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Wednesday, June 24, 2020

For the Second Time In Six Years ...

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

The worm turned, though for how long is still TBD. For the first time in more than two years (since January 2018) and the second time in more than six years (since March 2014), active inflows beat passive ones last month.

Mary Callahan Erdoes
J.P. Morgan
CEO of Asset and Wealth Management
This article draws from Morningstar Direct data on May 2020 open-end mutual and ETF flows in the U.S., excluding money market funds and funds of funds.

"Active beat passive in May because much of the month's inflows went to taxable- and muni-bond funds ... About 65% of all taxable-bond fund assets — and 94% of muni-bond fund assets — are actively managed," writes Tony Thomas, senior analyst at M* and one of the authors of the firm's monthly report on U.S. mutual fund and ETF flows. "Meanwhile, passively managed equity funds had relatively strong redemptions in May, perhaps due to rebalancing away from equities as stocks rallied."

On the active side of the business, J.P. Morgan (including Six Circles) took the lead last month, with estimated net May active inflows of $6.086 billion, up from $1.669 billion in April. Other big May active inflows winners included: BlackRock, $4.581 billion (up from $3.469 billion); Vanguard, $3.478 billion (up from $170 million); Edward Jones' Bridge Builder, $4.001 billion (up from $747 million in net outflows); and Morgan Stanley, $2.977 billion (up from $1.571 billion).

On the passive side of the business, SSGA kept the lead again last month, thanks to estimated net May passive inflows of $6.992 billion, down from $15.887 billion in April. Other big May passive inflows winners included: Vanguard, $3.478 billion (up from $170 million); Invesco, $3.389 billion (up from $2.476 billion); Fidelity, $2.125 billion (up from $607 million); and VanEck, $1.265 billion (up from $1.121 billion in net outflows).

On the flip side, May was a rough month for DFA's active funds, which suffered an estimated $3.729 billion in net outflows, more than any other active fund firm and up from $3.225 billion in April. Other big May active outflows sufferers included: Invesco, $2.811 billion (down from $4.145 billion); Dodge & Cox, $2.103 billion (up from $1.558 billion); Franklin Templeton, $1.704 billion (down from $2.305 billion); and Harris' Oakmark, $1.404 billion (down from $2.317 billion).

< UBS led the passive outflows pack last month, suffering an estimated 2.433 billion in net May passive outflows, more than any other passive fund firm and up from $60 million in April. Other big May passive outflows sufferers included: T. Rowe Price, $1.314 billion (up from $725 million); Credit Suisse, $912 million (up from $396 million); KraneShares, $675 million (up from $127 million); and WisdomTree, $570 million (down from $829 million).

Industrywide, 712 active fund families (three fewer than in April) brought in an estimated $17.995 billion in net active inflows in May, up from $21.202 billion in net active outflows in April. 294 of those active fund families gained net active inflows in May, up from 289 in April.

141 passive fund families (down five from April) brought in an estimated $15.006 billion in net May passive inflows, down from $37.59 billion in April. 67 of those families gained net passive inflows in May, down from 75 in April. 

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