETF12,90125,171195.11%
QUSSPDR MSCI USA StrategicFactors ETF8,31314,612175.77%
IWXiShares Russell Top 200 Value ETF21,78738,594177.14%


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.