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Rating:Have Shifting Mutual Fund Flows Reached a Tipping Point? Not Rated 0.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Monday, January 11, 2016

Have Shifting Mutual Fund Flows Reached a Tipping Point?

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

RIAs, not independent broker-dealers and wirehouses, are the hot mutual fund sales channel now.

Frank Polefrone, senior vice president of product development for Broadridge's Access Data unit, tells MFWire that for the first 11 months of 2015, the RIA channel stood out among intermediary channels by increasing long-term mutual fund AUM by $30 billion through November 30, 2015.

Frank Polefrone
Access Data
Senior Vice President of Product Development
"It's also the only channel ending Q3 that had a positive increase in assets for both ETFs and long-term funds [looking back 12 months]," Polefrone says. "It's a trend we've been watching for a while. I don't know that the trend is surprising anybody but I think we've reached a tipping point."

The wirehouse and indie B-D channels, by comparison, saw decreases in long-term mutual fund AUM in the first 11 months of 2015. Those decreases more than countered the gains in the RIA channel.

ETF AUM across all channels rose by $156 billion, 7.5 percent, from January 1, 2015 through November 30, 2015. $43 billion of that increase was in the wirehouse channel, an increase second only to the RIA channel, and another $30 billion was in the indie B-D channel. Polefrone notes that earlier in 2015, for the first time ever in the retail channels, ETFs added more assets on an absolute basis (not just by percentage) than mutual funds added.

"Overall management of assets is so much more in portfolios and models these days as opposed to directly," Polefrone says. 

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