What Bear Market? Investors Add $28B To ETFs

December 21, 2018

What bear market? Either oblivious to the turmoil hitting U.S. stocks in December—or sensing opportunity—ETF investors plowed billions of dollars into exchange-traded products this week.

Despite another big down week in the market, putting the S&P 500 on track for its worst December performance since the Great Depression, and more than 17% off its all-time highs, investors added $27.5 billion to ETFs during the week ending Thursday, Dec. 20.

The inflows were led by U.S. equity ETFs, which pulled in $13 billion. International equity ETFs and U.S. fixed-income ETFs also saw strong inflows, of $6.3 billion and $7.8 billion, respectively.

Year-to-date net inflows for all ETFs in 2018 now total $305.6 billion, the second-largest annual haul ever.

S&P 500 ETFs Pick Up Assets

After this week’s sell-off, U.S. small-cap and midcap stocks are down more than 20% from their all-time highs, a level some call a bear market. The S&P 500 is close behind, with only a few percentage points to go before it hits that ominous threshold.

But ETF investors aren’t running scared. If anything, they are taking full advantage of the downturn to load up on stocks. The iShares S&P 500 Growth ETF (IVW), the iShares S&P 500 Value ETF (IVE) and the iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (IVV) all saw billions of dollars’ worth of inflows this week.

Investors also continued to like Treasuries, and short-term Treasuries in particular. The iShares 1-3 Year Treasury Bond ETF (SHY) picked up $1.8 billion of new money this week as bond prices rallied and interest rates sagged to multimonth lows—a counterintuitive reaction to the Fed’s rate hike this week.

Outflows From Sector ETFs

While broad market ETFs were in favor this week, certain sector ETFs faced heavy outflows. The Financial Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLF), the Health Care Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLV), the Vanguard Information Technology ETF (VGT) and the Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLE) had redemptions of more than $450 million each.

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

Top 10 Creations (All ETFs)

Ticker Name Net Flows ($,mm) AUM ($, mm) AUM % Change
IVW iShares S&P 500 Growth ETF 2,671.00 22,337.70 11.96%
IVE iShares S&P 500 Value ETF 2,048.74 16,184.86 12.66%
BSV Vanguard Short-Term Bond ETF 1,870.51 27,665.59 6.76%
SHY iShares 1-3 Year Treasury Bond ETF 1,790.66 19,644.38 9.12%
IVV iShares Core S&P 500 ETF 1,462.97 147,420.99 0.99%
VTV Vanguard Value ETF 1,342.36 42,139.89 3.19%
IJS iShares S&P Small-Cap 600 Value ETF 1,014.03 6,228.27 16.28%
IEMG iShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF 872.55 49,153.70 1.78%
IWM iShares Russell 2000 ETF 855.65 40,576.97 2.11%
IJJ iShares S&P Mid-Cap 400 Value ETF 814.90 6,145.69 13.26%

Top 10 Redemptions (All ETFs)

Ticker Name Net Flows ($,mm) AUM ($, mm) AUM % Change
QQQ Invesco QQQ Trust -1,538.17 59,794.17 -2.57%
XLF Financial Select Sector SPDR Fund -1,512.35 22,982.84 -6.58%
XLV Health Care Select Sector SPDR Fund -549.73 18,455.52 -2.98%
VGT Vanguard Information Technology ETF -510.20 17,458.73 -2.92%
XLE Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund -456.06 13,481.26 -3.38%
EZU iShares MSCI Eurozone ETF -431.02 6,612.05 -6.52%
VNQ Vanguard Real Estate ETF -423.65 29,090.46 -1.46%
JNK SPDR Bloomberg Barclays High Yield Bond ETF -410.48 7,575.46 -5.42%
KRE SPDR S&P Regional Banking ETF -377.05 2,850.50 -13.23%
DIA SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF Trust -353.30 19,902.26 -1.78%

ETF Weekly Flows By Asset Class

  Net Flows ($, mm) AUM ($, mm) % of AUM
U.S. Equity 12,964.93 1,896,678.77 0.68%
International Equity 6,286.67 736,258.15 0.85%
U.S. Fixed Income 7,843.84 585,953.68 1.34%
International Fixed Income -342.41 65,967.85 -0.52%
Commodities  175.31 60,946.35 0.29%
Currency 1.43 1,756.61 0.08%
Leveraged 816.89 30,544.01 2.67%
Inverse -422.66 12,299.77 -3.44%
Asset Allocation 257.90 9,141.82 2.82%
Alternatives -81.22 4,928.90 -1.65%
Total: 27,500.67 3,404,475.90 0.81%

Asset Classes (Year-to-Date)

  Net Flows ($, mm) AUM ($, mm) % of AUM
U.S. Equity 136,792.87 1,896,678.77 7.21%
International Equity 66,259.80 736,258.15 9.00%
U.S. Fixed Income 81,187.64 585,953.68 13.86%
International Fixed Income 10,872.56 65,967.85 16.48%
Commodities ETFs -274.04 60,946.35 -0.45%
Currency -111.66 1,756.61 -6.36%
Leveraged 7,560.37 30,544.01 24.75%
Inverse 1,715.58 12,299.77 13.95%
Asset Allocation 1,251.72 9,141.82 13.69%
Alternatives 310.87 4,928.90 6.31%
Total: 305,565.70 3,404,475.90 8.98%

Top 10 Volume Surprises, Funds >$50 mm AUM

Ticker Name Average Volume
(30 Day)
1 Week Average
Volume
% of Average
USEQ Invesco Russell 1000 Enhanced Equal Weight ETF 118,348 775,191 655.01%
GNAF MicroSectors FANG+ Index Inverse ETN 318 1,900 596.66%
EAGG iShares ESG U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF 1,311 6,859 523.22%
EQAL Invesco Russell 1000 Equal Weight ETF 143,505 709,657 494.52%
HYGH iShares Interest Rate Hedged High Yield Bond ETF 105,493 504,955 478.66%
HYHG ProShares High Yield-Interest Rate Hedged ETF 46,770 195,579 418.17%
HFXI IQ 50 Percent Hedged FTSE International ETF 137,238 526,056 383.32%
IHY VanEck Vectors International High Yield Bond ETF 50,157 191,902 382.60%
ELD WisdomTree Emerging Markets Local Debt Fund 45,040 153,952 341.81%
MUNI PIMCO Intermediate Municipal Bond Active ETF 69,797 232,174 332.64%

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.

 

Find your next ETF

CLEAR FILTER